In 2003, work-hour regulations were implemented by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education. Much has been published regarding resident rest and quality of life as well as patient safety. There has been no examination on the effect of work-hour restrictions on academic productivity of fellows in training. Paediatric subspecialty fellows have a scholarly requirement mandated by the American Board of Pediatrics. We have examined the impact of work-hour restrictions on the scholarly productivity of paediatric cardiology fellows during their fellowship.
We conducted a literature search for all paediatric cardiology fellows between 1998 and 2007 at a single academic institution as first or senior authors on papers published during their 3-year fellowship and 3 years after completion of their categorical fellowship (n=63, 30 fellows before 2003 and 33 fellows after 2003). The numbers of first- or senior-author fellow publications before and after 2003 were compared. We also collected data on final paediatric cardiology subspecialty career choice.
There was no difference in the number of fellow first-author publications before and after 2003. Before work-hour restrictions, the mean number of publications per fellow was 2.1 (±2.2), and after work-hour restrictions it was 2.0 (±1.8), (p=0.89). By subspecialty career choice, fellows who select electrophysiology, preventative cardiology, and heart failure always published within the 6-year time period.
Since the implementation of work-hour regulations, total number of fellow first-authored publications has not changed. The role of subspecialty choice may play a role in academic productivity of fellows in training.
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