Falling asleep on stretchers actually is bad luck.
Medical interns and residents work notoriously long shifts. Most interns and residents work 80 to 100 hours a week or more. A single shift can last as long as 28 consecutive hours. Yikes!
As you might expect, working in the medical profession can be exhausting. Unfortunately, sleep deprivation is fairly common among doctors, which can lead to medical mistakes and misdiagnoses.
In 1984, a young woman named Libby Zion died while under the care of sleep-deprived doctors. The landmark case brought attention to the problem posed by overworked, overtired doctors and highlighted the need for reform. Though some changes have been made, it remains a fact that medical interns and residents are forced to work ridiculously long hours.
On-call rooms with couches and bunkbeds provide hospital staff with a place to rest while they are on call. So, there’s no need to pass out on a stretcher!
That’s good news, since it’s supposedly bad luck to fall asleep on a stretcher. According to superstition, if you fall asleep on a stretcher then you might end up being hospitalized as a patient on a stretcher yourself.
Photo source: ABC