US first year residents may work 24 hour shifts again after rule change

BMJ 2017; 356 doi: (Published 20 March 2017) Cite this as: BMJ 2017;356:j1421
  1. Owen Dyer
  1. Montreal

The organization that set the rules for US physicians’ hospital training has overturned a 2011 rule that restricted first year doctors to shifts no longer than 16 hours.

From 1 July, new medical graduates may work shifts as long as 24 hours at a time, plus four hours more to achieve a proper patient handover if necessary, say new rules drawn up by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education. The rule change will apply throughout the US. The total weekly limit of working hours will remain at 80 hours.

Stan Ashley, a surgeon at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, who chaired the committee that …

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