Sunday, February 17, 2008

House, Nursing Assistant!

Thanks to Mac for letting me publish this article. 

House, Nursing Assistant


House is a reasonably intelligent television show featuring the eponymous lead as a Byronic hero who is never sacked despite his drug abuse, ill manners, television watching, and video gaming, all on the job, because he develops brilliant solutions to apparently impossible medical problems. 


Where House breaks down is its unreality, which is not a criticism because this is a television show.  In House the few nurses do things on computer screens and are never seen giving patient care.  Patients suffer seizures or coronary occlusions only when a team of physicians happens to be in the room.  The hospital in which House works has no admissions staff, nursing assistants, cleaner-uppers, security guards, or bulletin boards.  Each fictional doctor enjoys a spacious, glass-walled office which any real-life physician can only envy, and when said physician needs a crash cart, a suture tray, or a specific medicine it is immediately available.


What if House were more like a real hospital?


House, Nursing Assistant.  House is fired for having a drug problem, even though he saves lives.


House, Pharmacist.  House is fired for being rude, although he saves lives.


House, Cleaning Staff.  House is fired for pausing thirty seconds to watch a bit of soap opera on a patient's television while tidying his fiftieth or so room of his shift, even though skilled and science-based hygiene and maintenance save lives.


House, Hospital Security.  House, after wrestling with drunks most of his shift, is fired for playing a video game on his watch at four in the morning although his presence in a creepy world saves lives.


House, R.N.  House, after helping deliver a baby in E.R., giving resuscitation to a heart-attack victim, getting coughed on by 'flu patients, barfed on by someone with food poisoning, and supervising the care of dozens of other patients, all without lunch or even a potty break, is fired for telling an career FEMA recipient complaining about the formaldehyde in his free trailer that he doesn't even know what formaldehyde is and why doesn't he just open the windows if he doesn't like the new-car smell?


House, Admissions Clerk.  House, after years of loyal service to the same hospital doing his part to help save lives, is fired for not learning Spanish rapidly enough.


Short season, huh?  And now, back to Flipping Homezillas Off the Island.




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