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From Dr. Haseltine's experiences in hospitals, writer Yaw has developed this account, the story of fictional Dr. Phyllis Donnan, her medical rotations and personal relationships. Women entering medicine still find considerable prejudices but Dr. Donnan's difficulties are clearly a measure of her immaturity as well. Some of the criticisms traditionally leveled at career women (emotionalism, brashness) apply here: she becomes involved with patients and yells in the halls. But she also handles each new assignment willingly and skillfully--her competence is never in question, even when challenged in the OR. Although she adds life to whatever ward she's on, she has no close relationships, just a brief friendship with another woman doctor wrestling with her own inadequacies and a longer lasting lover (her only exercise--""300 calories per act"") used for sexual relief only--which is described in anatomical detail. Furthermore, some efforts to reassure patients reflect a serious insensitivity, as in this misguided remark following a hysterectomy: ""soon you'll be able to screw again."" All the hospital procedures but very little insight.

Pub Date: Nov. 4th, 1976
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin