The experts say you shouldn’t drive a car without a full eight hours of sleep. Would you perform a medical procedure?
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), an organization that oversees residency requirements for doctors in training has suggested changing the maximum shift from 16 hours to 28 — working over two days straight. The proposal recently closed to public comments and is set for review in February 2017.
Sleep impairment and reduced reaction
Many studies of driver behavior show that sleep deprivation causes serious impairment to the senses. According to an Australian research group, being awake for 18 hours (10 hours fewer than the new proposal for doctors) is comparable to a .05 blood alcohol concentration. After 24 hours, that jumps to .10, which is above the legal driving limit. Even a slightly reduced sleep scheduled hurts reaction and awareness. Car accidents for those sleeping 6-7 hours per night are almost double those who sleep 8 hours or more.