OSHA concerned about resident physician working hours

By: September 2nd, 2010 Email This Post Print This Post

OSHA may take aim at healthcare facilities and training programs that overwork resident physicians.

In response to a petition by Public Citizen and other advocacy groups, OSHA will examine the need for regulations that would limit the work hours of resident physicians, according to a September 2 statement issued by US Department of Labor’s OSHA Assistant Secretary, David Michaels, PhD, MPH.

“We are very concerned about medical residents working extremely long hours, and we know of evidence linking sleep deprivation with an increased risk of needlesticks, puncture wounds, lacerations, medical errors, and motor vehicle accidents,” Michaels said.

Worker fatigue as it relates to workplace safety is a concern in all industries, said Michaels, and by law employers must take steps to recognize and prevent hazards. “Hospitals and medical training programs are not exempt from ensuring that their employees’ health and safety are protected.”

 

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