Residency/Fellowship Training and the Complication
Medical errors are believed to be the third leading cause of death in the United States and can have profound socioeconomic implications within the healthcare system. The need for academic teaching hospitals to effectively train resident physicians while minimizing the incidence of medical errors and ensuing complications during patient care has proven a significant challenge. National political efforts over the past two decades have introduced several interventions which aim to reduce the incidence of medical errors at these academic medical institutions. The precise relationship between the frequencies of complications associated with resident error, however, has been poorly elucidated in the past. Here, we provide a review of the current data on the relationship between medical care administered by residents and the incidence of complications. We further examine the role of fatigue, burnout, and duty hour restrictions on complication rates and consider the legal ramifications of resident error.
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