Objective:

To identify factors associated with research productivity among pediatric hospitalists.

Methods:

We performed a cross-sectional online survey of pediatric hospitalists recruited from the American Academy of Pediatrics Section on Hospital Medicine from May to August 2009. We used abstract presentations at a national meeting (intermediate outcome) and ≥2 first-author peer-reviewed manuscripts (primary outcome) to measure research productivity. Information was also collected on environmental and physician characteristics. Stepwise logistic regression was performed to identify independent associations with research productivity.

Results:

Two hundred fifteen pediatric hospitalists completed the survey. The respondents included 82% in an academic environment, 15% fellowship trained, 25% with additional degrees, and 67% with no protected time for research. Fifty-six percent presented an abstract, and 17% had 2 or more publications. After adjusting for potential confounders, pediatric hospitalists were more likely to have presented an abstract if they had fellowship training, an additional degree, were “very interested” or “interested” in performing research, or worked in a free-standing children’s hospital or children’s hospital within a hospital. Pediatric hospitalists were more likely to have 2 or more publications if they had an additional degree or had presented an abstract.

Conclusions:

Among pediatric hospitalists, obtaining an additional degree and presenting an abstract at a national meeting are associated with research productivity. A minority of this group of pediatric hospitalists had fellowship training, degree training, or 2 or more first-author manuscripts published even though the majority are in an academic environment. These results suggest that structured training and a focus on abstract presentations at meetings could be a programmatic solution.

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