To the Editor: In their study of the hospitalist
movement, Drs Wachter and Goldman1 stated
"although several studies found improved outcomes, such as inpatient mortality
and readmission rates, these results were inconsistent." In fact, these are
the 2 areas where most of the evidence indicated a lack of advantage by the
Of the 19 studies described in their table, mortality outcome was not
reported in 5 studies, no change in mortality between the groups was observed
in 11 studies, 1 study found less mortality in the control group, and only
2 studies reported decreased mortality in patients treated by the hospitalists.
Similarly, rates of readmission, from the information provided in the table,
in the control and hospitalist groups were not reported in 7 studies, no change
in readmission rates were reported in 9 studies, 1 study found higher readmission
rates in the hospitalist group, and only 2 studies demonstrated decreased
readmission rates in the patients of hospitalists.