Submission ID 77996

Code OH-5-5
At the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:
Category Medical Education
Type Oral
Will the presenter be a: Graduate Student
Title The Fatigue Paradox: Team Perceptions of Physician Fatigue
Background/Purpose Ongoing calls to implement fatigue risk management (FRM) in residency education assume a shared understanding of physician fatigue as a workplace hazard, yet we lack empirical evidence that all health care team members maintain this assumption. Thus, this study seeks to explore how health care team members understand the role of physician fatigue in an effort to inform the implementation of FRM in residency training and medical practice.
Methods This study uses constructivist grounded theory to explore perceptions of workplace fatigue and its impact on clinical practice. We conducted individual semi‐structured interviews with physicians, nurses and senior residents across four hospitals in 8 different specialties for a total of 40 participants. Constant comparative analysis guided data analysis and led to the final grounded theory.
Results While participants outlined multiple problematic manifestations of physician fatigue on clinical performance, they were reluctant to acknowledge any negative impact of fatigue on patient care. We refer to these contradictions as the fatigue paradox. Four themes sustain the fatigue paradox: the indefatigable physician, blind spots, faith in safety nets and the minimisation of fatigue‐related events.
Discussion This study suggests that health care team members do not universally feel that physician fatigue is problematic for patient care, despite providing multiple examples to the contrary. This paradoxical understanding of fatigue likely exists because the system relies on fatigued physicians and provides few mechanisms to critically examine fatigue. Successful implementation of FRM in residency training may prove elusive if clinical supervisors are skeptical of the potentially negative impact of workplace fatigue.
Keyword 1 Fatigue
Keyword 2 Qualitative Research
Keyword 3 Medical Education
Abstract content most relevant to: (check all that apply) Continuing Professional Development (CPD) (faculty development, CME)
Residency Education
Abstract Track - First Choice Patient Safety
Authors Emily Field
Taryn Taylor
Richard Cherry
Julie Ann Van Koughnett
Sandra DeLuca
Emily Field
Emily Field

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