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Amazing piece about Boston's hospitals.


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Atul Gawande has a column up at the New Yorker explaining why the death toll from the marathon bombing was so low. The staff of Boston's hospitals did a truly amazing job of anticipating what would be needed of them and swinging into action.




I love the description in the article of the Chief of Emergency Medicine showing up expecting to give orders, and finding that everyone had already swung perfectly into action without him. The OR nurses heard the first words of the news coverage and figured out that they'd probably need more vascular and orthopedic surgery setups than anything else. The X-ray techs and patient transport staff showed up on duty without anyone calling them. Even the drug reps were mobilized, for heaven's sake.


It's strange to me that we have a persistent belief, in our culture, that crises turn people stupid, vicious, and selfish - that we imagine human kindness and decency are a thin veneer of civilization that can be instantly scraped away. How many times has reality shown us that the majority of people respond to disasters with courage, intelligence, compassion, and generosity?

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Thanks for posting this!! It's wonderful to hear about these amazing people!


Glad to hear that the nurses and other staff are being given credit. I'm so, so tired of watching hospital shows (especially Grey's Anatomy) where the nurses do nothing but sleep with doctors, spread venereal diseases, and go on strike.

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