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The Good Doctor - 36 Hours - Review

The Good Doctor airs Monday night at 9PM CT on ABC

This week’s episode of The Good Doctor tested me in ways that I find hard to explain. I could say the same for last week’s episode which I could not review because the subject matter was a little sensitive and I did not need to add my totally biased and un-researched two cents to it. Monday's episode dealt with something else that I am facing, and I feel much more informed to discuss it a little.

So let’s get to it,

Once again the groups were split into two with doctors Murphy and Reznick working together covering the emergency services under Dr. Yang, while Melendez, Browne, and Park dealt with a very long surgical case. By long I mean the hours it took to perform the surgery. If you have spent any time admitted in a hospital or waiting on a family member, then this episode resonated with you but if you haven’t had that experience then buckle up because it was a bumpy and heartbreaking ride.

In the Melendez led team a patient determined to have children came in to get surgery to hopefully help rid her uterus of the endometriosis that was threatening her chances of conceiving and carrying a pregnancy to term. I have been dealing with endometriosis for two years now and not only is it an agonizing experience but it is also a costly disease to deal with. The patient’s husband was very supportive of her, and you could tell that he was willing to do whatever he could to make his wife’s dream of having a baby happen. Surgery outcomes are unpredictable hence the consent the hospital always requires a patient or their proxy to sign. There was a lot of different things put to the test during this procedure which at the end of it all I think the team handled quite well.

Melendez is a very confident leader, but he had some slip-ups in this episode in my opinion. I understand that this is a learning hospital and he is saving lives while trying to be a good educator, but he dropped the ball when it came to communication with his team. A decision on who would be updating the husband should have been made from the start. Dr. Melendez telling Claire she was better at easing family concerns during tough moments was a bit strange because I find Dr. Park as calming and reassuring as Dr. Browne. He also didn’t handle the nurse who was being insubordinate very well. First of all, there is no circumstance where a primary surgeon will request a scrub out from one of the team members, and they defy. Unless a patient is in danger, then there is entirely no reason for the back and forth with anyone assisting with the surgery. I get that this is entertainment, but it was totally inappropriate primarily because it had been a lengthy procedure and everyone was on edge. Dr. Browne’s handling of the decision for the husband was terrible writing because Browne initially pressed on how much the patient wanted to have a child. Claire making the decision to go ahead with the hysterectomy was tough to watch, but she handled it with grace. My feelings about this are still conflicted, but this isn’t about me so let’s move on.

Watching Dr. Murphy and Resnick work together peacefully was an excellent welcome to the somewhat somber episode. They had to cover the emergency room that had been understaffed and the on-call attending, in this case, Dr. Lim had other personal things to deal with. At least we learned that Lim rides a motorbike, and she was in court for speeding violations. She also is sleeping with the court prosecutor. Shaun is always quick to take charge, but I loved that he wanted to work as a team and also lean on Dr. Lim for advice when he felt they needed it. Morgan, on the other hand, was a bit accommodating with Shaun and did not try to make him look incompetent in front of the patients. I honestly did not understand why she decided to belittle the relationship that Shaun has with Claire and Lea. I don’t think they pity him especially Claire, who is a genuine friend that gives him good advice and Shaun has learned to trust her judgment. Lea, on the other hand, owes Shaun an explanation of why she came back. They had barely known each other when she left, so it was a bit strange to see her come back and shelter at his place for a few days without explanation.

Dr. Glassman had his surgery and we saw how hard being a patient was for him. It’s easy when you are the one responsible for making others better but dealing with others hovering can be irritable. There was also a little bit of a teaser of Glassman’s current mental state which will undoubtedly be addressed in the next episode. He is obviously delirious, and this was evident from how he was restless and also when he started talking to his dead daughter Maddie. Shaun’s love for Glassman and vice versa is something that I think this show portrays very well. His concern for his friend and his well-being was heartwarming. Glassman’s accommodation of Shaun’s lack of respect for boundaries was front and center even when the poor guy was on his sick bed. He sees Shaun and Shaun sees him if that makes sense.

The title of the episode "36 Hours" was crafty in that it didn’t define only the work the surgeons were doing, but it gave us several minor points of views, i.e., patients and caregivers. It was also essential to see how a discussion on how trainees and attending’s can be overworked to the point of exhaustion is handled by Andrews. This is a real significant problem that hospitals have to deal with because of lack of personnel. A physician who has been up for twenty-four hours is tired enough, thirty-six hours is pushing it, and the results might be devasting to a patient.

What did you all think of the episode especially the happenings in the operating room?


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