Background: Academic promotion in Hospital Medicine (HM) can be limited by lack of senior mentorship and limited opportunities for early/mid-career (EMC) academic hospitalists to develop national collaborations.
Purpose: To provide opportunity to EMC academic hospitalists to showcase institutional best practices in an effort to gain national exposure/reputation, enhance academic portfolio, and foster networking amongst participating institutions on common theme topics.
Description: The SHM Research committee piloted a national Visiting Professor in Hospital Medicine (ViP) program consisting of 11 participating academic hospital medicine groups between 2016 and 2019. Exchange visits entailed structured day-long networking sessions including the delivery of a HM grand round lecture to foster cross-institutional collaborations and mentoring relationships. Subsequently, a follow up survey was filled by the ViP as well as the host institution regarding the feasibility and utility of the program. Twenty-two ViP participated in 43 exchange visits. Of the 18 ViP who completed the survey (response rate 82%), 10 (56%) were women, 10 (56%) were White, 6 (33%) represented the Midwest region and 15 (83%) were Assistant Professors. Most respondents reported that exchange visits were useful to advancing their academic careers (94%), helped gain national recognition for promotion preparations (89%), and that they received or felt comfortable requesting a support letter for promotion after their visits (83%). Fourteen (78%) ViP reported that they explored cross-institutional collaborations with the host institution and sixteen (89%) showed their interest in future collaborations. ViP reported favorable experiences with components of the exchange including communications about expectations for grand rounds (94%), grand rounds attendance (89%), interest shown by attendees (94%), interaction with leadership (94%) and junior faculty (78%), and exposures to innovative programs at the host institutions (83%).
Conclusions: The ViP program systematically recruited participants and helped address limitations and barriers impeding the promotion of scholarship and academic advancement of early/mid-career hospitalists. Given the program’s preliminary success, the ViP program plans to expand to include additional institutions in 2022 and provide virtual options for exchanges given the social distancing needs. Long term outcome data are needed about the impact of the ViP program on building a senior academic hospitalist pipeline.