When You Are Sick

Sick days are not vacation days.

When a house officer is sick, it is not to be recorded as vacation.  Each paid and unpaid benefit has been negotiated separately, as part of your employment contract with the University.

Sickness of 4 days or less is not considered a serious illness.  Excessive absenteeism may result in an extension of your training program and is up to the discretion of your program director.  The actual contract language is provided below.


When a House Officer is unable to work due to illness or injury and certain criteria are met, certain paid sick leave shall be available. It is in our mutual interest that House Officers are both encouraged and supported by their programs and colleagues to not work when acutely ill (e.g., is contagious, dehydrated, or vomiting, or has diarrhea). We acknowledge that there is a shared responsibility of both Faculty and House Officers to assure coverage during this absence. It is also noted, however, that excessive absenteeism may result in corrective action.

Each department has a responsibility to it's employees to establish a clearly documented process by which vacation time is approved and scheduled.  As a matter of professionalism, a house officer is responsible for resolving any discrepancies well in advance. 


Vacation shall be scheduled to meet the requirements of the employer on a departmental basis with due consideration given to the employee's wishes as to time and duration. The actual scheduling of vacations shall be the responsibility of the department chairman or equivalent level of supervision. Such vacations will be scheduled as a regular and routine part of service assignments over the course of the year. Vacations are not cumulative and can only be taken during the current vacation period. Nothing herein shall be interpreted to limit vacation entitlement as outlined in this Article.