Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2440/123099
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Type: Journal article
Title: Does emergency general surgery model affect staff satisfaction, training and working hours?
Author: Kinnear, N.
Tran, M.
Han, J.
Jolly, S.
Herath, M.
Hennessey, D.
Dobbins, C.
Sammour, T.
Moore, J.
Citation: ANZ Journal of Surgery, 2020; 90(3):262-267
Publisher: Wiley
Issue Date: 2020
ISSN: 1445-1433
1445-2197
Statement of
Responsibility: 
Ned Kinnear, Minh Tran, Jennie Han, Samantha Jolly, Matheesha Herath, Derek Hennessey, Christopher Dobbins, Tarik Sammour and James Moore
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Few studies have assessed the relationship between different emergency general surgery models and staff satisfaction, operative experience or working hours. The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons recommends maximum on-call frequency of one-in-four for surgeons and registrars. METHODS: A cross-sectional study was conducted of all medium- to major-sized Australian public hospitals offering elective general surgery. At each site, an on-call general surgery registrar and senior surgeon were invited to participate. Primary outcomes were staff satisfaction and registrar-perceived operative exposure. Secondary outcomes were working hours. RESULTS: Among eligible hospitals, 119/120 (99%) were enrolled. Compared with traditional emergency general surgery models, hybrid or acute surgical unit models were associated with greater surgeon and registrar satisfaction on quantitative (P = 0.012) and qualitative measures. Registrar-perceived operating exposure was unaffected by emergency general surgery model. Longest duration on-duty was higher among traditional structures for both registrars (mean 22 versus 15 h; P = 0.0003) and surgeons (mean 59 versus 41 h; P = 0.020). On-call frequency greater than one-in-four was more common in traditional structures for registrars (51% versus 28%; P = 0.012) but not surgeons (6% versus 0%; P = 0.089). Data on average hours per day off-duty were obtained for registrars only, and were lower in traditional structures (13 versus 15 h; P = 0.00002). CONCLUSION: Hybrid or acute surgical unit models may improve staff satisfaction without sacrificing perceived operative exposure. While average maximum duration on-duty exceeded hazardous thresholds for surgeons regardless of model, unsafe working hours for registrars were more common in traditional structures. General surgical departments should review on-call rostering to optimize staff and patient safety.
Keywords: Acute care surgery; acute general surgery; acute surgical unit; emergency general surgery
Description: First published online 19 December 2019
Rights: © 2019 Royal Australasian College of Surgeons
RMID: 1000011549
DOI: 10.1111/ans.15628
Appears in Collections:Medicine publications

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