Telepresser: National Poll Shows Overwhelming Bipartisan Support for Maintaining Current Limit on Work Hours for First-Year Medical Residents

Sept. 8, 2016


MEDIA ADVISORY

Telepresser: National Poll Shows Overwhelming Bipartisan Support for Maintaining Current Limit on Work Hours for First-Year Medical Residents

Physician Organizations Are Pressuring Accreditation Group to Lift 16-Hour Cap on First-Year Residents’ Work Shifts, Even Though Tired Doctors Make More Mistakes; Patients Prefer 16-Hour Cap

WHAT: A telephone press conference to discuss the release of a new poll showing that the public overwhelmingly favors restricting medical resident work shifts to no more than 16 straight hours without sleep. Public Citizen also will release a report detailing the poll results and summarizing research conducted to date on the dangers of sleep deprivation in residents to both the residents and their patients.

The national poll comes as the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) is facing intense pressure from dozens of physician organizations to lift the current 16-hour shift cap for first-year medical residents and allow them to work 28 or more hours in a row without sleep. The poll, conducted by Lake Research Partners, assessed the public’s attitudes toward the existing 16-hour restriction and proposals to eliminate it.

The telephone press conference will include experts who will explain how sleep deprivation in residents can harm both the residents and their patients; Celinda Lake, president of Lake Research Partners, who will present key findings of the poll; and David Harari, a second-year psychiatry resident, who will share how he was involuntarily placed in an experimental trial, known as iCOMPARE, in which he was forced to work shifts longer than the ACGME’s current 16-hour limit for first-year residents. Learn more about Public Citizen’s work on the unethical iCOMPARE trial. For an embargoed copy of the report, contact one of the people listed above.

WHEN: 10 a.m. EDT Tuesday, Sept. 13

WHO: Dr. Michael Carome, director, Public Citizen’s Health Research Group
Celinda Lake, president, Lake Research Partners
Dr. Charles Czeisler, Ph.D., chief, Division of Sleep and Circadian Disorders, Departments of Medicine and Neurology, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Baldino Professor of Sleep Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Dr. David Y. Harari, M.S.B., second-year psychiatry resident and clinical instructor at the University of Vermont Medical Center
Dr. Sammy Almashat, M.P.H., researcher, Public Citizen’s Health Research Group
Dr. Kelly Thibert, national president 2016-2017, American Medical Student Association
Dr. Pamela Wible, founder, Ideal Medical Care Movement and author of Physician Suicide Letters—Answered

CALL-IN: (800) 875-3456; passcode: BRAD61038

###