Medical Student Clinical and Educational Work Hours Policy

To Whom this Policy Applies

All medical students enrolled in clinical programs or electives at the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine (UNR Med).

Who Needs to Know This Policy

Students in the UNR Med Medical Degree (MD) Program, UNR Med faculty (including community faculty), residents, and staff.


To ensure the quality of the learning experience for the students at the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine (UNR Med), students should have sufficient time to pursue self-directed learning activities and to meet personal needs. Additionally, the clinical educational program involves the students in direct patient care activities. As such, the school limits the number of hours a student may participate in clinical activities to create a proper learning environment, to ensure patient safety and to promote student wellness.


This policy aligns with the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Common Program Requirements for resident duty hours for post-graduate year 1 (PGY-1) residents. Therefore, medical students shall follow the current Common Program Requirements, in the Clinical Experience and Education section. The current Requirements are found on the ACGME website The following are topics addressed in the Requirements at the time of this revision:

  1. the maximum hours per week, including both clinical and educational activities,
  2. the maximum hours of continuously scheduled clinical work and educational activities,
  3. the provision of time free from all clinical work and educational activities,
  4. the permission to take home call and count hours spent in travel to and from the hospital towards duty hour limits,
  5. the maximum consecutive overnight shifts,
  6. the provision of time off between scheduled clinical work and educational activities, and so on.


Duty hours: Time spent participating in either clinical work or educational activities related to a clerkship. This does NOT include time spent studying, preparing, reading and/or commuting to/from the hospital or clinic unless the student is called in from home while on home call.

Home call: The student remains available to be called in to the hospital and/or clinic for clinical work if deemed necessary by the supervisor.

In-house call: Duty hours in addition to the regular student work day that are spent within a sponsoring or participating institution.

Responsibilities & Procedures

  • The Clerkship Director is responsible for notifying the students of this policy.
  • Students are responsible for keeping track of their hours.
  • Students will notify the Clerkship Director or Associate Dean of Curricular Affairs immediately, if they are at risk of violating or are violating this policy.
  • The Clerkship Director and the Associate Dean of Curricular Affairs will investigate student reports of duty hour violations, and report back to the Years 3-4 Committee at the next committee meeting regarding details of the violation and action taken to prevent further violations.
  • The Clerkship Director will report quarterly to the Years 3-4 Committee all violations of this policy.