One of my favorite things to do in my free time is read. Books and stories have always been a big part of my life because of how reading lets you live someone else’s life and see things from their perspective. Through books, I have been to Iran, Palestine, India, and all over the world. I have been trapped on a lifeboat with a tiger, climbed to the top of Mt. Fuji at sunrise, and most recently, spent 30 hours straight in the critical care unit of the hospital. This week’s book recommendation is called The Real Doctor Will See You Now, and is a great easy read that will make you look at your doctor, and the medical field, a little differently.
Matt McCarthy is a first year resident at Columbia University Medical Center. This book chronicles his time as a first year intern cycling through many different care units and the crazy things that happen to him while learning how to save lives. We follow Matt through the critical care unit and learn how to run an arrest, the infectious disease unit where he learns how to empathize with his patients, and the primary care unit where he is challenged to develop a clear picture of his patient’s medical history, to name a few. But really all I need to say to get anyone curious is this: Want to read a book where the first year doctor sticks himself with an HIV needle halfway through his internship? Then this is your book.
The Real Doctor Will See You Shortly feels relatable, even when your life looks a million times different than a doctor’s. It is funny, jarring, and an easy read that keeps you rooting for all the doctors and patients, yet also makes you want to cringe when you think about how hard it is to learn a new job and what it is like to be new at something when the stakes are so high. Reading this book will make you appreciate all doctors and healthcare professionals like you haven’t before, and will shed new light on what goes on behind the curtain in hospitals. I definitely recommend this book for the irony of Matt’s situation and the chance it gives you to walk in the shoes of a brand new doctor.