Journal of General Internal Medicine

, Volume 29, Issue 10, pp 1349–1354

Resident Duty Hours: A Survey of Internal Medicine Program Directors

Authors

    • Department of MedicineThe Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and Rhode Island Hospital
    • Graduate Medical Education CommitteeRhode Island Hospital
  • Brian C. Drolet
    • Department of Plastic SurgeryThe Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and Rhode Island Hospital
    • Graduate Medical Education CommitteeRhode Island Hospital
  • Dominick Tammaro
    • Department of MedicineThe Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and Rhode Island Hospital
    • Graduate Medical Education CommitteeRhode Island Hospital
  • Staci A. Fischer
    • Department of MedicineThe Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and Rhode Island Hospital
    • Graduate Medical Education CommitteeRhode Island Hospital
Original Research

DOI: 10.1007/s11606-014-2912-z

Cite this article as:
Garg, M., Drolet, B.C., Tammaro, D. et al. J GEN INTERN MED (2014) 29: 1349. doi:10.1007/s11606-014-2912-z

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION

In 2011, the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) implemented new Common Program Requirements to regulate duty hours of resident physicians, with three goals: improved patient safety, quality of resident education and quality of life for trainees. We sought to assess Internal Medicine program director (IMPD) perceptions of the 2011 Common Program Requirements in July 2012, one year following implementation of the new standards.

METHODS

A cross-sectional study of all IMPDs at ACGME-accredited programs in the United States (N = 381) was performed using a 32-question, self-administered survey. Contact information was identified for 323 IMPDs. Three individualized emails were sent to each director over a 6-week period, requesting participation in the survey. Outcomes measured included approval of duty hours regulations, as well as perceptions of changes in graduate medical education and patient care resulting from the revised ACGME standards.

RESULTS

A total of 237 surveys were returned (73 % response rate). More than half of the IMPDs (52 %) reported “overall” approval of the 2011 duty hour regulations, with greater than 70 % approval of all individual regulations except senior resident daily duty periods (49 % approval) and 16-hour intern shifts (17 % approval). Although a majority feel resident quality of life has improved (55 %), most IMPDs believe that resident education (60 %) is worse. A minority report that quality (8 %) or safety (11 %) of patient care has improved.

CONCLUSION

One year after implementation of new ACGME duty hour requirements, IMPDs report overall approval of the standards, but strong disapproval of 16-hour shift limits for interns. Few program directors perceive that the duty hour restrictions have resulted in better care for patients or education of residents. Although resident quality of life seems improved, most IMPDs report that their own workload has increased. Based on these results, the intended benefits of duty hour regulations may not yet have been realized.

KEY WORDS

graduate medical educationresident duty hourscompliancepatient safety

Supplementary material

11606_2014_2912_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (225 kb)
ESM 1(PDF 225 kb)

Copyright information

© Society of General Internal Medicine 2014