ARE DOCTOR WORKING TOO HARD?
Keywords:House Officer Stress Syndrome, Cognitive Sleep Debt, Pager Policy
Background: The house officers face multiple challenging situations at work throughout their internship year leading to House Officer Stress Syndrome. Objectives: The paper addresses the aspects of house officer stress syndrome and its influence on their work. Study Design: Cross sectional study. Setting: Tertiary health care setup of Karachi. Period: October to November 2017. Method: A self-designed and self-explanatory questionnaire was prepared and distributed among house officers during work hours. Verbal consent was taken. Confidentiality of the participants was observed. The data was analyzed using SPSS-20, ANOVA and also via a 5 point Linkert scale. Result: A total of 278 responses were obtained from 13 different hospitals, maximum from Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre. Among the respondents, 83.9% were females and 15.8% were males. Mean age was 24. Around 42.6% worked 96 hours weekly while 64% reported to be on call 7-9 times monthly. On call available sleep time was as low as 1-2 hours. Nearly 56.4% found work physically tiring. Conclusion: It can be concluded that house officers are susceptible to stress which affects their overall work performance. Henceforth, a holistic approach must be taken in order to promote a healthy working environment and effective patient care.