The so-called “August effect,” associated with the intake of newly qualified and transitioning junior doctors across the NHS on the same day, is not driven by their working more slowly or coping with a heavier workload, a study has found.
Rather, the UK authors said, poor prioritisation, failure to recognise deteriorating health, and mistakes may account for the increase in deaths and ill health attributed to the changeover in August.
- Blakey JD, Fearn A, Shaw DE. What drives the “August effect”? An observational study of the effect of junior doctor changeover on out of hours work. JRSM Short Reports 2013, doi:10.1177/2042533313489823.