After four years of discussions - ARBITRATION RULING TO ELIMINATE 24-HOUR CALL DUTY FOR QUEBEC MEDICAL RESIDENTS

MONTREAL, June 8, 2011 /CNW Telbec/ - « It took four years since the first grievance was submitted in May 2007 by one of our colleagues to get the establishments and the government to recognize the risks associated with 24-hour in-house call duty for medical residents, said Dr Charles Dussault, president of the Fédération des médecins residents du Québec (FMRQ). Experts on the impact of sleep deprivation were called in from the United States and Great Britain, as well as experts based in Québec, in order to convince the authorities of the importance of our demands.

The president of the FMRQ indicated that, with this ruling, the maximum number of consecutive hours a medical resident will now be obligated to work will be limited at 16 hours. In addition, the ruling by Me Jean-Pierre Lussier states that changes need to be made to call duty schedules in order to limit them to 16 consecutive hours within the next six months. "With this ruling, continued Dr Dussault, patients will be cared for by physicians who are not sleep deprived. This means better care for patients and more healthy conditions for medical residents".

"This is a first in Canada, Dr Dussault went on to say. There are some medical establishments where 16-hour call duty has been put in place, but there are no rules or collective agreements in Canada, as far as I know, that limit call duty schedules to 16 hours. We are very pleased for all medical residents in Quebec, he concluded, and believe that this is the first step towards better working conditions for us, for our colleagues from other Canadian provinces and the United States, as well as for medical students"

Fédération des médecins résidents du Québec
The Fédération des médecins résidents du Québec brings together the four medical resident associations of the medical faculties of the University of Montreal, McGill University, the University of Sherbrooke and Laval University in Quebec City. It has some 3,000 members, of whom 38% are men and 62% women. A quarter of the Federation's membership are headed for family medicine practice, while the remainder are pursuing training in one of the 53 other specialties recognized in Quebec. The duration of postgraduate education in family medicine is two years, while specialist physicians' training ranges from five to six years, depending on the chosen specialty.

SOURCE FEDERATION DES MEDECINS RESIDENTS DU QUEBEC

For further information:

Source:
Dr Charles Dussault, President
Fédération des médecins résidents du Québec
   
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Johanne Carrier
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Fédération des médecins résidents du Québec
514 282-0256 or 1 800 465-0215
514 751-9983 (pager)
514 591-0502 (cell.)

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