INSIDE BELLEVUE by Sybil & Glen A. Hilken Leek


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Misrepresented as a horror story of what happens to the sick and poor (""he was operated on by an intern""), this is Glen Hilken's report of his stay in Bellevue where there were the usual hospital foul-ups after wino-psycho Hilken, a former ""senior vice-president of the largest p.r. firm in the country,"" wound up there. Salt that statement and others with question marks and you'll find that he landed in the terminal TB ward (there were no beds elsewhere and he did have a lesion on his lungs) before weeks and tests later, the diagnosis was a neurofibroma on the spine. Intern Mancuso did perform the operation but under the supervision of the chief, Fontreaux; more ill-advised seems Hilken's release to his family in Florida with 50 pain pills which he popped almost at once. Nonetheless he went on to complete spiritual and physical recovery since the tumor was benign. (Mme. Leek, incidentally, seems to have ghosted this only literally.) Bellevue represents what it serves--the indigent--and Hilken had doped and drunk himself out of a job into $17,071.58 worth of debts. He's alive and well and on two feet, and the institution remains barely scratched; for a fairer picture of its operation read Don Gold's 1975 documentary, Bellevue.

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 1976
Publisher: Mason/Charter