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Home Industry News More than one-third of doctors ‘have fallen asleep while driving’

More than one-third of doctors ‘have fallen asleep while driving’

2nd February 2017

A new survey has shown how heavy workloads and sleep deprivation may be putting doctors' lives at risk on the roads.

Carried out on behalf of the BBC, the survey of more than 1,100 doctors from across the UK found that 41 percent admitted to have fallen asleep at the wheel of their cars after having worked night shifts.

This problem was shown to be most prevalent among pre-consultant grade doctors, a phenomenon attributed to the regular rotations of their places of work. It was also shown that more than half of respondents reported never having access to resting rooms while on call.

Responding to the findings, the British Medical Association (BMA) has called for the government to take action to tackle excessive workloads brought on by current NHS staffing shortages, highlighting the significant risk it poses.

BMA junior doctors committee co-chair Jeeves Wijesuriya said: "Sleep deprivation impairs judgement and decision-making skills. Not only is it dangerous for patients, but as these figures show, it can put the safety of doctors at risk."

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