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The fifth law of The House of God: Placement comes first.

Placement or placementology is the subspecialty once known as hospital medicine.[1][2][3] Placement refers to the placing of patients somewhere else other than a hospital, whether it's a nursing home, subacute rehabilitation (SAR) or skilled nursing facility (SNF, acute rehabilitation, or the moon.[4] Hospitalists, alongside social workers, play a key role in placement since over 85% of hospitalizations are related to placement exacerbation.[5] Placement exacerbations are very slow to resolve especially if uninsured and can be frequent, occurring as much as 12 times per year.

How Do I Tell if My Patient Needs Placement

Don't worry, your patient always needs placement. If your patient presented to the hospital on a Friday afternoon and/or family is nowhere to be found, congratulations, your patients needs placement.

Is a Discharge Home Placement?

One of the current controversies regarding placement is whether or not a discharge home is placement. Many would argue that placement is merely the act of placing someone somewhere else other than an acute inpatient unit, even if that place happens to be home. This is a huge talking point because if the formal recognition is made, then the goal of achieving 100% placement of all inpatients is feasible.[6]

Related Reading


  1. “Hospital Medicine” Renamed “Placement Medicine” (Gomerblog)
  2. Placement: A Hospitalist’s Perspective (Gomerblog)
  3. Dramatic “Code Placement” Captured on Tape (Gomerblog)
  4. Placement Tips: How to Place a Patient on the Moon (Gomerblog)
  5. Patient Admitted for Placement Exacerbations (Gomerblog)
  6. Hospitalists Aim to Place All Americans by 2020 (Gomerblog)

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