Description: Although the title of this book suggests it conveys "just the facts" of hospital medicine, it appears to be as much attuned to administering a hospitalist group practice as providing inpatient-level medical care. Numerous articles cover various topics with tables and figures along with corresponding descriptions.
Purpose: The foreword gives a brief description of the state of the hospitalist movement in American medicine and somewhat of a justification for this book. The list of contributors is quite extensive.
Audience: This is a book for someone fairly well versed in inpatient medicine who is considering becoming a hospitalist. It emphasizes the interaction in the multidisciplinary nature of inpatient care, and the great number of contributors helps to bring all specialties into the discussion.
Features: I was surprised by the number of pages (specifically the first 100 and last 20) dedicated to the nonclinical aspects of being a hospitalist. Many of the topics in the administrative sections relate to such aspects as the quality movement in medicine, leadership, and management techniques and styles. This is followed by the core competencies for those practicing as hospitalists. Many of these topics are redundant, e.g. chest pain, suspected angina, and acute coronary syndromes cover similar ground. Subsequent editions could be improved by editing to avoid such overlap.
Assessment: Perhaps future editions will hone the material and define whether the book will be clinically or administratively oriented.