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Observation and analysis of junior OB/GYNs’ workflow in German hospitals

  • General Gynecology
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Over the past few years the numbers of German physicians choosing to work abroad or leaving the medical profession have been growing. Main reasons for physicians’ dissatisfaction are the lack of autonomy and the subsequent workload. Studies have employed subjective instruments of evaluation to investigate levels of occupational stress. However, there is a lack of objective work task analysis. The aim of this study is to monitor the workflow of German obstetrician/gynecologists (OB/GYN) through an objective, computer-based analysis.


From 10/08 to 02/09 twenty OB/GYNs in three hospitals in Berlin were monitored (n = 19 females, n = 1 male, age 23–38 years). Each one of them was accompanied throughout three entire workdays.


The junior physicians’ average workday lasted 9:24:35 h (SD = 01:05:07 h). During this time period, they spent an average of 02:41:56 h/day (SD = 00:33:35 h) on internal communication (28.68%). On average 01:19:11 h (SD = 00:55:15 h) were spent in the operating room (14.03%). An average total of 5:38:28 h (SD = 00:11:22 h) were spent attending to indirect patient.


The workflow is disorganized and full of interruptions, which could cause medical errors. Improving the physicians’ work environment will likely require a reorganization of medical processes.

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We would like to thank all the physicians for their participation.

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We declare that we have no conflict of interest.

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Correspondence to Lisa Kloß.

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Kloß, L., Musial-Bright, L., Klapp, B.F. et al. Observation and analysis of junior OB/GYNs’ workflow in German hospitals. Arch Gynecol Obstet 281, 871–878 (2010).

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