Singular Intimacies: Becoming a Doctor at Bellevue

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Beacon Press, 2003 - Biography & Autobiography - 246 pages
In the tradition of Abraham Verghese and Atul Gawande, a gripping memoir of learning medicine in the trenches
Singular Intimacies is the story of becoming a doctor by immersion at Bellevue Hospital, the oldest public hospital in the country--and perhaps the most legendary. It is both the classic inner-city hospital and a unique amalgam of history, insanity, beauty, and intellect. When Danielle Ofri enters these 250-year-old doors as a tentative medical student, she is immediately plunged into the teeming world of urban medicine: mysterious illnesses, life-and-death decisions, patients speaking any one of a dozen languages, overworked interns devising creative strategies to cope with the feverish intensity of a big-city hospital.
Yet the emphasis of Singular Intimacies is not so much on the arduous hours in medical training (which certainly exist here), but on the evolution of an instinct for healing. In a hospital without the luxury of private physicians, where patients lack resources both financial and societal, where poverty and social strife are as much a part of the pathology as any microbe, it is the medical students and interns who are thrust into the searing intimacy that is the doctor-patient relationship. In each memorable chapter, Ofri's progress toward becoming an experienced healer introduces not just a patient in medical crisis, but a human being with an intricate and compelling history. Ofri learns to navigate the tangled vulnerabilities of doctor and patient, not simply battle the disease.
Dr. Danielle Ofri is an attending physician in the medical clinic at Bellevue, with an academic appointment at NYU. She is the co-founder and editor-in-chief of the Bellevue Literary Review, and her essays have been published in over a dozen literary and medical journals; one chapter of this book was selected by Stephen Jay Gould for The Best American Essays of 2002 and received the Missouri Review Editor's Prize for Nonfiction. She is also associate chief editor of the award-winning textbook The Bellevue Guide to Outpatient Medicine.

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User Review  - hgoldsmith - www.librarything.com

Ofri's first book; tells the story of her "becoming a doctor at Bellevue," starting with her truncated third-year residency (after she completed the PhD part of her MD/PhD). It's a collection of ... Read full review

SINGULAR INTIMACIES: Becoming a Doctor at Bellevue

User Review  - Kirkus

Heartwarming memoirs of a young woman's years at a venerable New York City hospital, where she is transformed from bewildered medical student to assured physician.Ofri, an attending physician at ... Read full review

Contents

prologue Possessing Her Words
1
THREE StUCk
33
eleven Finding the Person
161
Copyright

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About the author (2003)

Danielle Ofri, MD, PhD, DLitt (Hon), is an attending physician in the medical clinic at Bellevue Hospital, and Assistant Professor of Medicine at New York University School of Medicine. She divides her time between seeing patients, teaching medical students and residents, editing and writing. Dr. Ofri is the Editor-in-Chief and co-founder of the Bellevue Literary Review.

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