Medical News Today is reporting that medical interns often work longer hours than mandated according to two studies in the September 2006 issue of JAMA. I knew this all along, but the studies and news are interesting nontheless. According to MNT:
“The study included Web-based surveys of self-reported percutaneous exposures from 2,737 of the estimated 18,447 interns in U.S. postgraduate residency programs from 2002 to 2003. Each month, comprehensive Web-based surveys asked about work schedules and the occurrence of PIs in the previous month.
From a total of 17,003 monthly surveys, 498 PIs were reported. Of these, 294 were due to lacerations from a sharp instrument (such as a scalpel), and 204 were due to a needlestick. Rates of injuries varied significantly, depending on type of residency. Interns in surgery and obstetrics/gynecology residency programs had the greatest risk, presumably because they perform more invasive procedures than other specialties.
More than 80 percent of medical interns surveyed in 2003-2004 indicated they were working hours in excess of what is currently mandated, according to a study in the September issue of JAMA.”
It really is time to start cracking down on these programs. Head on over to HoursWatch and report anonymously.