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Regular versus extended shift outbreak roster in the emergency department and its impact on staff well-being
  1. Sohil Pothiawala1,
  2. Hong Khai Lau2,
  3. Annitha Annathurai2
  1. 1 Emergency Medicine, National Healthcare Group Woodlands Health Campus, Singapore
  2. 2 Emergency Medicine, Sengkang General Hospital, Singapore
  1. Correspondence to Dr Sohil Pothiawala, Emergency Medicine, National Healthcare Group Woodlands Health Campus, 768024 Singapore, Singapore; drsohilpothiawala{at}

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An outbreak response roster during pandemic plays a crucial role, with a recent article1 suggesting a 12-hour extended shift model, aiming to limit interactions between healthcare workers. In Singapore, a typical ED shift is around 8–9 hours. Although there are perceived benefits of working 12-hour shifts like reduction in total number of shifts and compressed working week, it can lead to staff experiencing fatigue, psychological distress, performance reduction and increased risk of errors in a busy, fast-paced ED environment.2 Also, there is a potential risk of cross-exposure as team doctors rotate between managing high-risk and low-risk areas.

Handling a pandemic like COVID-19 can …

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