Letter from the Editor

It's a new year, and ACP Hospitalist has a new look.

It's a new year, and ACP Hospitalist has a new look. You'll notice that we've redesigned our interior pages to bring a fresh, modern feel to all of our content. There are other changes in the works, too: This year, look for new departments on quality, coding and career management, as well as additional expert commentary on clinical and other important topics. Plans to enhance our online presence are also under way. In the coming months we'll be starting an e-newsletter, ACP HospitalistWeekly, to keep you up-to-date with the latest news and highlights (to sign up, just send us an email at acphospitalist[EACHAT]acponline.org) . And as always, we'll continue to include the features and departments you've come to expect, from conference coverage to our popular ‘Test Yourself’ case studies.

In this issue, we examine the business side of hospital medicine and what it takes to manage it successfully. Hospitalists' knowledge base and experience often make them natural choices for leadership in their hospitals and hospitalist groups, but a clinical background isn't always the best preparation for these positions. In our cover story, we look at what an MBA degree or targeted business courses can do for your career, and how to find the type of program that will work best for you.

While saying “I'm sorry” can be difficult for anyone, it's especially hard for physicians to apologize to patients for medical errors. With more states passing laws making it easier to apologize without legal consequences and, in some cases, mandating disclosure of medical mistakes, it's important to know what to say to a patient, and when to say it. In this issue, an expert offers physicians some tips on handling these difficult conversations.

We take a glimpse into the future of U.S. health care by talking with the newly installed president of the Joint Commission. Mark R. Chassin, MD, an internist, has practiced in a variety of health care settings, from community hospitals to academic medical centers, and plans to put his diverse experiences to good use. Click here to read an interview with Dr. Chassin about his vision for the Joint Commission, his thoughts on hospital quality and P4P, and the potential role of global partners in U.S. health care.

We welcome your opinions on our January issue, as well as on the topics you'd like to see covered in the future. Send us your feedback at acphospitalist[EACHAT]acponline.org. We look forward to hearing from you.

Jennifer Kearney-Strouse
Editor, ACP Hospitalist