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Lack of Sleep Can Lead To Medical Mistakes

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A recent study has indicated that medical residents who are required to work long shifts and are often sleep deprived, put patients at risk of being the victim of a medical mistake. Allowing medical residents to practice medicine after having been awake for over 18 -24 hours straight, jeopordizes patients as the lack of sleep affects ones abilty to think clearly. Researchers found that when medical residents worked excessive marathon shifts, the risk of causing a fatigue related mistake that actually harmed a patient increased by 700% and the risk of making an error that resulted in a patients death increased by 300% Such data has led many to advocate changing work hours required of the residents.