There is alot of reserch been done in to 12 hour shifts in nursing and it is inconclusive but her are some of the Key points that the RCN (Royal Collage of Nursing) has showen in their publication "shifting patterns"
some nurses may be physiologically unsuited to 12 hour shifts.
shifts should never exceed 12-hours
each 12 hour shift should be followed by at least a 12 hour continuos off duty. with a maximum of 3 12 hour shifts in a 72 hour period.
wher 4 12 hour shifts are worked on consecutive days a break of at least 60 uninterruped hours off should follow.
There are some nurses who love the shifts and the extra time off but we found it difficult to cover shifts for sicknesss and we were not able to ask nurses to stay on at the end of a shift as they were too tired.
12 hour shifts have been showen to have protentially serious health and other problems due to sleep deficieny
I work in an inviroment where we have a number of shift patterns to meet the services and staffs needs. the core shifts are 8 hour with some staff doing 10 hrs, we then have part time staff who can do 4 hour or 5 hour shifts at busy times to help this fits in with the services needs and family needs of the nurses.
The UK already has a shortage problem and shifts is one of the problems but there are many more reasons why nurses leave nursing.
I am part of BIN There ( back injuried nurses) discussion group which has been set up by an American nurses and myself. we are both BIN There nurses and Anne my friend says that she feels her employer look on nurses as a disposable commidty when it came to protecting them from injuries due to heavy lifting. If one gets injuried get read and there are lots more. May be that is why they are not worried about burn out from 12 hour shifts, or looking into family friendly policies. Why not come and look at BIN There its on www.phli-e-slid.com
by the way phli e slide gave use the space they have no input into it is is for nurses to use and take and support each other where ever in the world you are.
Hope to see some of you there