UC Davis researcher Patrick Romano and Veterans Administration investigators have found that new national regulations limiting work hours for physicians-in-training did not lead to increased patient deaths. That is one of the conclusions contained in two studies that appeared in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Although residents are working fewer hours and getting more sleep, fewer residents are on call at any one time, prompting more patient handoffs due to shorter schedules. Many were concerned that this may harm patient care. Analyzing over 8 million patient hospitalizations in the Medicare system and over 300,000 hospitalizations in the Veterans Affairs (VA) System, investigators found that duty-hour regulations for medical residents in the VA System significantly improved patient mortality. However, these regulations were not associated with either significant worsening or improvement in mortality for Medicare patients, said Romano, who was a co-author of the two studies.