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Publisher's Summary

San Francisco's Laguna Honda Hospital is the last almshouse in the country, a descendant of the Hôtel-Dieu (God's hotel) that cared for the sick in the Middle Ages. Ballet dancers and rock musicians, professors and thieves - "anyone who had fallen, or, often, leapt, onto hard times" and needed extended medical care - ended up here. So did Victoria Sweet, who came for two months and stayed for 20 years.

Laguna Honda, lower-tech but human-paced, gave Sweet the opportunity to practice a kind of attentive medicine that has almost vanished. Gradually, the place transformed the way she understood her work. Alongside the modern view of the body as a machine to be fixed, her extraordinary patients evoked an older idea of the body as a garden to be tended.

God's Hotel tells their story and the story of the hospital itself, which, as efficiency experts, politicians, and architects descended, determined to turn it into a modern "health care facility", revealed its own surprising truths about the essence, cost, and value of caring for body and soul.

©2012 Victoria Sweet (P)2013 Tantor

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Inspiring

Should be required reading for all people involved in medical professions.
I wish I had read it while I was still practicing nursing. We all need to be taken care of and we need to take care of each other

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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An invaluable perspective

I love the reading of this book.
I thought the content of this book was very insightful into our current healthcare system in America.
i'm very impressed by her life as well. Her accomplishments, The purpose of her work, and the intentionality of her life.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Jonelle
  • Camp Hill, PA, United States
  • 08-11-14

Absolutely fascinating memoir

Absolutely fascinating memoir and portrait of Victoria Sweet's work as a physician at San Francisco's Laguna Honda Hospital as it struggled to move toward a 21st century model of care for those who can least afford it. I'd live to have her as my physician. ..and I'd love to meet her someday. Highly recommended.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Great read

Would you listen to God's Hotel again? Why?

As A health care professional this book explains why I chose this career path. I am truly inspired by Victoria Sweets journey. I have listened to this book multiple times as it inspires me to reach out to my patients each day despite the absolute chaos of our current health care crisis.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Thank you Victoria Sweet

I'm a consumer of medical care. I'm also envious of your patients who received your special "slow medicine" care. So I highly recommend your book "Gods Hospital" to all who want to recognize care that is effective, respectful and humane. May your wisdom spread.











1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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An inspiring survey of possibilities in the practice of medicine

An easy read that is thought provoking and hopeful. Here are glimpses into the personal journeys of approaches to caring and practice of the author and some of her colleagues

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Loved the content

Great book with interesting information and stories
The way the author reads the book is how someone would read to a small child. What happened to the normal speaking voice. It was so grating to me at times I thought I would not be able to listen to the end

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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a lot of insight and promotes introspection

Great point of view when considering the current situation with health care. all hospital admin, nurses, and docs should read.

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More than medicine

Excellent and thoughtful view from a physician who realizes that healing takes more than looking at charts and blood work results. Spending time and being present with others is becoming a lost art in the medical world of enforced efficiency. This story of shared stories is her journey to that realization. Well done doctor. I hope many healers read this and learn from you. I am concerned that the art of healing is being lost, but if more share stories like this it will help. Healing needs to find something more than a business model for health care to improve in quality

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A heartwarming and intimate look into how doctors view their patients and how administration affects care