Internal Medicine Hospitalists

Hospitalist: A physician who specializes in the practice of hospital medicine.

Working out of Deaconess Hospital, Rockwood's Internal Medicine Hospitalists offer comprehensive care for the acutely ill adult population.  They are experts in handling severe chronic illnesses and situations where several different illnesses may be present at the same time.

In addition to their core expertise managing the clinical problems of the acutely ill, hospitalized patients, hospital medicine practitioners work to enhance the quality of healthcare by:

  • Prompt and complete attention to all patient care needs including diagnosis, treatment, and the performance of medical procedures.
  • Employing quality improvement techniques.
  • Refering their patients to appropriate specialists as needed.
  • Collaboration, communication, and coordination with all physicians and healthcare personnel caring for hospitalized patients.
  • Safe transitioning of patient care within the hospital, and from the hospital to the outpatient clinic.
  • Efficient use of hospital and healthcare resources.

What is a hospitalist?
A hospitalist, or "inpatient physician," is a physician who specializes in caring for patients in the hospital. The hospitalist manages your course through the hospital, ordering tests and procedures, coordinating and consulting with specialists, closely monitoring your progress, and staying in close touch with you and your doctor. Our hospitalists are part of the Internal Medicine Department at Rockwood and are residency-trained, board-certified physicians in Internal Medicine.

Will the hospitalist talk with my doctor?
When you are admitted to the hospital, your primary care doctor communicates with the hospitalist about your condition and transfers the management of your care to the hospitalist. The hospitalist develops a plan with your primary care doctor. The hospitalist remains in contact with each patient's primary care physician. Your primary care physician will be informed about your care at discharge as well, and will receive a copy of your records. This two-way communication between the hospitalist and your primary care doctor enables a smooth transfer of care back to your primary care doctor.

How can the hospitalist benefit me?
Often when a patient is hospitalized, the primary care physician is not immediately available due to scheduled office hours or significant patient load. Hospitalists see only hospitalized patients, so they are readily available to respond to any changes in your condition, seeing you as often as necessary to provide you with the best care, and can arrange for immediate tests and assessments. Your hospitalist knows every specialist and department in the hospital, and will assist you through a smooth and speedy recovery process by following up on tests and adjusting your treatment regimen based on those test results.

Non-hospitalized patients also benefit from the hospitalist program. Before this program was in place, physicians would have to leave a waiting room full of patients and rush to the hospital if there was an emergency. Now, physicians can be assured that their hospitalized patients are getting the best of care without interrupting their daily office schedule. After patients are discharged, the primary-care physician once again assumes their ongoing care.


Deaconess Hospital

800 West Fifth Avenue
Spokane, WA  99204
TEL: (509) 458-5800
Map Location

Featured Provider


Teresa Sauther, ARNP

Teresa Sauther, ARNP, joined the Rockwood Hospitalist program in July 2014. She received a Bachelor of Nursing from Gonzaga University then competed her Master of Science in Nursing through the Intercollegiate School of Nursing in Spokane. Teresa is an Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner and is also NIH Stroke Scale certified. She is a member of the American Association of Critical Care Nurses, American Association of Nurse Practitioners and Sigma Theta Tau International.
Learn More about Teresa Sauther
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