Work Hours Policy

UWSOM Work Hours Policy for Required and Elective Clerkships

The goals of medical students and the faculty of the School of Medicine are one and the same: to get the best medical education possible while not ignoring overall health and happiness. Attention needs to be paid to both duty/work hours and personal time.

Work hour rules, often referred to as the 80 hour work week, were developed for residents. Similar rules were not developed at the national level for medical students. There are obvious differences in terms of goals, reimbursement, and responsibilities between residents and students. Nonetheless, the School's Required Clerkship and Elective Clerkship Committees developed the following guidelines:

Clerkships with Call:

  1. No more than 80 hours of awake time in the hospital or clinic per week.

  2. Post-call, if you did not sleep, go home at the same time as the intern or resident, within 30 hours of starting the prior day.

  3. Post-call, if you slept at least 5 hours, you should stay through the working day.

  4. You should have at least one full day off per week, averaged over a month.

  5. No matter how many hours you have worked, always check out with the team before leaving for the day.

Clerkships without Call:
1. No more than 80 hours of awake time in the hospital or clinic per week.

2. Parking and transportation issues may demand you leave the hospital by a certain time (i.e. shuttle service or security escort service availability).

3. Feel free to come in early or stay late. Family and personal obligations are important and need to be balanced.

4. You should have at least one full day off per week, averaged over a month.

5. No matter how many hours you have worked, always check out with the team before leaving for the day.

Student Work Hours Clause


Hours will not be specifically logged unless you feel it is necessary because of a potential violation. If you are working close to the 80-hour limit, please document your hours for the week in question and present those to your Site Director as soon as possiblel; your work schedule will be modified as appropriate. Also document any violation of the 30-hour policy for overnight call. Further concerns should be brought to the attention of the Clerkship Director. You will be never be discriminated against for following the work hours policy.

Rev: 02/09