Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Unintended Consequences of Duty Hour Regulations for Medical Residents

Source : ENT Today
Here is a letter published in Academic Medicine on the unintended consequences of duty hour regulations.  What makes this letter most interesting is that it was written by medical residents and not the Old Guard.  A perspective published in the NEJM from a representative sample of US medical residents reported mixed feelings about duty hour restrictions. While positive responses were reported for potential improvement in resident quality of life under duty hour restrictions, both articles voiced concerns about the potential impact of less rigorous training. Under the new framework, graduates may be ill prepared for the demands of unsupervised patient care and for senior roles in hospitals.


I have previously commented on this subject. To date there is no quality evidence that these restrictions, whether duty hour or workload in nature, result in safer patient outcomes.


To become a competent doctor one must see many, many patients. To do so, one must spend long hours in the trenches. There are no shortcuts.   

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