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The Arts and Medicine
July 10, 2019

The House of God at Age 40—An Appreciation

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Emergency Medicine, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts
JAMA. 2019;322(6):488-489. doi:10.1001/jama.2019.8156

Less medicine is better medicine. Physical examination maneuvers are more performative than informative. Hospital administrators give lip service to combating burnout while quietly supporting its underlying causes. Physicians complete suicide.

These seemingly modern concepts are documented in a novel that recently celebrated its 40th anniversary, Samuel Shem’s classic depiction of his internal medicine internship year, The House of God1 (Samuel Shem is the pen name of psychiatrist Stephen Bergman).

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