Friday, February 18, 2005

What the educators are saying

"Concern about medical errors has resulted in increased regulation of trainees' hours in the United States and Europe. To begin to quantify the effect of these changes on patient safety, trainees were randomised to a 'traditional' work schedule that included extended shifts (at least 24 hours) or a schedule that did away with extended shifts and cut the number of hours per week. During 2203 patient days involving 634 admissions, trainees on the traditional schedule made almost 36% more serious errors than those on the reduced shift, leading to a 22% increase for the entire critical care unit. Of particular note, the number of unintercepted errors for the traditional work schedule increased by more than 56%. Eliminating extended shifts and reducing the working week can improve patient safety. "

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