Doctor Training Courses: New Guideline Specifies Longer Hours for First Year Residents [Video]By Eleanor Bright, UniversityHerald Reporter
Doctor training courses for residents in their first year has been increased from 16 hours to 24 hours. The maximum working hours for the week is 80 hours. This will increase the time that resident doctors must care of their patients.
The Accreditation Council of Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) made the announcement last March 10. The increase in the number of hours for doctor training courses will take effect on July 1 of this year.
Since 2011, doctor training courses for first year residents was only 16 hours at a time. The shorter time was implemented to prevent accidents due to over fatigue from happening. Residents who are overworked and sleepy usually meet accidents while driving. Tired or sleepy ones could give wrong medication or wrong dosage. Tiredness could make a person irritable and this affects how doctors treat their patients, according to Fox News.
However, it was observed that five years of implementing shorter time for doctor training courses did not show remarkable results. The performance of first year residents remained similar to their performance when they had 24 hours duty. This was the conclusion made by Dr. Rowen Zetterman who is co-chairman of ACGME.
Several research studies served as basis for the new guideline regarding work hours for residents enrolled in doctor training courses. While many questioned the wisdom of increasing doctor training hours, ACGME believed that this will provide good training. The residents can have enough time to provide care to their patients. This would also serve as a learning opportunity for them, according to Business Insider.
Completion of 80 hours a week work is flexible. Residents can spend longer hours with a patient when needed. The extra hours will be counter as part of the doctor training courses.
ACGME is positive that once the new schedule is implemented on July one, residents would change their mind. They might consider the long working hours favorable to them.