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June 23, 1989

Residents' Work Schedules

JAMA. 1989;261(24):3548. doi:10.1001/jama.1989.03420240062014

To the Editor.—  The recent editorial "No Turning Back: A Blueprint for Residency Reform" by Dr McCall1 is alarming in its encouragement of a hasty approach toward changing medical residency programs. In addition to the serious questions raised about instituting untested guidelines, this approach also is disturbing for its lack of emphasis on the importance of retaining the basic tenets of training that have helped develop the quality of care present in this country today. While the present system has had problems coping with the increasing numbers of admissions and the more acutely ill nature of populations, we are still training fine physicians in programs based on the teachings of dedicated academicians and the examples of clinical mentors. There has been much debate as to how this traditional system needs to be changed to diminish house-staff stress and help physicians meet the demands of a more-educated medical consumer, but