September 29, 2009

Hospital ‘July Phenomenon’ a myth

The so-called July Phenomenon, an increase in hospital mistakes due to an influx of new medical school graduates, is a myth, U.S. researchers say.

The study, published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons, finds no evidence of July Phenomenon.

The results of our study add to a growing body of evidence suggesting that the July Phenomenon does not exist in major trauma centers with appropriate guidance and supervision of residents, study researcher Dr. Peter Fischer of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis says in a statement.

Data from a trauma registry were used to compare outcomes by month and quarter among 12,525 blunt trauma patients admitted and discharged during the same month from 2001-2006. The study did not find any statistical evidence any month or quarter of the academic year that was an independent predictor of mortality.

Also, linear regression analysis revealed no monthly variations in the number of ventilator-support days, days in critical care or minutes in the resuscitation room in July compared with results for other months of the year, the study says.