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Table 4 Summary of the key studies on pages and calls placed to residents

From: Patient severity matters for night-shift workload for internal medicine residents in Taiwan

Author, year (reference) Observation period Setting and participants Sample size (tool) Endpoint Important results
Libby et al. [9] 56 days Medical service 564 calls (pager) Importance of call Nearly 60% of the calls were not relevant to patient care.
13 interns The majority of beeper calls do not affect immediate patient management.
Katz et al. [10] 91 days Internal medicine service in 3 teaching hospitals 1206 calls (pager) Urgency and reasons of pages, and activities interrupted by pages 65% of the pages interrupted patient care.
39 interns Reducing the number of unnecessary pages and postponing nonurgent ones could result in as much as a 42% decrease in the disruption of patient care.
Harvey et al. [11] 1 week 2 teaching hospitals 309 calls (pager) Number and nature of calls The most common reasons were prescribing medications (42%), direct patient assessment (25%), and reporting of laboratory results (18%).
10 interns Paging frequently interrupts work and rest at night.
Beebe et al. [14] 4 months Multiple services in one children hospital Nurses 849 calls (pager) Urgency rating of calls Nurses’ ratings of the urgency of calls are not good predictors of physician response.
Wong et al. [16] 6 weeks GIM service 6392 calls$ Proportion of text pages, sources of page, page disruption, satisfaction 52% were text pages.
All health staff (alpha-numeric pager) 93% of the pages among physicians were text pages.
There was a 29% reduction in disruptive pages sent during educational rounds.
Patel et al. [19] 18 months General surgery service 9843 calls (pager) Sender type, message type, Page quality As pager volume increased, there was a decrease in the number of pages received per patient.
6 interns At higher patient volumes, there was a trend toward an increasing percentage of urgent pages per patient.
  1. $There were 1431, 3692 and 1269 pages before, during and after implementation, respectively.
  2. Abbreviations: GIM general internal medicine.