This post is not remotely 'religious' even though the word 'god' is in it. So.......
John Updike's introduction to the 2010 Berkley/Penguin edition of The House of God, by Samuel Shem:
We expect the world of doctors. Out of our own need, we revere them; we imagine that their training and expertise and saintly dedication have purged them of all the uncertainty, trepidation, and disgust that we would feel in their position, seeing what they see and being asked to cure it. Blood and vomit and pus do not revolt them; senility and dementia have no terrors. It does not alarm them to plunge into the slippery tangle of internal organs, or to handle the infected and contagious. For them, the flesh and its diseases have been abstracted, rendered coolly diagrammatic and quickly subject to infallible diagnosis and effective treatment.
The House of God is a book to relieve you of these illusions; it does for medical training what Catch-22 did for the military life - displays it as farce, a melee of blunderers laboring to murky purpose under corrupt and platitudinous superiors. In a sense The House of God is more outrageous that Catch-22, since the military has long attracted (indeed, has forcibly drafted) detractors and satirists, whereas medical practitioners as represented in fiction are generally benign, often heroic, and at worst of drolly dubious efficacy, like the enthusiastic magus Hofrat Behrens of Thomas Mann's The Magic Mountain.
A poster in a Lyme forum said this---- and I agree.
"There is a sizable minority of educated people who realize that medicine itself, not just the American and corporate approach to it, is going rather seriously awry, even judging by simple standards of practicality and common sense, let alone how it looks when one examines the science. But there are not enough of us to make a difference, yet.
I don't have any easy solution to offer; but I think it's silly to avoid articulating a problem, just because an obvious solution doesn't immediately spring to mind."
Take the last paragraph:
Avoidance is antithesis to learning. Articulation of a problem should lead to an intelligent discussion but is often derided or declared 'too scary' to contemplate. And no one learns anything.
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