Effect of 80-hour workweek on continuity of care

Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2008 Oct;47(8):803-8. doi: 10.1177/0009922808318341. Epub 2008 May 28.

Abstract

Work limitations were mandated (2003) to increase safety and improve resident lifestyle. Is clinic continuity affected? Medical University of South Carolina pediatric residents' records for 6 months of 2002 (before regulation) and 2003 (after regulation) were reviewed. Continuity for physician formula, t tests, and multivariate linear regression were used. Continuity was calculated for 44 residents (2002) and 45 residents (2003). Mean continuity was 54% (2002) and 53% (2003; P = .5); continuity for well-child care visits was 78% (2002) and 73% (2003; P = .047). Continuity decreased most for interns (52% [2002], 47% [2003] for all visits; 76%, 67% for well-child care visits). In the multivariate model, year did not predict continuity. When only well-child care visits were considered, year showed a trend toward significance ( P = .07): 2003 had less continuity. Compared with third-year residents, interns had 8% points less continuity for all visits (6% points less for well-child care visits). Continuity can be maintained despite regulations. Interns are most vulnerable.

MeSH terms

  • Continuity of Patient Care*
  • Humans
  • Internship and Residency / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Linear Models
  • Pediatrics / education*
  • South Carolina
  • Workload / legislation & jurisprudence*