Wednesday, May 30, 2007

How many hours can you work?

Much has been said recently about working long hours and the associated risk of errors. Does your agency have rules about how many hours you can work consecutively or in a given week?

I spoke with a career firefighter recently who told me his department limited him to 3 shifts (72 hours) consecutively. Working in a slow house might not be so bad. Working a busy rescue...bad.

Even Reader's Digest has written about this in their article entitled Night Shift Nightmare. Although this is about hospitals and hospital personnel, I think we can all relate to the doc who fell asleep at traffic lights on the way home.

Want more info on patient safety and errors? Try: AHRQ Patient Safety network.

Be careful out there. For you...and your patients.


Anonymous said...

As many as my wife lets me!

Dan Limmer said...

This sounds like the voice of experience. Thanks for stopping by.