Case Management

Q&A: What is the role of the physician advisor in discharge planning?

Case Management Weekly, September 29, 2010

Q. What is the role of the physician advisor in discharge planning?

A. Physician advisor (PA) involvement in discharge planning varies among organizations. The answer to this question lies in an organization’s job description for the PA. The contractual agreement between a hospital and its PA provides the basis for this job description. Discharge planners don’t need access to the contract, but they do need access to the job description. A discussion with the hospital administrator is necessary if the job description fails to address the PA’s role in discharge planning.

Discharge planners must ensure that hospital PAs have a copy of relevant provisions of the Social Security Act pertaining to discharge planning and the Interpretive Guidelines for discharge planning. Everyone is responsible for discharge planning compliance. Ensuring that everyone involved in the process is aware of the rules and regulations is the best way to ensure compliance.

This week’s question and answer is adapted from Discharge Planning Guide: Tools for Compliance, Third Edition, published by HCPro, Inc. For more information about this book or to order your copy, visit the HCMarketplace.

Do you have a question about a case management topic? Send it to Associate Editor Ben Amirault at An answer to your question might appear in a future issue of Case Management Weekly.

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