During your stay with us, many members of our staff will care for your medical needs. Following are the most common:
The physician who admits you is responsible for directing your care while you are in the hospital. Your physician, as the coordinator of your treatment program, should be consulted if you have questions about your illness. During your hospital stay, your family doctor may request a specialist to manage your care; however, your family physician will remain your primary care physician.
Your physician may request that a Hospitalist or an Intensivist take care of you while you are a patient at St. Joseph Hospital. If you do not have a family physician on staff at St. Joseph Hospital, a Hospitalist or Intensivist will be assigned to you. St. Joseph Hospital has the only program in Orange County with board-certified Hospitalists and Intensivists, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
What is a Hospitalist and an Intensivist?
Hospitalist: An internal medicine specialty physician whose primary professional focus is to care for patients in the hospital.
Intensivist: An intensive care specialist whose primary focus is to care for patients in the critical care units in the hospital.
A Hospitalist or Intensivist is a dedicated, fully trained, full-time clinician who only cares for hospitalized patients. National studies have shown Hospitalists and Intensivists improve clinical outcomes. This means patients receive the best possible care while they are in the hospital.
Hospitalists and Intensivists manage patients in the hospital. These physicians assess patients in the Emergency Department, admit patients, arrange for specialty consultants and arrange post-hospital care. They then refer the patients back to their regular physician for outpatient care.
Hospitalists and Intensivists represent one of the most rapidly growing forms of medical practice in the United States. In addition to taking care of patients, Hospitalists and Intensivists are partners with the hospital in improving processes and outcomes. They participate on patient flow teams, collaboration teams, ethics and a variety of quality improvement teams.
Benefits of Having a Hospitalist or Intensivist
By focusing their practice on the care of a hospitalized patient, a Hospitalist or Intensivist can gain a great deal of experience in the unique aspects of a patient’s needs during the hospital stay. Because a Hospitalist or an Intensivist spends most of their day in the hospital, they are readily available to a patient.
Hospitalists and Intensivists are in communication with your primary care physician/family physician and will return you back to your physician after discharge. If you do not have a physician, they will assist you in finding one.
If you have any questions about your care while you are a patient at St. Joseph Hospital, ask your nurse to contact your Hospitalist or Intensivist.
Registered Nurses are trained in specialty care and are available on every nursing unit 24 hours a day. Nurse Managers are available to assist you with any accommodations that are needed. Nursing staff work together with your physician and other healthcare team members. Click here for more information on nursing.
Service Representatives primarily serve as liaisons between patients/families/visitors and the hospital. They interpret the hospital’s philosophy, policies, procedures and services. They may be reached at extension 11000 from within the hospital, or (714) 771-8000 extension 11000 from outside the hospital. You may also contact them via e-mail at Service.Representative@stjoe.org.
Case Managers/Discharge Planners are available to assist you and your family in evaluating and implementing plans for discharge from the hospital to the next level of care. They may assist you with insurance questions regarding your covered benefits for your continuing care needs after discharge. If you have needs for further care after discharge, inform your nurse or call the Case Management/Social Service Department at extension 18106 or by dialing “0” and asking the operator to connect you.
Social Workers are trained to help you and your family deal with stress related to your healthcare, coping with reduced functioning, depression, anxiety or family conflicts. They can also be helpful in providing referrals to community resources. The Case Management/Social Services department can be reached at extension 18106 or by dialing “0” and asking the operator to connect you.
St. Joseph Hospital values the whole person, body, mind and spirit. The Spiritual Care Department consists of certified Chaplains from diverse interfaith backgrounds. Their training prepares them to provide spiritual care to patients and families from all faith beliefs. The Chaplains provide emotional/ spiritual support during the patient’s hospital stay. They offer help with grief, loss, fear and anxiety, and offer help with understanding and filling out an Advance Healthcare Directive. The chaplains can also assist when issues regarding various cultural practices arise.
For Catholic patients, a Roman Catholic Priest is on staff to provide sacramental rituals such as the Anointing of the Sick and Reconciliation. There are Eucharistic Minister volunteers who bring Holy Communion daily to patients. Our chapel is located on the main floor of the hospital and is open to all. Mass is celebrated at noon Monday through Friday and at 5 p.m. on Saturday evening and 8 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. on Sunday. Click here for more information on the Spiritual Care Department.
Volunteers provide support services to patients and staff in countless ways from escorting you to your destination, helping with your discharge when it’s time to go home, visiting or bringing the newspaper.
There are many other healthcare team members that may care for you during your stay, such as:
- Respiratory Therapist
- Physical Therapist
- Occupational Therapist
- Speech Therapist