Sleep Deprivation Among Health Care Workers

Author(s): Salim Surani and Shyam Subramanian

Pp: 84-93 (10)

DOI: 10.2174/978160805271411101010084

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


Medical residents have traditionally long working hours, compounded by uninterrupted shifts, and this combination leads to significant sleep deprivation. The training of new physicians has, in the past, been designed in order to provide maximum exposure to patient and surgical cases with no regard to circadian rhythms, sleep deprivation, or fatigue-related issues. Nurses, on the other hand, have been exposed to long hours and varied shifts in recent years due to excessive demand and severe shortage. Health care providers working for extended hours and variable shifts receive little or no education regarding fatigue countermeasures, sleep needs, and sleep hygiene. Sleep deprivation and variable shift work-related challenges have led to life-threatening errors, raising the concern for safety among health care providers over the past 2 decades. This chapter discusses sleep-related safety issues among resident doctors and nurses.

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