In March 2018, on World Sleep Day, we published the Fatigue and Facilities Charter, which outlines simple steps that can be taken to improve facilities and reduce fatigue, so you can safely, effectively and efficiently care for your patients.
On World Sleep Day 2019, we are delighted that 99% of Trusts in England have signed up to the charter, while in June 2018 Wales became the first UK country to work towards a fatigue and facilities charter, which was sent to all Trusts and Health boards in Wales.
As doctors, you are all pulling together to meet increasing demands in an overstretched health service; working more intense hours, routinely missing breaks and dealing with inadequate rest facilities. We know this is bad for staff and your patients.
In recent years, there have been numerous examples of where doctors have driven home when too tired to do so, of substandard hospital accommodation and doctors being unable to take much needed breaks. There is also significant evidence that tiredness impairs good decision making, which in turn can lead to negative patient outcomes.
"Fatigue can have a devastating impact on both the health and wellbeing of doctors and consequently to patient care."
Trusts in England and Health boards in Wales are now taking measures to alleviate the problem, in the interests of patients, staff and employers. This is a view shared across the NHS with many organisations who are looking at interventions to improve doctor wellbeing.
The BMA model Fatigue and Facilities Charter includes recommended best practice and, while not mandatory, can be used to support an awareness campaign on good sleep practices.
Our charter outlines simple steps that can be taken to improve facilities and reduce fatigue, so you can safely, effectively and efficiently care for your patients.
Download the full Fatigue and Facilities Charter