Resident work hour limits and patient safety.
Resident work hour limitations have been enforced nationally since 2003 and in New York State since 1998. This study analyzed the impact of those limitations on standardized surgical patient safety indicators in New York teaching hospitals. Results revealed increased rates over time of accidental puncture or laceration and postoperative thromboembolic events, but no change in other measures. The authors conclude that resident work hour restrictions were not associated with significant improvements in surgicial patient safety.