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Is It Time to Pull the Plug on 12-Hour Shifts?: Part 1. The Evidence

Geiger-Brown, Jeanne PhD, RN; Trinkoff, Alison M. ScD, RN, FAAN

JONA: The Journal of Nursing Administration: March 2010 - Volume 40 - Issue 3 - p 100-102
doi: 10.1097/NNA.0b013e3181d0414e
Departments: Spotlight On

Shift durations of 12 hours or more are now ubiquitous in hospitals, with currently working staff nurses reporting satisfaction with this shift length, although others who prefer shorter work hours have generally left hospital nursing. Nurse administrators are beginning to question the wisdom of having nurses work extended hours. In part 1 of this 2-part series, the authors provide an update on recent findings that challenge the current scheduling paradigm that supports unsafe long work hours. Part 2 discusses obstacles that nurse administrators face when they "buck the 12-hour trend" and offers guidance for introducing work schedule changes.

Authors' Affiliation: Associate Professor (Dr Geiger-Brown), Professor (Dr Trinkoff), Work & Health Research Center, Department of Family and Community Health, University of Maryland School of Nursing, Baltimore.

Corresponding author: Dr Geiger-Brown, University of Maryland School of Nursing, 655 W Lombard St, Suite 575C, Baltimore, MD 21201 (

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