Fatigue is the body’s natural response to sleep loss. Interruption in the quantity or quality of sleep affects fatigue, which in turn disrupts physical and cognitive functioning. Fatigue not only impairs attention to detail, ability to remain focused, information processing/judgment, and problem-solving, but also memory, reaction time, motivation, communication, mood, and empathy.3–5 

Many factors contribute to fatigue. Topping the list are staffing and workload demands, scheduling (ie, shift length, rotations, consecutive and overtime shifts), and personal issues such as habits and family responsibilities.2,6  In particular, extended shifts (> 8 hours) have been associated with greater fatigue, drowsiness at work, and need for recovery.7,8  Fatigued nurses are at higher risk of making errors6,9,10  (risk increases 3-fold if shifts are > 12.5 hours),11  burnout,12  and work-related injuries...

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