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Working Time Directive

The Working Time Directive (WTD) requires that employers limit working hours of staff to work no more than 48 hours/week on average. This is a significant reduction in hours for most doctors and trainees, compared to before the directive’s implementation. The directive is having a considerable impact on both service delivery and training – particularly in the craft specialties such as surgery. Key concerns for the College include difficulty in maintaining continuity of care for patients and receiving appropriate training within shortened hours.

Read further information on the background to the rulings, requirements and opt-out clause.

Queries relating to the directive should be emailed to

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