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Lives of Doctor Wives: Call Schedule

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Call Schedule

I know we have talked a lot about crappy schedules and our DrH being busy at work, but I really have no idea what is a "sucky" schedule, what is normal, and what is "I hate you- you are sooo lucky".

We just recieved Tommy's schedule for the first 3 months and every month so far he is on call 6 nights. He presents once or twice each month in lecture and is in clinic around 5 days a month when he is on OB. How does this rate with everyone else's schedule? I know all these dates are on top of his normal daily schedule which is challenging, but I really have no clue what others are experiencing.



Blogger JumpingJane said...

I am fairly new to this but my DrJ is on call 8 times this month, and thats pretty typical, BUT gets a golden weekend this weekend! (Yeay!) I am just happy when he is anything above a Q3. He is Q4 this month. The worst is when he is on call Tuesday night becuase then with meetings Wednesdays it takes longer to get home post call. Depending on the rotation he gets home any time between 6-9pm. (he gets to the hospital about 4am) We havent gotten his schedule for pgy-2 yet.

June 19, 2009 at 9:18 AM  
Blogger Married to a med student - Marissa Nicole said...

Golden weekend meaning he has TWO days off in a row? And what is this Q-_ systems you speak of?

June 19, 2009 at 9:38 AM  
Blogger Davita said...

E is usually on call 5 or 6 times a month. Many times depending on what's going on this is usually sandwiched into a week or so of q2 call. Everyone gets 1 weekend day a month. The intern on service, PGY2s, &PGY3s take primary call. The 4s and 5s do secondary. They have conferences every T and W. Depending on the service, like trauma in the summer, he won't get home until 9pm post call. He goes in around 5am.

June 19, 2009 at 9:41 AM  
Blogger Amanda said...

B was on-call at least every fourth night in rotation when he was in residency, if I remember correctly. He'd work a full day at the hospital, stay there all night (except when he was a fourth year, and he did home call, then), and put in a regular day the next day, usually getting home around 5 or 6 pm. Currently, he's in practice with five other doctors, though one of them is only doing GYN and is taking his own call for his patients. B is on-call about every fourth night, at least one weekend a month, and one Friday/Saturday morning a month. We definitely see him a lot more, especially since when he's post call, he gets to come home rather than go back into the office. It's a very nice schedule (except when he has to stay over for various reasons!).

June 19, 2009 at 9:59 AM  
Blogger Joz1234 said...

In med school during rotations, Ed was on call anywhere from Q3-Q7 depending on the rotation and the week. Usually the Q3 was around the surgery/internal medicine rotations.

Now, in Residency, his schedule is pretty good. Our residency has night call, but it is only from 7pm-7am...so it is only about a 12 hour shift. He still gets a post call day with this to adjust his hours before returning.

We had 1 rotation this year in the SICU where he had 28-30 hour call a couple times a week for about 4 weeks. That sucked.

The important thing to know is that he can also consider how much he wants to work (more than average doctor hours or regular doctor hours or less than average doctor hours--I say "doctor hours" because they don't work your typical 40 hour week, right?) when he is choosing his residency. Different residencies require different things.

Good luck!!

June 19, 2009 at 10:52 AM  
Blogger Married to a med student - Marissa Nicole said...

What are the Qs? What do they mean?

June 19, 2009 at 12:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Q4 means that he in on call once every 4 nights. My boyfriend is in his 2nd year of itnernal medicine residency and he has been on call Q4 for a few months this year (30+hour shifts) but also had a few months of outpatient where he worked 8-6 and had most weekends off.

June 19, 2009 at 1:00 PM  
Blogger Joz1234 said...

in short, the smaller the Q number, the more often a doctor is on call. Depending on the program, call can start at the end of a regular day shift and run until the next morning or later...usually docs have the day after call off (postcall).

So Q2 would be on call every 2 days:
for instance: go in on monday, get home tuesday morning and be off...go to work on wednesday and start call again that night. SUCKS!

June 19, 2009 at 2:30 PM  
Blogger JumpingJane said...

Yes, a golden weekend is when they get both Saturday and Sunday off. Its rare and wonderful.

June 19, 2009 at 4:25 PM  
Blogger Allison said...

I've learned that every place is definitely different!

During my husband's internship year, he was probably on call 4-5 times a month (sometimes a bit more, sometimes less...) That call meant he stayed all night at the hospital and didn't come back home til around the early afternoon of the next day and then he was exhausted and would sleep for the rest of the day - so I'd go about 2 days without really being with him.

Now, on his first year of residency, call is completely different. They take call for a week and do have to go in on weekend mornings but are usually home by early afternoons. During the week nights, there is a chance he could get paged and have to go back to the hospital, but it hasn't happened to much. He does get paged a lot while he is home and has to talk to them over the phone. So, call this year goes from Friday - Thursday.

Call this year is a lot better than last year!!

Oh, and we never had a specific Q system either. :)

June 20, 2009 at 9:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"q" is an abbreviation for a latin word (I believe) meaning "every." So q3 is "every third night," q4 is "every fourth night" etc.

6 nights of call a month isn't bad, depending on how you define a month - is it 28 days or a calendar month. If it's the latter, it's actually a pretty cush schedule (q5). I'm q4 most of the year, q3 in the surgical ICU.

June 21, 2009 at 3:27 PM  
Blogger Melisa said...

Brad is Q5, which has been lovely. Next year he gets to go to Q7. Sweet... The good thing is that he has home call, which I love, even if I don't get to sleep as much. He was on call on Monday and his pager hardly rang. But, he also doesn't get to leave early after a call night. I don't mind. I'd rather have home call anyway. He has a meeting for a couple of hours every Monday. Other that that, he is usually working 12 hours or so a day. I love ENTs hours. :o) Oh, but that doesn't include time he has to study after work...

July 9, 2009 at 2:57 PM  

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