2014 Reith Lectures by Atul Gawande

Harvard surgeon and author Atul Gawande presented four BBC Reith Lectures in 2014 about various aspects of medicine.  It is impossible to read or listen to Gawande and not come away profoundly moved.  You can download the episodes directly from the BBC or from CBC’s radio program Ideas.  Here is an interview with Gawande on the new Medical website Stat.


One thought on “2014 Reith Lectures by Atul Gawande

  1. I have a possibly slightly different perspective on this.

    First i thought ben carson was the greatest surgeon, who was at JHU—he even knows that darwin was inspired by satan, which due to the elimination of mandatory prayer in public schools, many dont know.

    I was at a hosptital a few years ago for my birhtday, since aquired by JHU. i was supposed to be there 3 days for pneumonia (i had been hanging out not very happlily at ‘occupy dc’ in january and february–at least half as a tourist–a sort of waste of time or like going to a zoo, tho ‘inequality’ due to people like piketty becamethe news. ‘we are the 99% ad nauseum–my family had to drve me there since i dont go to hosptials nor had insurance tho i’m now on free dc plan like many here)

    it turned out to be 45 days (only 3500$ /day plus free food and coffee and room service) since i had an extreme allergic reaction and got sepsis and needed a whole lot of blood transfusions and to be put on life support (and i only paid basically for less than 3 days). my bill for 220 g was more than i’ve made in the last 10 or 20 years—but i decided to let the taxpayer pick it up since i couldnt. i did tell the doctors i’l see if i have it in my pocket—they gave me my clothes back except for 1 shoe .’do you take pennies–220?”

    . . i had to get my nurses (from jamaica and haiti mostly, some from ukraine) to help me walk again (it was not in their job description) and show i could since the physical therapists didnt want to deal with me (each time, my stats went way off the radar, but i learned how to deal with it—they preferred working with pliant seniors not fairly well educated hoodrats—when i go to my current doctor for a doctor my BP is 180 (and it should be no more than than 140, so they write a BP prescription ,many of which i’m totally allergic to) but when i go on a hike then its between 120 and 95–the top number of the two–last time they were wondereing if i still had a pulse.)

    the doctors were quite good. amazing technology –they stuck a hole in my back to let out fluid, and a needle up my arm with a camera to near my heart so i could see it on the tv monitor. sortuuh intersting but also gross. had x-rays everyday at 4 am. it took 2 more months to get back to my usual walking rate.

    you wont get 200G spent trying to find a reasonable job in general. .but you probably can it if you get a stroke and end up bedridden with free food service (i had my first cheeseberger in 10 years in the hospital, and last) but you wont get it for hiking. ( i do know how to live off the land quite a bit—found me 2 salamanders this week—a slimy and a red backed, no snakes– though not for food, plus many native edible plants but few are left for winter–saw a red eft last week


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