The New York State Health Department has found violations related to resident working hours at 54 of 82 teaching hospitals inspected in the state since last November. New York is the only state that limits residents' work hours; however, the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education plans to adopt similar requirements in 2003. To date, New York has fined 734-bed New York University Medical Center $24,000 for recurring violations, and state health officials said they are reviewing results of the other inspections to see if fines are warranted. Under the 1989 state law, physicians enrolled in residency training programs can work no more than 80 hours per week averaged over a four-week period and no more than 24 consecutive hours. Emergency-department residents are limited to no more than 12 hours without time off. Funding especially earmarked in the state's Health Care Reform Act of 2000 supported the inspections. -- by Cinda Becker
Most N.Y. hospitals work residents past legal limit
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