An epic story told by a unique voice in American medicine, One Doctor describes life-changing experiences in the career of a distinguished physician. In riveting first-person prose, Dr. Brendan Reilly takes us to the front lines of medicine today.
Whipsawed by daily crises and frustrations, Reilly must deal with several daunting challenges simultaneously: the extraordinary patients under his care on the teeming wards of a renowned teaching hospital; the life-threatening illnesses of both of his ninety-year-old parents; and the tragic memory of a cold case from long ago that haunts him still.
As Reilly's patients and their families survive close calls, struggle with heartrending decisions, and confront the limits of medicine's power to cure, One Doctor lays bare a fragmented, depersonalized, business-driven health-care system where real caring is hard to find.
Every day, Reilly sees patients who fall through the cracks and suffer harm because they lack one doctor who knows them well and relentlessly advocates for their best interests.
Filled with fascinating characters in New York City and rural New England-people with dark secrets, mysterious illnesses, impossible dreams, and many kinds of courage - One Doctor tells their stories with sensitivity and empathy, reminding us of professional values once held dear by all physicians.
But medicine has changed enormously during Reilly's career, for both better and worse, and One Doctor is a cautionary tale about those changes. It is also a hopeful, inspiring account of medicine's potential to improve people's lives, Reilly's quest to understand the "truth" about doctoring, and a moving testament to the difference one doctor can make.
©2013 Brendan Reilly, M.D. (P)2014 Tantor
Tangential, eclectic, avid listener... favorite book is the one currently in ear.
Dr. Reilly has distilled a life time of his knowledge, experience and insight into this enlightening and engaging book about health care. Although full of interesting experiences from his practice, this is not similar to a James Herriot book... you have to think and process... he has many messages that need saying in todays world. I will also mention here that his account weaves like a macramé and if you don't listen closely you will miss threads that you really need to remember - I re-wound multiple times to get back into gear.
I've been a nurse about as long as "Brenden" has been a doctor and his writing is truth, not sugar coated... I have been right there facing the same challenges. He has expressed the things I would like to tell my aging parents, siblings and children (most especially the son with the MD behind his name) in a way I never could. There are no pat answers found here, rather he shares stories that raise questions and cause you to think about "your doctor," family, choices, guilt, aging, death, resources, quality of life and the bizarre practice of medicine in the United States.
So very glad to have found this book.
Rob Shapiro's performance did not seem like a performance; it seemed like I was in the room with Dr. Reilly. Spot on.
The landscape of medicine will continue to change dramatically over the coming decade, but there are some things we would do well to retain. Foreseeing these changes, Dr. Reilly has distilled the most salient lessons from his many years of experience. These he conveys mostly through stories, pausing where necessary to expound on some important point. As a physician in training -and as a young man with many years ahead- I am grateful that he has taken me aside to tell me a few things.
Dr. Reily has followed the most famous rule of writing: show, don't tell. He uses examples from his long career to illustrate the way that medicine has changed, how it is broken and what might or might not be done to fix it. I'll be buying several copies to give at the holidays. I really consider this a must read.
This book sets out to explain how clinicians (physicians) think when assessing a patient. How they come to conclusions and the joy or angst re: outcome. I'm a retired RN and I identified w/ these trials. I would recommend this anyone who can handle the truth. Physicians, Nurses etc are people subject to error and also amazing hard won ability to critical thinking, problem solving and to guiding a patient in the direction of improving health.
The book is written in a novel format not as a didactic; and the author is certainly not a pedant.
Yes it held my attention throughout. If I had the time I would have listened in one sitting easily.
I enjoyed this audiobook greatly. I loved hearing the stories about the different patients. There were times I was so wrapped in their stories that I got annoyed when the author swerved off into a new background story; but I soon learned that his sidebars only made the story better.
The narrator was excellent and I would (and have) recommended this book!
Hi! I'm Casey Keller, semi-retired TV writer, avid cyclist, husband and father. I'm also a guy who devours audio books.
Brendan Reilly, M.D. is a man with a lot to say, all of it fascinating, insightful and beautifully said.
Using story after story from his own experiences as a physician in hospital and private practice, Reilly laments the depersonalization of modern American medicine as it struggles to become more cost efficient and profitable.
Reilly calls himself a dinosaur because he still believes people should have their own doctors, someone who knows them, their health objectives and their end of life choices. He criticizes the way existing systems let patients' records fall through the cracks, And in doing this, he is harder on himself than anyone else.
But don't expect dry prose or clinical jargon. Dr. Reilly is a terrific story teller. He's gifted with a lovely way with words, a feel for dialog and a great love for his profession.
Download this book and I promise you won't be disappointed.
Newly retired, I am a reading fiend! I like many types of books, both fiction and non-fiction, with the exception of romance and fantasy
I imagine this audiobook is as close as one can get to a peek into a doctor's world. Dr. Brendan Reilly has written an intensely personal and honest book. This is no light-hearted or fluffy read. It covers serious issues that are difficult to talk or even think about.
A large part of Reilly's story involves a personal case of his in which he questions if his oversights played a role in the patient's death. You can clearly see how he agonizes over the details of the case and what he might have done differently. I find it very brave of him to admit possible errors in treating this elderly couple who were more to him than just his patients. I felt that perhaps writing of their story was somewhat therapeutic for Dr. Reilly.
The book covers many other topics that are relevant, hot issues in modern medicine. Such issues include but are not limited to end of life decision-making, unnecessary waste of hospital resources, and the impersonality of current medical care. He discusses other difficult and interesting cases whose outcomes caused him concern and worry.
Add to this fascinating and moving book a narrator you won't soon forget and this becomes a must read. It is hard to imagine that narrator Rob Shapiro is not the actual author of the book. He becomes Dr. Reilly and gives an amazing performance.
I don't think my review even does this book justice. If any of what I have written spikes any interest for you, I highly recommend you get this audiobook. I believe I can safely say, "You won't be sorry!"
This is simply one of the best books I've listened to in a long time. The narrative is well written and genuine. Dr. Reilly doesn't hesitate to reveal true emotion or turn criticism toward himself when he feels he deserves it. The patient stories overlap in such way that the listener begins to get a feel for how complex and demanding a caring physician's life must be. One of the best autobiographical medical books I've come across, and the narrator is extraordinarily good.
Entertaining, informative, even suspenseful in it's way. The author does an excellent job of weaving past and present, personal and professional, and the voice of the narrator is perfect.
Tommy is an artist living and working in Pinehurst, NC
I rarely listen to books but I got this when I joined Audible. I love books about medicine, doctors, etc.
This book is excellent and weaves together family, medicine, the history of medicine and the problems we have today and will have.
I recommend it on audio. I think otherwise you may miss important parts.
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