Intended for healthcare professionals

Views & Reviews Medical Classics


BMJ 2010; 340 doi: (Published 23 June 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c3245
  1. Anthony Papagiannis, respiratory physician, St Luke’s Hospital, Thessaloniki, Greece
  1. antpap56{at}

    Intern is the authentic chronicle of the internship year of a young US doctor, Alan Nourse (1928-1992), who later made a name for himself in science fiction. He recorded his journal on audiotape in real time (I suppose today he might have posted it in a blog), had it duly typed by his ever patient wife, and published it under the name of “Dr X,” anonymising as many details as possible. This wasn’t just to protect patients’ confidentiality: with the zeal and naivety of a neophyte he pulls no punches in describing the blunders, the sloppy manners of staff (his politically incorrect remarks about nurses …

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