Friday, 1 August 2008

Rules and Doctors

Recent EU regulations are limiting the amount of hours doctors can work. Currently doctors are not allowed to work more than 52 hours a week, this is soon to go down to 48. You may cheer this change as a means of improving patient safety. I believe the european working time directive poses a much greater threat to standards of care. This directive means that there are fewer doctors available on wards at any one time. The NHS cant afford to hire more doctors to pick up the slack. As a result more than half of scotlands hospitals are in the process of closing. This also means that other professionals have to work harder. Nurse Specialists are suffering massively increasing loads of patients, and general ward nurses who do perform some tricky procedures are still working up to 80 hour weeks in order to cover understaffing. How is this not a risk to patient safty?

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