Letter from the Editor

This month's issue includes stories on hospitalist workload, acute kidney injury, and academic careers, as well as coverage from the American Society of Clinical Oncology 2013 conference.

Nothing saps an employee's motivation faster than feeling like she is shouldering more of the burden than her colleagues. As such, it's important for workload to be equitable among coworkers. The problem in hospital medicine is that “workload” cannot simply be measured by hours on the clock, but must encompass more intangible factors such as the type of work, the acuity of patients, the time of day, etc. Recognizing these nuances, hospitalist programs are taking a hard look at ways to distribute workload fairly in their facilities. While the solution must be individualized to a given hospital or service, our cover story offers food for thought about how to conceptualize workload, as well as examples of successful ways some facilities are measuring and allocating it.

Also in this issue, we examine how newly minted academic hospitalists can establish themselves in their new jobs, and take smart, measured steps toward career advancement. Click here to read advice from successful academic hospitalists on the role of research, committees, mentors and networking in building a rewarding professional life. Meanwhile, a personal essay from an established hospitalist reminds us of the incredible rewards that can emerge during the daily routines of hospital medicine.

Our clinical focus this issue is on the management of cancer patients, and on acute kidney injury (AKI). For the latter, our feature story offers information on steps you can take to avert AKI, while our MKSAP test questions cover AKI. Also in this issue, we have recaps of three sessions from the American Society of Clinical Oncology's annual meeting in late spring, covering communication, sexual function and pain management.

Jessica Berthold
Editor, ACP Hospitalist