AV Hospital launches Internal Medicine Hospitalist Program

(L to R) Cynthia Jones, M.D., hospitalist; John Manning, M.D., AVHD board member; Luanne Foster, hospitalist program administrator; Berna Mayer, AVHD board member; Ferdinand Panoussi, D.O., hospitalist program medical director.

LANCASTER – This week, Antelope Valley Hospital (AVH) launched an internal medicine hospitalist program to provide high quality physician care, 24 hours a day, to adult patients who are admitted to the hospital without an assigned primary care physician.

This program broadens the scope of comprehensive care provided at the hospital, as a compliment to the hospitalist programs already established in the AVH pediatric and OB/GYN departments.

The new team of hospitalists includes seven board-certified/eligible physicians who specialize in the treatment of adult patients during their hospital stay.

The hospitalist program will make it possible for patients to be seen by a physician as quickly and as often as needed, providing immediate physician access to patients and their families.

“The hospitalist program will ensure that anyone at Antelope Valley Hospital – whether in the emergency room or hospital room – will have access to an experienced physician at a moment’s notice,” said Edward Mirzabegian, AVH Chief Executive Officer. “This will greatly enhance patient safety and satisfaction; improve communication between nurses, physicians and their patients; and allow us to focus our attention on thechallenges being brought on by healthcare reform.”

Ferdinand J. Panoussi, D.O., of Palmdale, will serve as medical director of the internal medicine hospitalist program.

He earned his bachelor’s degree from California State University, Northridge, and his medical degree from Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, California. Dr. Panoussi completed a three-year residency in internal medicine at the Loma Linda University Medical Center and is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine.

The hospitalist team of physicians also includes Hossein Ebneshahidi, M.D., Michael Friedlander, M.D., Cynthia Jones, M.D., Dana Tiganu, M.D., Vivian Nguyen,M.D., and Robin Zakariaei, M.D., with additional hospitalists going through the application process.

The hospitalists are scheduled for 12-hour shifts, with two physicians assigned during the day, and one at night, depending upon patient volumes.

Hospitalist programs provide trained physicians in the acute-care setting and have now become the standard of care in more than half of the hospitals in the nation. A fully trained physician will be in-house in order to round, admit and evaluate patients on a continuous basis.

In the past, local physicians have had competing priorities with their office patients and their patients in the hospital. Now there is a dedicated hospitalist available, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, allowing private practitioners to devote more time to their office patients.

“Many of our physicians have worked for years taking on the additional responsibility of caring for patients who were admitted to the hospital without a primary care physician,” said Mirzabegian. “We are grateful for their service and value the positive contributions they have made to the care provided at Antelope Valley Hospital.”

(Information via press release from Antelope Valley Hospital.)

  2 comments for “AV Hospital launches Internal Medicine Hospitalist Program

  1. Kelemon B. Panoussi
    October 19, 2012 at 7:35 pm

    We’re proud of you. congratulations on your job and on your engagement. We wish you all the luck. Cheryl & Kelemon

  2. mike rives
    October 11, 2012 at 11:03 am

    The ACA (Obamacare) is going to base reimbursments to hospitals on patient satisfaction surveys. In the past, local physicians have seen patients without a primary doc. Some local doctors, however, have refused because the patients don’t have any money or insurance. Now, the AV Hospital to ty to meet the requirements of Obamacare, and be able to care for patients, is going along with this program which is contracted for 900,000 dollars a year for two years with this hospitalist program. The hospital thinks it can get the money back by billing the patients for the services and, according to Dr. John Manning (pictured above), it may not cost the hospital anything.
    To me, the larger picture is ignored. There are people who know they have to be treated by ER, so they are going to the AV Hosp ER for minor problems and clogging it up. Is this new program going to address this problem?

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