The hospitalist program provides superior inpatient care and seamless communication for primary care physicians (PCPs) and specialists. We strive to build therapeutic and long-term relationships with the patients (spanning admissions) and highly collaborative relationships with PCPs. This model allows development of a true partnership in the care of the hospitalized patient and, through direct accountability, provides excellent service to the patient and the PCP.

The Program

Our hospitalists cover medical admissions 24 hours a day, seven days a week for the PCPs who elect to use the hospitalist service. Physicians referring to the hospitalist program have around-the-clock, year-round coverage for their patients.

Hospitalists respond to inpatient emergencies for all patients regardless of the admitting physician.

Hospitalists are also available to facilitate direct admissions to Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital–Needham so that patients can avoid a trip through the emergency department. Please note that it is Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital–Needham policy that the patient needs to have been seen by the primary care provider or specialist physician within the previous 24 hours to qualify for direct admission status.

This program is closely linked with Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, so that any patient needing transfer to a tertiary care hospital gets priority in bed availability.

Hospitalists are required to be Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) certified, board certified or certification eligible in internal medicine, and to complete mandatory continuing education for Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital–Needham employees.

Key Leadership

Ghania El Akiki, MD
Hospitalist Site Director, Chief of Hospital Medicine, Needham

Joseph M. Li, MD
Network Chief, Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital Medicine, Boston, Milton, Needham, Plymouth

Program Contact Information

Ivonne Wood, Program Coordinator
Phone: (781) 453-3777

Communication with Primary Care Physicians

  • Emails to the PCP are sent on the day of admission.
  • Update emails are sent if there is a significant change in status or if family issues arise.
  • A dictated discharge summary plus a phone call or e-mail update is sent to the PCP when the patient is discharged.


Physicians practicing in the Hospitalist program at BID-Needham will be represented with exclusive coverage from Harvard Medical Faculty Physicians.