The Hospital Script - Dialogue Transcript

Voila! Finally, the The Hospital script is here for all you quotes spouting fans of the Paddy Chayefsky movie starring George C. Scott.  This script is a transcript that was painstakingly transcribed using the screenplay and/or viewings of The Hospital. I know, I know, I still need to get the cast names in there and I'll be eternally tweaking it, so if you have any corrections, feel free to drop me a line. You won't hurt my feelings. Honest.

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The Hospital Script

             On Monday morning,  a patient named Guernsey...

             male, middle 70s, was admitted  to the hospital complaining of chest pains.

             He had been referred by a nursing home...

             where the doctor had  diagnosed his condition as Angina pectoris.

             It is axiomatic...

             that nursing-home doctors  are always wrong.

             The intern who admitted  Mr. Guernsey, however...

             accepted the diagnosis  and prescribed morphine...

             a drug suitable for angina,  but not at all suitable for emphysema...

             which is unfortunately  what the old man actually had.

             Within an hour, the patient  became unresponsive and diaphoretic...

             and was raced up to Intensive Care,  with an irregular pulse of    ...

             blood pressure    over     respiration rapid and shallow.

             The resident on duty in Intensive Care  compounded the blunder...

             by treating the old man  for pulmonary edema.

             He gave him digitalis, diuretics and oxygen.

             This restored the old man's color.

             He was sent to his room  in the Holly Pavilion...

             ruddy-complected and peacefully asleep.

             But the patient was in CO   narcosis,  and died at  :   that evening.

             I mention all this only to explain  how the bed in Room     became available.

             The intern involved  was a prickly young buck named Schaefer...

             who had a good thing going for him  with a technician in the Hematology Lab.

             In the haphazard fashion  of hospital romances...

             Dr. Schaefer had been zapping this girl...

             on wheelchairs, stretchers, pantry shelves...

             in the kitchen, in the morgue,  in the dark corners of corridors...

             standing up, sitting down...

             So you can imagine  what an available bed meant to him.

            Sheila, this is Howard.

            I got a bed for us for tonight. A real, honest-to-God bed.

            Dr. Schaefer...

            Did you know that Dr. Schaefer was in Room     because he's dead?


            I'm just telling you that Dr. Schaefer is dead.

            - What do you want, Perez? - I don't know what this is about...

            but Dr. Schaefer is in Room     with an IV running, and he's dead.

            - I didn't even know he was sick. - What the hell are you talking about?

            - Do you know what she's talking about? - No.

            Maybe I'm going crazy. I don't know.

            Isn't Room     the patient Guernsey?

            Did something happen that maybe I didn't know about?

            I don't know what you're talking about.

            This is the nuttiest thing I ever saw. Dr. Schaefer is in Room     dead.

            What Dr. Schaefer? Our Dr. Schaefer?

            Our Dr. Schaefer. The one who's always grabbing everybody's ass.

            - Do you know what she's talking about? - No.

            I don't know what you're talking about.

            What do you mean, "Dr. Schaefer's in Room     dead"?

            I mean, he's lying on the far bed, stone dead, and with an IV.

            If you don't believe me, you ought to go and look for yourself.

            Maybe you'd better call Mrs. Christie.

            Dr. Bock.

            Yes, Mrs. Christie, what is it?

            It's all right. I'd have to be getting up any minute, anyway.

            Sorry, I missed that. Would you say it again, please?

              I know.

              Schaefer, the stud with the glasses, fancies all the nurses.

              I'm afraid I don't understand. What do you mean?

              Was he sick?

              I mean...

              What was the cause of death?

              Was he being treated? I don't understand.

              What was he doing in the bed? You did say...

              Mrs. Christie, did you call the office?

              Good, I'll...

              It's all right.

              I'd be getting my wake-up call any minute, anyway.


              What do you say, Sundstrom?

              How long do you think your monopolistic, exclusionary, racist policies will work?

              Free the hope!

              Now, hold it.

              Herb! I'm glad I caught up with you.

              How's it going?

              One of my interns dropped dead this morning.

              Really? I'm sorry to hear that.

              I understand you moved out to a hotel.

              - Things got that bad with Phyllis? - It's been that bad for    years.

              You gonna be solicitous?


              I'm the guy that brought you into this hospital...

              so I think I can skip the diplomatic overtures.

              Marty stopped me in the hall yesterday, very upset.

              He had just had lunch with you. He said you sounded suicidal.

              Marty tends to be extravagant, but he's not the only one.

              Jack Singer mentioned that you were boozing it up a lot.

              Let's face it, you have been sloughing off.

              I understand you haven't even been doing rounds.

              I'm going to do rounds today.

              Do you want to take a couple of days off?

              Go down to Montego Bay, get drunk, get laid, get a little sun?

              For God's sake, I'm    years old, with all the attendant fears.

              I just left my wife, after    years. A standard case of menopausal melancholy.

              - Maybe you wanna see Einhorn. - Don't wanna see a psychiatrist, don't worry.

              If I just get to work, I'll be fine. I'm sorry if I caused you concern.

              Sid called from St. Luke's. He said the demonstrators there...

              - are planning a march to join those here. - God.

              - Did you call the cops? - Sure.

              - They're all in     Doctor. - What happened?

              I think I'll just let Mrs. Christie tell you about it.

              Oh, boy, what happened?

              I've seen some pretty good snafus. But this one...

              There's a certain splendor to this one.

              One of the night nurses thought he was a patient...

              and plugged an IV into him. He was a diabetic.

              What do you mean she plugged an IV into him?

              It's a really screwed-up story.

              We had an old man in there who died last night.

              So the bed was available. You know Schaefer. He's Sammy Stud.

              He talked a nurse into zapping him on the bed?

              A girl from Hematology he's been running around with.

              - God, it's a Roman farce! - I thought I heard you out here.

              I suggest you do that right now.

              I'm so terribly sorry.

              As I understand it...

              a nurse inadvertently administered an IV to Schaefer. How could that happen?

              - We ought to straighten this out elsewhere. - Very good idea.

              Oh, God, what a mess!

              - These things happen. - I'd better call the Medical Examiner.

              - I still don't understand what happened. - It took us an hour to get it sorted out.

              A patient named Guernsey died last night, in    .

              That information wasn't given to the night nurses. These things happen.

              At any rate, according to the cardex...

              the patient, Guernsey, was down for    mg of Sparine at q.  h.

              Mrs. Reardon sent Nurse Perez to give him his   :   shot.

              In the meantime, Dr. Schaefer usurped that particular bed...

              for his own purposes.

              Dr. Brubaker suggests it was for a love tryst...

              and some weight is given that hypothesis...

              - by the fact that Dr. Schaefer was naked. - I get the drift.

              Nurse Perez went in and sedated Dr. Schaefer...

              thinking it was the patient Guernsey. What I don't understand...

              May I finish, please?

              After Perez gave him his shot, she noticed the IV was pinched off on the bed.

              She reported this to Mrs. Reardon...

              who then assigned Nurse Rivers to restart the IV.

              Rivers was a float. She didn't even know the staff people on the floor.

              Nobody knew what the patient looked like, since he'd only been admitted that morning.

              - So she plugged an IV into him. - Yes.

              - How much? - A liter.

              Five percent glucose solution won't kill anybody.

              Was he dehydrated? Did he have any ancillary conditions?

              Didn't anybody bother to go check on him during the night?

              Even under the impression that he was merely a patient?

              Was he hyperosmolar? Did he have a bad heart?

              He must have had some sort of thrombosis.

              I want the post done here, Mr. Hitchcock.

              You and I better have a chat about your excessive use of float nurses.

              I've got nearly a thousand nurses in this hospital...

              Every time one of them has her period, she disappears for three days.

              Doctors complain they can't find the same nurse on the same floor...

              two days in a row.

              What am I gonna tell Schaefer's parents?

              That a substitute nurse assassinated him...

              as she couldn't tell the doctors from the patients on the floor?

              My God!

              The incompetence here is absolutely radiant!

              Two nurses walk into a room and stick needles in a man...

              and one of those is a Number    Jelco, tourniquet the poor guy...

              anchor the poor guy's arm with adhesive tape...

              and it's the wrong poor son of a bitch!

              Where do you train your nurses, Mrs. Christie? Dachau?

              All right.

              Wrap him up and get him down to Pathology.

              I'm especially interested in his blood sugar.

              A liter of glucose never killed anybody. Your ladies must have done something else.

              - Will there be anything else? - No.

              Before you call the family, I wish you'd speak to Mr. Mead about this.

              We'd like, naturally, to avoid litigation.

              A few things have been piling up. Would you like to go into them?

              A quickie.

              Dr. Esterhazy wants to start hiring temporary people...

              to cover the summer vacations.

              He says, last year, some of the replacement people...

              didn't receive their checks until they waited six months.

              He wonders if you could do something about getting these people paid promptly.

              Ms. Aronivici complains the lab reports are coming in slow into the ER.

              I called Dr. Immelman about that, and she says three microscopes...

              have been stolen out of her lab in the last two months.

              Charlie Walters also complains about pilferage.

              I've clumped all these together for you.

              As you know...

              we've agreed to take over the local ambulance cases...

              as part of the hospital's commitment to the community...

              and it's created a serious overload in ER.

              I don't know why this was dumped in our lap, but they seem to think...

              Find out if Dr. Einhorn is in his office.

              Which Dr. Einhorn?

              - Ophthalmology or Psychiatry? - Psychiatry. Never mind. I'll look in, myself.

              Is he in?

              - Can I have a minute, Joe? - Of course.

              I've been having periods of acute depression, recently.

              Apparently, it's becoming noticeable. A number of people have remarked about it.

              John Sundstrom thought it might be a good idea if I spoke to you about it.

              - Do you want to sit down? - No. I'm not good at confessional.

              What can I tell you?

              The last year, two, three... It goes way back, I suppose.

              I remember entertaining suicidal thoughts as a college student.

              At any rate...

              I've always found life demanding.

              I'm an only child of a lower-middle-class people.

              I was the glory of my parents. "My son, the doctor"." You know.

              I was always top of my class. Scholarship to Harvard. The boy genius.

              The brilliant eccentric.

              Terrified of women, clumsy at sports.

              God, how do I go about this?

              I understand you just separated from your wife.

              I left her a dozen times.

              She left me a dozen times.

              We stayed through a process of attrition. Obviously, sadomasochistic dependency.

              My home is hell.

              We've got a   -year-old boy. I threw him out of the house last year.

              A shaggy-haired Maoist.

              I don't know where he is.

              Presumably, building bombs in basements as an expression of universal brotherhood.

              I've got a   -year-old daughter who's had two abortions in two years...

              got arrested last week at a rock festival, for pushing drugs.

              They let her go.

              The typical affluent American family.

              I don't mean to be facile about this.

              I blame myself for those two useless young people.

              I never exercised parental authority. I'm no good at that.

              Oh, God, I'm no good at this, either.

              Let's just forget the whole thing. I'm sorry I bothered you.

              How serious are your suicidal speculations?

              I amuse myself with different ways of killing myself that don't look like suicide.

              I wouldn't want to do my family out of the insurance.

              Digitalis will give you an arrhythmia.

              A good toxologist would find traces.

              Potassium's much better.    milli-equivalent. Instantaneous.

              Then you're stuck with how to get rid of the hypodermic.

              Forty milli-equivalent. Gives you time to dispose of the evidence.

              You seem to have given considerable thought to the matter.

              You ought to know that a man who talks about it all the time never does it.

              I don't know. I see a man exhausted...

              emotionally drained, riddled with guilt...

              has been systematically stripping himself of wife, children, friends...

              isolating himself from the world.

              - Are you impotent? - Intermittently.

              - What does that mean? - I haven't tried in so long, I don't know.

              Let's just drop the whole thing, Joe. I feel humiliated and stupid.

              I just got to pull myself together and get back into my work.

              I'm sorry I troubled you. Take care of yourself. I'll see you later.

              Ten-four, save our homes.

              Two, four, we the poor.

              Don't go 'round. Don't tear us down.

              - All set? - Yes, sir.

              - Who was that exotic group? - You got me.

              - They've been here about an hour. - I think they're with the old man in    .

              Dr. Perry said he picked the tuberculosis and liver nodes for today.

              - Yes, sir. - Good, because that's the one I studied up.

              - A hell of a case. - Yes, sir.

              - Who's presenting? - I am, sir. Should I start?

              Mr. Hemmings!

              Is there anybody seated who hasn't been to see me first?

              Is there anybody here who has not given me their health-insurance number?

              Emergency Room.

              I don't know, Sybil. What's his name?

              Wait a moment, please. I'm on the phone.

              Can't you see I'm on the phone?

              I am, Sybil. I'm looking.

              Of course not. Do they ever?

              Would you mind, please? Excuse me.


              Telescope sights. They follow me everywhere.

              Three big Black men. Naked, completely exposed, right in the street.

              Hanging down to their knees. It's disgusting.

              Did you call upstairs and tell them to admit a patient named Mitgang?

              - Is that the concussion? - I don't know.

              They said you didn't fill out the chart.

              Where do you come off sending anyone up to Admitting without my okay?

              Would you get the hell out of here?

              The patient's in the holding room. You want his Blue Cross number, go get it.

              Dr. Spezio, may I see you for a moment, if you don't mind?

              Is this your handwriting, if you don't mind?

              Am I supposed to read this?

              Was that a sprain, a broken wrist? I can't read that scribbling.

              I have to bill these people.

              I know you are the ministering angels...

              and I'm the bitch from the accounting department, but I've a job, too.

              If you don't mind, Doctor.

              The kid had a colly fracture, we had him in the OR.

              We reduced it, and we gave him a small cast.

              But did you give him a sling? You must've taken x-rays.

              How am I supposed to make out the charges?

              - Are you Mitgang? - I'm Mitgang.

              Do you carry Blue Cross Blue Shield, if you don't mind?

              Do you have your card with you?

              Do you know your number?

              You are not leaving this room until I have this information.

              Do you mind if I at least ask this gentleman to fill out his chart?

              May I have your AHS policy number, sir?

              Do you carry Blue Cross Blue Shield?

              Dr. Spezio!

              I think one of your patients in here is dead.

              Why do you say that, Mrs. Cushing?

              Because he wouldn't give me his Blue Cross number.


              How long has this man been lying here?

              Isn't he the doctor that came in around  :  ?

              "Pete's sake," I said, "This is a hospital. One of our feed lines just blew"."

              We were lucky to trace it in time.

              Have we covered everything?

              Dr. Kish has been driving me nuts about the OR schedule.

              He's supposed to see me about that.

              This is the Emergency Room. One of the doctors died of a heart attack.

              - One of our staff? - I think so.

              Tom, you want to go down to the Emergency Room?

              - One of our doctors just died. - Another one?

              See what that's about. I'll be on Holly   and I'll be right back.

              It's no longer pilferage. It's reached the point of piracy.

              - That's the third microscope this month. - Let's get together on this later today.

              - How about  :  ? -  :   will be fine.

              Your brother's in his room.

              - What one is it? -    .

              You're gonna be in the hospital for two lousy days.

              - What's the fuss about? - You're supposed to be a big wheel here.

              The private rooms are full.

              If they brought in Jesus Christ fresh off the cross, I couldn't get him one.

              - I'm not staying in a room with a dying man. - He's not dying.

              They'll screen him off. You won't even know he's here.

              If you want a private room, go home. I'll call you when one comes up.

              But you phoned me, in a panic. You're going on vacation.

              They'll cut this polyp out tomorrow.

              You'll be home Thursday, in Miami Friday.

              - Will you talk some sense into this lunatic? - You said it. He's a lunatic.

              Big wheel! Can't even get me a private room.

              I'll get you a tranquilizer.

              "Five. A full...


              contrasted with wasting elsewhere.

              "Six. Ascites...

              with a protein content above   grams.

              Unexplained anemia, leukopenia.

              Unexplained elevation of the serum gamma globulin level.

              Especially abnormal flocculation tests, and of course, a positive PPD.

              All of these findings assume special significance in Negroes.

              This has been a very commendable workup.

              It's as commendable a workup of an FUO as I can remember.

              The staff on this floor is to be applauded.

              All right, let's go take a look at the girl.

              It's a reportable case, Brubaker. I'd write it up.


              who's the senior resident on this floor?

              That would be Dr. Brubaker. But he's at Chief-of-Service rounds, now.

              That's this way?

              I wonder if there's some correlation between hepatic tuberculosis and drug addiction.

              Presumably, there was an early consideration of SBE?

              Yes, sir. We discounted it after repeated blood cultures were negative.

              - You, Ambler. Is that right, "Ambler"? - Yes, sir.

              What else do you look for in Bacterial Endocarditis?

              Dr. Brubaker, can I see you for a minute, please?

              Still a little icteric. Who's got an ophthalmoscope?

              Did anyone note Roth spots?

              Don't worry about it. There aren't any.

              Ambler, you're our big man on SBE.

              - What was the latex fixation? - It wasn't done, sir.

              Don't you think that's an important test to differentiate SBE from miliary TB?

              Not you, Biegelman. Ambler.

              There's about a    percent incidence of false-positive latex in SBE.

              You have been reading up.

              If the diagnosis were SBE...

              would a positive latex indicate anything in the therapy?

              - We'd expect the latex to become negative. - Lf...

              If the antibiotic therapy were successful.

              - Are you applying for your internship here? - I'm not sure.

              Come and see me. Would you sit up, please, miss?

              We've got a little thing here, Doctor.

              The girl over there is the daughter of the patient in    .

              He is at the moment comatose, and requires intravenous feeding and meds.

              The daughter wants to take the father out of the hospital...

              and back to Mexico, where they live.

              The patient's name is Drummond. He's apparently a Methodist missionary.

              They run some kind of religious mission among the Apache Indians.

              The daughter says she's a licensed nurse...

              so she can give the necessary IVs and treatment.

              I don't think he should be let out of the hospital.

              The attending, the guy in brown over there, concurs.

              Wait, let me have all that again.

              As a matter of fact, this is Dr. Biegelman's case.

              Never mind the professional ethics. What happened?

              I don't know why I'm covering up for that son of a bitch in Farkis Pavilion.

              The patient, a man of    was admitted to the hospital    days ago...

              in good health, for a checkup. No visible distress.

              We did the mandatory workup on him. Blood cultures, stool, LE preps, chest EKG.

              All negative. However, there was some evidence of protein in his urine.

              I don't know how that guy in Farkis Pavilion found out.

              Maybe he had a deal with one of the girls in the lab.

              He turned up the next day...

              conned the patient into signing an authorization for a biopsy.

              - What guy in Farkis Pavilion? - Some postgrad fellow named lves.

              Elroy lves. I never met him. He's on one of the immunology research programs.

              Some postgrad came up here, did a biopsy on the patient?

              Yes, sir. He conned Biegelman with that story...

              Protein in the urine?

              - And he biopsied the man? - And he nicked a vessel.

              They woke up Biegelman at  :   in the morning, as the patient was in shock.

              Biegelman called the kidney people for a consult.

              But what was there to see? The patient was sour and bleeding.

              Spoke to this fellow, Sutcliff.

              He referred us to a surgeon named Welbeck.

              - That barber? - You ain't heard nothing yet.

              We finally got Welbeck around  :   in the morning.

              He said go ahead. So they laid the surgery for  :  .

              Welbeck turned up half-stoned, orders an IVP, clears him for allergies...

              Without actually testing, and the patient went into shock.

              And tubular necrosis. They lopped out the bleeding kidney...

              ran him back to the room, we waited for urine.

              Fever began spiking like hell, uremia, vomiting. So we arranged hemodialysis.

              He's putting out good water now...

              but some nurse goofed on his last treatment. A shunt separated, something.

              Blood pressure plunged. They ran him up to ICU...

              gave him two units of whole blood. Vital signs are normal, but he's comatose.

              - That was two days ago. - In short...

              a man comes into this hospital in perfect health...

              and in the space of one week, we chop out one kidney...

              damage another, reduce him to coma, and damn near kill him.

              Yes, sir.

              You know, Brubaker...

              last night I sat in my hotel room, reviewing the shambles of my life...

              and contemplating suicide.

              I said, "No, Bock, don't do it. You're a doctor, you're a healer.

              "You're the Chief of Medicine at one of the great hospitals of the world.

              "You are a necessary person. Your life is meaningful"."

              Then I walk in here, today, and I find out that one of my doctors...

              was killed by a couple of nurses who mistook him for a patient...

              because he screwed a technician from the Nephrology Lab.

              - Hematology... - Now you come to me...

              with this gothic horror story in which the entire machinery of modern medicine...

              has apparently conspired to destroy one lousy patient.

              How am I to sustain my feeling of meaningfulness in the face of this?

              I'll tell you something.

              If there were an oven around here, I'd stick my head in it.

              What was the name of that guy from Farkis Pavilion, again?

              Lves, sir. Elroy lves.

              - Somebody ought to ream his ass. - I'm going to ream his ass.

              I'm gonna break that Welbeck's back. I'll defrock those two cannibals.

              They will never again practice in this hospital. I'll tell you that.

              What about the girl? She says we have no right to stop her...

              from taking her father out. She's willing to sign an AOR form.

              Let him go...

              before we kill him.

              Get me Dr. Gilley. I want to talk to him right now.

              Put him on page, if you have to.

              I don't care if he's operating. You get me some monkey named lves.

              L-V-E-S. First name, Elroy. He's in the Farkis Pavilion.

              I want to talk to you, Joe. Come in my office, please.

              You got some punk rotating in your department, named lves?

              Also, I want to ask you what kind of dialysis room you're running.

              Excuse me.

              Gilley? Bock.

              Didn't you tell me a few months ago...

              you were gonna cut off all privileges for that assassin, Welbeck?

              Welbeck, yes! He just butchered another one of my patients!

              The man's a buccaneer.

              I want him brought up before the Medical Executive Committee.

              He's in your department, not mine. He's putatively a surgeon!

              I'll be here.

              I think you should know you've got some research guy named lves...

              in your department who's doing some dubious biopsies.

              We're having enough problems squeezing grants...

              - out of the Nixon Administration... - Ives is dead. That's why I'm here.

              - What do you mean? - I mean he's dead.

              He had a heart attack in the Emergency Room.

              He had a heart attack in the Emergency Room?

              What is this? Some kind of plague? Where is he now?

              They were just taking him down to Pathology.

              ...the next thing anybody knew, three hours later...

              Mrs. Cushing said there was a dead man in the holding room.

              You don't find anything a little grotesque about all this?

              - What do you mean? - I mean, at  :   this morning...

              we meet over a doctor who's killed intravenously...

              and here we are four hours later, with another doctor...

              who's died of a heart attack in the Emergency Room.

              What are you suggesting?

              You think we have a mad killer stalking the hospital halls?

              Presumably, Dr. Ives died of a heart attack, and Schaefer in a diabetic coma.

              People do die of these things.

              It's all coincidental, but I wouldn't call it grotesque.

              How long are they gonna be on Schaefer's post?

              - I don't think you'd like to call next-of-kin? - No, thanks.

              God, I need a drink.

              Mr. Mead?

              I have an injection for you.

              What the hell is going on in there?

              Honey, we got a witch doctor in    ...

              and you better go in there.

              You know that Indian that was sitting in     all night? He's still there.

              And the girl's there, and they're doing some voodoo in there.

              - And I ain't kidding! - What're you talking about?

              I mean that Indian's in there, half-naked, going...

              ...with a little bag.

              You just better get in there, Mrs. Dunne.

              You wanna see something, baby? You just come here.

              It's a perfectly harmless ceremony. It's nothing to get excited about.

              It'll be over in a few minutes, anyway.

              Mr. Blacktree is a shaman who gets his power from the thunder...

              and it's imperative he conclude his ritual while the storm is still going on.

              Visiting hours were over at  :  .

              All that's going on in there is a simple Apache prayer...

              for my father's recovery.

              The markings he's made on my father's arms...

              are from the pollen of the tule plant.

              The twigs have no significance, except they've been struck by lightning...

              and are consequently appeals to the spirit of lightning.

              It's all entirely harmless. A religious ceremony, not a medical one.

              You don't seriously believe all that mumbo jumbo's gonna cure him?

              On the other hand, it won't kill him.

              - Okay. Go ahead. - Thanks.

              - You still gonna take your father out? - I have to arrange an ambulance.

              - Is there a phone here I could use? - Use my office.

              Thank you.

              Hello. I'd like to arrange an ambulance.

              I'd like to arrange an ambulance at  :   tomorrow afternoon.

              Drummond. First name, Barbara. I'll pay cash.

              You're to pick up my father, Drummond, Edward...

              at the Manhattan Medical Center, Holly Pavilion, Room    .

              It's a stretcher case. I presume you provide the stretcher.

              He's to be taken to American Airlines...

              Kennedy Airport, Flight     to Yuma, Arizona.

              I'll accompany the patient. Thank you.

              - You believe in witchcraft, Miss Drummond? - I believe in everything.

              - You like a drink? - Yeah.

              My father, you should know, was a very successful doctor in Boston.

              A member of the Harvard Medical Faculty.

              He was a widower, and I was his only child.

              He was not an especially religious man, a sober Methodist.

              One evening, seven years ago...

              he attended a Pentecostal meeting at Harvard...

              and found himself speaking in tongues.

              He sank to his knees at the back of the room and began to talk fluently...

              in a language which no one had ever heard before.

              This sort of thing happens frequently at Pentecostal meetings...

              and began happening regularly to my father.

              It was not unusual to walk into our home and find my father sitting in his office...

              utterly serene, happily speaking to the air in this strange, foreign tongue.

              I was, at that time,    years old...

              having my obligatory affair with a minority group.

              In my case, a Hopi Indian, a postgraduate fellow at Harvard...

              doing his doctorate in aboriginal languages of the Southwest.

              One day, I brought the Indian boy home...

              just as my father was sinking to his knees in the entrance foyer in one of his trances.

              The Indian wheeled in his tracks, and he said, "I'll be a son of a bitch!"

              You see, my father was speaking an Apache dialect...

              an obscure dialect, at that...

              spoken only by a ragged band of unreconstructed Indians...

              who had rejected the reservation, and gone to live in isolation...

              in the Sierra Madre Mountains in Northern Mexico.

              What do you say to that?

              What the hell am I supposed to say to that?

              I'm sitting here boozing, and you come in and tell me...

              some demented story about your father's religious conversion.

              You miss the point. Not my father's conversion, mine.

              You see, I'd been hitting the acid pretty regularly at that time.

              I had achieved a few minor sensory deformities, some suicidal despairs...

              but nothing as wild as fluency in an obscure Apache dialect.

              I mean, like, "Wow, man!"

              Here was living afflatus right before my eyes!

              Within a week, my father had closed his Beacon Hill practice...

              and set out to start a mission in the Mexican Mountains.

              I turned in my SDS card and my crash helmet, and I followed him.

              It was a disaster, at least for me.

              My father had received the revelation, not I.

              He stood gaunt on a mountain slope and preached the Apocalypse...

              to solemnly amused Indians.

              I masturbated a lot. We lived in a grass wickiup...

              ate raw rabbit and crushed piņon nuts. It was hideous.

              Within two months, I was back in Boston.

              A hollow shell, disenchanted with everything, and dizzy with dengue.

              I turned to austerity, combed my hair tight, entered nursing school.

              I became haggard, driven...

              had shamelessly incestuous dreams about my father.

              I took up with some of the senior staff there. One of them...

              a portly psychiatrist, explained...

              I was generated by an unresolved lust for my father.

              I cracked up.

              One day, they found me walking to work naked and screaming obscenities.

              There was talk of institutionalizing me.

              So I packed a bag and went back to join my father in the Sierra Madre Mountains.

              I've been there ever since. That's three years.

              My father is, of course, as mad as a hatter.

              I watch over him, and have been curiously content.

              You see, I believe in everything.

              What was that all about?

              I thought I was obvious as hell.

              I'm trying to tell you, I have a thing about middle-aged men.

              I admire your candor.

              You've been admiring a lot more than that.

              You're wasting your time.

              I've been impotent for years.


              What the hell is wrong with being impotent?

              Kids are more hung up on sex than the Victorians.

              I got a son,    years old. I threw him out of the house last year.

              Pietistic little humbug.

              He preached universal love, and he despised everyone.

              Had a blanket contempt for the middle class, even its decencies.

              Detested my mother because she had a petit bourgeois pride...

              in her son, the doctor.

              I cannot tell you how brutishly he ignored that rather good lady.

              When she died, he didn't even come to the funeral.

              He felt the chapel service was an hypocrisy.

              He told me his generation didn't live with lies.

              I said, "Listen, everybody lives with lies"."

              I grabbed him by his poncho...

              and I dragged him the length...

              of our seven-room, despicably affluent...

              middle-class apartment, and I flung him... out.

              I haven't seen him since.

              You know what he said to me?

              He's standing there on the landing, on the verge of tears.

              He shrieked at me:

              "You old fink.

              "You can't even get it up anymore"."

              That was it, you see.

              That was his real revolution.

              It wasn't racism...

              the oppressed poor, or the war in Vietnam.

              The ultimate American societal sickness...

              was a limp dingus.

              My God.

              If there is a despised, misunderstood minority in this country...

              it is us poor, impotent bastards. I'm impotent, and I'm proud of it.

              Impotence is beautiful, baby!

              - Power to the impotent! Right on, baby! - Right on!

              You know...

              when I say impotent, I don't mean merely limp.

              Disagreeable as it may be for a woman, a man may lust for other things...

              something a little less transient than an erection.

              A sense of permanent worth.

              That's what medicine was to me, my reason for being.

              When I was   ...

              I presented a paper before the annual convention...

              of the Society of Clinical Investigation...

              that pioneered the whole goddamn field of lmmunology.

              A breakthrough.

              I'm in all the textbooks.

              I happen to be an eminent man.

              You know something else? I don't give a goddamn.

              When I say impotent...

              I mean I've lost even my desire to work.

              That's a hell of a lot more primal passion than sex.

              I've lost my reason for being.

              My purpose.

              The only thing I ever truly loved.

              It is all rubbish, isn't it?

              Transplants, antibodies...

              We manufacture genes.

              We can produce birth ectogenetically.

              We can practically clone people like carrots...

              and half the kids in this ghetto haven't even been inoculated for polio!

              We have established the most enormous...

              medical entity ever conceived...

              and people are sicker than ever!

              We cure nothing!

              We heal nothing!

              The whole goddamn wretched world...

              is strangulating in front of our eyes.

              That's what I mean when I say impotent.

              You don't know what the hell I'm talking about, do you?

              Of course I do.

              I'm very tired.

              And I hurt.

              I've got nothing going for me anymore. Can you understand that?

              Of course.

              Can you also understand...

              that the only admissible matter left is death?

              Sounds to me like a familiar case of morbid menopause.


              It's hard for me to take your despair seriously.

              - You obviously enjoy it so much. - Bugger off!

              That's all I need now, is clinical insight.

              Some cockamamie   -year-old acidhead...

              is gonna reassure me about the menopause now!

              I'd like to be alone. Why don't you just beat it?

              Close the door and turn off the lights on your way out.

              Mr. Blacktree disapproves of my miniskirt...

              but it was the only thing I had to come to the city with.

              Back at the tribe, I wear ankle-length buckskin.

              Swell. Close the door and turn off the lights.

              What're you shooting?

              Leave me alone.


              You take enough of this stuff, it'll kill you.

              I thought I might have read you wrong, that you really were suicidal, so I came back.

              Who asked you?

              Leave me alone! Why can't you leave me alone?

              Leave me alone.

              Why didn't you let me do it?

              I'll see you.

              Do you have a match, Doctor?

              You wouldn't be awake?

              - What time is it? - Almost  :  .

              I swiped this for you out of the nurses' locker room.

              I'll make good on your dress. I'm afraid it was torn beyond repair.

              I'll buy you a new one, or give me the size and I'll send it on to you.

              I wanna talk to you about that.

              - Talk to me about what? - Your father.

              You really shouldn't take him out of here in his condition.

              I've just been looking at his chart. There's no reason to presume brain damage.

              You can't predict anything in these instances...

              but he could come out of that coma at any time.

              I think you should leave him here. I'll personally look after him.

              Is this your way of saying you'd like me to stay in town a few more days?

              That would be nice, too.

              What do you say, Miss Drummond?

              I expect you can call me Barbara...

              considering you ravished me three times last night.

              - Three times? - Look at him pretending he didn't count.

              You were as puffed up as a toad about it.

              Punched a couple of holes in your crusade for universal impotence, didn't it?

              I think we're on first-name basis now. I'll call you Herb.

              Let's give your father a week, Barbara. What do you say?

              I don't want my father in this hospital.

              I had a dream about this hospital.

              I dreamt this enormous...

              starched, white-tile building suddenly erupted like a volcano...

              and all the patients, doctors, nurses, attendants, orderlies...

              the whole line-staff, food-service people, the aged, the lame...

              and you, right in the middle...

              were stampeding in one hideous, screaming, suicidal mass into the sea.

              I'm taking my father out of here, and as quickly as I can.

              You're really a fruitcake, you know?

              Let me put it this way. I love you.

              I fancied you from the moment you came lumbering down that hallway, upstairs.

              I said to Mr. Blacktree, "Who's that hulking bear of a man?"

              The Apaches are reverential about bears.

              Won't eat bear meat, never skin bears.

              Bears are thought of as both benign and evil, but very strong power.

              Men with bear power are highly respected and are said to be great healers.

              "That man," I said, "gets his power from the bear"."

              Swell. Now, look.

              You haven't got a hotel room or some sort of accommodations...

              - where you can stay... - Let me put it this way.

              My father and I accept the implacability of death.

              If he dies, he dies.

              I'm getting him out of here and back to Mexico at  :   p.m.

              I want you to come with us, because I love you and want children.

              I'm afraid Mexico is a little too remote for me.

              We could use you down there. There's a curiously high incidence of TB.

              You'd be a doctor again.

              You'd be necessary again.

              If you love me, I don't see any other choice.

              What do you mean, if I love you? I raped you in a suicidal rage.

              How did we get to love and children?

              I ought to know if a man loves me or not.

              You must've told me half a hundred times last night you loved me.

              You murmured and shouted it.

              You even opened the window and bellowed it out into the street.

              Those were more expressions of gratitude than love.

              Gratitude for what?

              For resurrecting feelings of life in me I thought dead.

              My God, what do you think love is?

              All right, I love you! You love me!

              I'm not about to argue with so relentless a romantic.

              Since we have this great passion going for us...

              why don't you stay around New York for a week or    days?

              It's up to    days now.

              - Just until your father's condition improves. - No.

              I've had these prophetic dreams for seven nights.

              Seven is a sinister number.

              The meaning of these dreams is very clear, seven times as clear.

              I'm to get you and my father out of here before we're all destroyed.

              You're certifiable.

              Half the time you're an intelligent young woman...

              then all of a sudden, you turn into a Cabalist...

              who believes in dreams and witchcraft and bear power.

              I don't like the way you dismiss my whole life as unnecessary.

              I do a lot of healing here in Manhattan.

              I don't have to go to Mexico to do it. I also teach.

              I send out    doctors a year into the world...

              often inspirited, at least competent.

              I've built up one of the best departments of medicine in the world.

              We have a hell of a heart unit, we have a hell of a kidney group.

              A lot of people come into this place in big trouble...

              and go out a lot better for the experience, so don't tell me how unnecessary I am.

              So why were you trying to kill yourself with an overdose of potassium?

              - Where are you going? - My hotel. I have to check out.

              Mr. Blacktree doesn't speak any English.

              - You're coming back, of course? - Of course.

              I have to settle the bill, pack my father.

              I think you need a few hours alone to make your decisions.

              What decision?

              You're a very tired, very damaged man.

              You've had a hideous marriage, I assume a few tacky affairs along the way.

              You're understandably reluctant to get involved again.

              And here I am with this preposterous idea...

              you throw everything up and go off with me to some barren mountains in Mexico.

              Utterly mad, I know. On the other hand...

              you find this world as desolate as I do. You did try to kill yourself last night.

              So that's it.

              Either me and the mountains, or the bottle of potassium.

              I'll be back in an hour or so. I'll be in my father's room.

              All right, I love you!

              My God!

               I repeat, I'm asking you  to come out peacefully.

               These buildings are condemned  and unfit for habitation.

               You people are possessing  this building illegally...

               and in violation of the law.

               I'm asking you to come out peacefully.

              So the hospital has assumed the responsibility...

              for finding     housing units in good buildings.

              The hospital wishes to point out that this row of buildings on First Avenue...

              was condemned by the city before the hospital acquired ownership...

              and even then...

              only after responsible leaders in the community...

              approved the building of our new drug-rehabilitation center.

              God damn it. I've got a dozen community leaders waiting for me in the library.

              We're trying to work out a negotiable formula for two years...

              with no help from you people in the Urban Affairs Division, I might add.

              I am not going to throw all that down the drain...

              because some cockamamie activist group...

              is showboating for the television cameras.

              You get those people out of those buildings before a wall collapses...

              or a fire breaks out and we've got a riot on our hands.


              Having your troubles?

              I won't take much of your time. My name is Welbeck.

              I've been associated with this hospital for six years...

              and yesterday afternoon, Dr. Gilley called me...

              to tell me he was cutting off my privileges with the hospital.

              - Do you know anything about that? - That's news to me.

              - He said he sent the report on. - I'll probably get the report tomorrow.

              - I assume... - A report about what?

              I'm not sure myself.

              I did a nephrectomy on a man about seven days ago.

              Emergency called in at  :   a.m., and the man was hemorrhaging...

              I'm really sorry. I do have a meeting to go to.

              In any event, there's nothing I can do about it.

              If Gilley... I'll be in the library.

              If Gilley wants to cut your privileges...

              he's Chief of Surgery, it's within his province.

              You'll have to have the hearing.

              I have a laparotomy for today. I assume I'll be able to go through with that.

              I've been connected with this hospital for six years.

              It seems to me I've had your name down here before, for something.

              Wait a minute.

              You're the fellow...

              with the Medicaid collecting business...

              who incorporated and went public, right? Something like that?

              Milton Mead was telling me about you.

              You're a whole medical conglomerate.

              You've got a factoring service, a computerized billing company...

              a few proprietary hospitals, a few nursing homes.

              Good heavens, you shouldn't be brought up before a committee of mere doctors.

              You should be investigated by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

              You have to go through with the hearing. I can't do anything about that.

              ...imperializing the Blacks.

              We reject the bourgeois, middle-class Black traitors and flunkies...

              who are selling out the Black proletarians...

              - to the expansionist, racist policies... - Let's get back to the abortion issue.

              What the hell does the male establishment know about abortion?

              Who the hell raised the issue of birth control?

              The issue at hand is the control of drug addiction...

              in this community and in the ghetto, personally.

              - We don't want no goddamn abortion. - Let's get to the core of this matter.

              The point is that this hospital is the landlord for those buildings...

              and instead of tearing them down...

              and building some imperialistic extensions of the medical establishment...

              this hospital ought to be rebuilding those tenements...

              - give those people decent housing. - Please.

              You know, I hallucinated last night.

              I hallucinated there was an Indian doing a war dance in here.

                You weren't hallucinating, Mr. Mead.

                - There was an Indian in here last night. - There was?

                Okay. Down to the Operating Room.

                Dr. Norris said about half an hour.

                - Okay. Coming up fine. - Half an hour.

                - Hold him right there. - Miss Shirley...

                it's just an ovarian cyst.

                Okay. Go up to Holly  ...

                on the double. Go.

                Who is that? Is that Mangafranni?

                Yeah. Number  .

                Good morning, Doctor.

                It's legal for a doctor to incorporate in New York, isn't it?

                Since last September.

                If they'd had that when I was your age, I'd have put away a couple of million.

                It gives you a variety of deferral devices.

                Profit sharing, for example.

                Let's say you pick yourself an October    fiscal.

                You declare a bonus payable in '  .

                An accrued item payable to a principal shareholder must be paid...

                within two and a half months after the year end, to get the deduction in the prior year.

                But your corporation doesn't pay that tax...

                because we've eliminated the taxable income with the bonus.

                With two taxable entities, you can bury a lot of expenses.

                Hello, this is Welbeck. Any messages for me?

                I'm at the hospital. I gotta cut open some guy soon.

                I'll try to make it as fast as I can. How urgent did he say it was?

                Doctor Hogan made those arrangements with the underwriters.

                The registration statement was filed with the SEC well over a year ago.

                If he calls again, have me paged here.

                - Mangafranni, right? - Right.

                What do you say? We're not gonna hang it in the Louvre.

                There's no pulse, Doctor.

                - What's the pressure? - There's no blood pressure.

                No pulse. Get the tube and EKG.

                - What's the matter? - I can't feel a thing here.

                - What the hell happened? - I don't know.

                She must have thrown an embolus. She was doing fine, up to now.

                - Did you check the gases? - I did.

                'Cause the only time I saw anyone conk out...

                some jerk switched the nitrous oxide and the gas lines.

                Get the damn leads on.

                For Christ's sake, what the hell is this?

                She's a young woman. Should we open the chest?

                - She's    you button-head. - Bicarb.

                Jesus H. Christ!

                Stop for a minute.

                - V-fib, Doctor. - Get me the paddles.

                I may be crazy, Doctor, but I don't think this is your patient.

                What the hell are you talking about?

                I don't want to get into an intestine hassle.

                The malpractice here is monumental.

                As you can see, Dr. Schaefer's blood sugar was   .

                No glucose solution is going to do that. The only thing that'll do it...

                is at least    units of insulin, probably more.

                We must presume one of the nurses shot    units of insulin into his bloodstream...

                either by injection or IV, although how in God's name a thing like that...

                I'm very sorry, Doctor.

                - May I use your phone? - Certainly.

                Did you ask the head nurse from eighth to tell you...

                - when a Miss Drummond got here? - Yes.

                - She just got there. - I better get down there directly.

                Have you called the OOD?

                You better call Dr. Gilley. And call Mr. Sloan.

                I'll be right down.

                I'm very sorry. There's a very nasty one in the OR.

                They've just operated on the wrong patient.

                I don't understand. Is she back in her room?

                When did she get back in her room? Who brought her back?

                She's back in her room.

                - Who? - Mrs. Mangafranni...

                the woman who was supposed to have been operated on.

                Are they still working on that woman in  ?

                I'm sorry, Mrs. Fried, could you say that again?

                Nobody in this office sent her back up.

                All right, Mrs. Fried. I'll have to call you back.

                Did any of you take a woman patient named Mangafranni...

                out of the holding room, back up to Holly   around   :  ?

                - What happened? - I don't know what happened.

                A patient named Mangafranni was scheduled to have a hysterectomy...

                at   :  . Dr. Mallory.

                I talked to Sylvia, in the holding room, who admitted her, so she was here.

                Now I just spoke to Mrs. Fried on Holly  ...

                and she says an orderly brought Mrs. Mangafranni...

                back to her room about    minutes ago.

                Now Mrs. Mangafranni is in her room, sleeping.

                - Who's the woman in the operating room? - I don't know.

                Is she dead?

                They had to open her up, and that's not good.

                I better get Mr. Mead.

                Now, we can rectify the injustices...

                of the world tomorrow, but right now...

                could we get those people out of those buildings?

                Will you please listen to me? Will you shut up?

                Will you please shut up and listen to me?

                Let's call a halt to this...

                participatory democracy...

                and address ourselves to the immediate problem!

                - When did it happen? - About half an hour.

                - Called the Medical Examiner? - No.

                You'd better do that now. Call the precinct station house, too.

                Good morning.

                This is really something, isn't it?

                I thought she looked different when they brought her.

                I said to one of the nurses, "She looks younger without her dentures"."

                I talked to her half an hour before.

                Does anyone know who she is? What's her chart say?

                Her chart and her bracelet say "Mangafranni"."

                The only thing that isn't Mangafranni is the woman.

                Jesus H. Christ!

                I've been chopping out   uteruses a day for    years...

                is it too much to expect you people to bring in...

                the right goddamn Jesus Christ uterus?

                I talked to her in the holding room.

                She was perfectly fine. A little drowsy.

                I thought it was funny that when they brought her in, she was out cold.

                We'll have to stay here till Mr. Mead or someone from the OOD comes back.

                I'm not taking the rap for this.

                I've got one malpractice suit pending. I'm not taking the rap for this one.

                You're not leaving.

                I love you, and I'm not gonna let you go.

                Let's start putting your father's things back. He's staying here.

                I'll find you an apartment.

                I'm staying in a filthy little hotel room. We can't use that.

                I can't make it, up here. I'll crack up.

                I can retain my sanity only in a simple society.

                You can't really expect me...

                to live in a grass shack and hunt jackrabbit.

                - Be sensible, for God's sake. - I am being sensible.

                What is it you're so afraid of leaving here? Your plastic home?

                Your conditioned air? Your synthetic clothes? Your instant food?

                I'm offering you green silence, and solitude.

                The natural order of things.

                Mostly, I'm offering me. I think we're beautiful.

                You make it sound almost plausible.

                I don't know why you even hesitate. What's holding you here?

                Is it your wife?

                That's all over.

                If I'm married to anything, it's this hospital. It's been my whole life.

                I can't walk out on it as though it never mattered.

                I'm middle class.

                Among us middle class, love doesn't triumph over all...

                responsibility does.

                Don't ask me to stay up here with you, because I love you, and I will.

                And we'll both be destroyed.

                I have the bill here to pay, yet.

                I'll come with you.

                You wanted to know the name of that dialysis nurse?


                The one who goofed on your patient, Drummond.

                Her name is Teresa Campanella. You're not gonna believe this.

                She died on the operating table of OR   about an hour ago.

                - What? - You heard about the screwup in OR  .

                - You mean she was the one? - I just identified her.

                What is going on?

                Every time I try to find somebody, they either died of a heart attack...

                or anesthesia shock in an OR.

                I just came from the OR. They're trying to find a Dr. Schaefer.

                Doesn't a kid named Schaefer work here?

                Did. He died yesterday of an overdose of insulin. Why?

                The nurse says there's a Dr. Schaefer hanging around the holding room.

                Wouldn't have been your Schaefer.

                Nurse says it was senior staff, middle-aged man.

                There's no senior staff by that name.

                I told them that. I said, "I don't know any senior staff named Schaefer"."

                They've got detectives down there. A whole big investigation.

                - How'd the nurse know his name? - His nameplate.

                I am the fool for Christ, and Paraclete of Caborca.

                For heaven's sakes, Dad.

                What the hell's going on?

                We thought you were at death's door. What are you doing out of bed?

                What happened?

                What's he going at you for? Did he say anything?

                As a matter of fact...

                he said, "I am the fool for Christ and the Paraclete of Caborca"."

                Shut that door, because if he tells everybody...

                he's the fool for Christ and the Paraclete of Caborca, they'll put us all away.

                He's killed two doctors and a nurse.

                I am the wrath of the lamb, and the angel of the bottomless pit.

                What do you mean?

                I mean he's killed two doctors and a nurse.

                He just tried to kill me.

                He has something against doctors.

                He got ahold of some insulin and put it in Dr. Schaefer's intravenous solution.

                Somehow, he got Dr. Ives to die of a heart attack...

                in the middle of the Emergency Room.

                Somehow, he got a dialysis nurse, Campanella...

                to die of anesthesia shock on an operating table.

                He's been running all over the hospital, dressed up in Dr. Schaefer's uniform.

                They're looking all over the place for the mysterious Dr. Schaefer.

                It's incredible to us both, but as you can see, your father is not a helpless comatose.

                I'm not the one who's crazy. Ask your crazy father.

                I was merely an instrument of God.

                I kill no one.

                They all three died by their own hands.

                Ritual victims of their own institutions...

                murdered by irony.

                "An eye for an eye"."

                Biblical retribution.

                Schaefer was first, because he killed God.

                God was admitted to this hospital last Monday...

                under the name of Guernsey.

                 I was instantly aware of a divine presence.

                 I was convinced this porcelain old man  was an angel of the Lord...

                 perhaps even Christ himself.

                 Our savior was suffering from emphysema.

                 He was relentlessly subjected  to the benefits of modern medicine...

                 and died at  :   that evening.

                 A few hours later,  he appeared to me in a revelation.

                Rise up, Drummond.

                You are dead, now you are restored.

                Those who killed you, and those who killed me...

                will die in our place.

                You are the Paraclete of Caborca.

                The wrath of the lamb.

                The angel...

                of the bottomless pit.

                 Not quite the burning bush, perhaps,  but prodigal enough for me.

                 I was to avenge the death of God,  and my own brutalization.

                 I was to kill doctors Schaefer,  Ives, and Welbeck...

                 and the dialysis nurse, Miss Campanella...

                 whose negligence caused my coma.

                 I awaited a further sign from God,  which was given to me later that evening.

                 Dr. Schaefer had arranged an assignation...

                 with a girl from the Hematology Lab  named Sheila.

                Boy, I sure hope nobody walks in.

                - What about him? - He's zonked out.

                - What's new? - Nothing.

                - What's this? - It's my insulin.

                I forgot to put it back.

                What's the insulin for? I didn't know you were a diabetic.

                It ain't contagious, don't worry.

                 You took the insulin from Dr. Schaefer's  pocket and put it in the IV.


                 Then a nurse came...

                 and plugged the IVjar into Schaefer.

                God clearly intended a measure of irony here.

                The hospital was to do all the killing for me.

                All I need do is arrange for the doctors to become patients in their own hospital.

                The next morning, I pinched some digoxin from the pharmacy...

                and a sandbag from a utility cart...

                and found my way to Dr. Ives' laboratory.

                I crushed him with the sandbag...

                and gave him a massive shot of the digoxin.

                This brought on an instant condition of cardiac arrhythmia.

                I waited for him to come to.

                Then I brought him down to the Emergency Room.

                 He had, at that time, perhaps an hour to live.

                 Prompt treatment would've saved his life.

                He was suddenly taken ill. I got him here right away.

                 As a staff doctor,  he was seen without preliminaries.

                 His vital signs were taken.  An electrocardiogram...

                 which revealed occasional  ventricular premature contractions.

                 An intern took his history,  and then he was...

                 promptly, simply...

                 forgotten to death.

                 Simply mislaid.

                 Mislaid among the broken wrists...

                 the chest pains, the scalp lacerations...

                 the man whose fingers  were crushed in a taxi door...

                 the infant with a skin rash,  the child swiped by a car...

                 the old lady mugged in the subway,  the derelict beaten by sailors...

                 the teenage suicide, the paranoids...

                 drunks, asthmatics, the rapes,  the septic abortions...

                 the overdosed addicts...

                 the fractures, infarcts, hemorrhages,  concussions, boils, abrasions...

                 the colonic cancers, the cardiac arrests...

                 the whole wounded madhouse of our times.

                Who's Number        -S?

                Is there anybody here who is that number?

                 In this way...

                 was it revealed to me  the manner of Nurse Campanella's death.

                 She was to die  of the great American plague:

                 Vestigial identity.

                So, last night I crushed Miss Campanella with a sandbag...

                sedated her with Thorazine, shaved her, prepped her...

                and parked her in a corridor of the x-ray department for five hours.

                - Why x-ray? - At x-ray...

                a sedated body lying around unattended for five hours...

                - wouldn't seem unusual. - Of course.

                Her operation, that is to say...

                Mrs. Mangafranni's operation, was not scheduled till  :  .

                At  :   this morning, I rang for my nurse.

                Rang for your nurse?

                To insure one full hour of uninterrupted privacy.

                I got up, wheeled Miss Campanella off to the operating rooms...

                I exchanged Mrs. Mangafranni's bed with hers.

                I transferred the charts and identity bracelets.

                She died officially of anesthesia shock.

                In fact, she died because she was wearing another woman's identity.

                God, what do we do now?

                Let me take him back to Mexico.

                It's a simple world there. He functions there.

                If you turn him in...

                they'll cage him in the Rockland State Hospital for the criminally insane.

                - Let me take him back. - Are you kidding?

                We'll both take him. I'm going with you.

                Let's get him dressed.

                We'll leave before the police put us all in Rockland State.

                I haven't finished my work here. I have this Welbeck to dispose of.

                I'm the angel of the bottomless pit, and the wrath of the lamb.

                He's having another revelation.

                That ambulance must be there by now. You go and get them.

                I'll give him a shot of something. We'll go to the airport in the ambulance.

                You're hallucinating again.

                Powell never showed up.

                I'm short-staffed as hell. It's just me and Alice.

                - It's like a Sunday. Nobody's here. - I'll be in with the bleeder.

                You gotta send me somebody.

                We'll be in    .

                Then what did she say?

                I'm Dr. Welbeck. I have a patient on this floor named Drummond.

                I'd like to see his chart.

                Dr. Bock, can I have a few minutes of your time?

                Dr. Gilley tells me that you initiated these proceedings against me.

                - I'm busy. - What is it you have against me?

                Eight days ago you showed up half-stoned for a simple nephrectomy...

                botched it, put the patient in failure, and damn near killed him.

                Then, pausing only to send in your bill, you flew off on the wings of Man...

                to an island of sun in Montego Bay.

                This is the third time in two years we've had to patch up your patients.

                The other two died.

                You're greedy, unfeeling, inept, indifferent...

                self-inflating, and unconscionably profitable.

                Besides that, I have nothing against you.

                I'm sure you play a hell of a game of golf. What else do you want to know?

                How much do you make a year?

                For a guy who makes a lousy $   to $     ...

                This is Dr. Welbeck. Were you paging me?

                You've been trying to reach me all morning.

                He pulls out the wires and the tubes...

                and he gets up and he puts on a doctor's uniform, and he murders doctors.

                He just went out    seconds before you came in here.

                I'll tell you something else about this crazy place.

                There was a naked Indian here, last night, doing a war dance.

                That's the kind of crazy place you're running here.

                You gotta get me out of here. This is a crazy place.

                Listen to me.

                I wake up last night and there was an Indian in here, a naked Indian!

                - What kind of a hospital is this? - Are you paging me?

                Sometime later, the guy in that bed there is getting out.

                Are the police still here? Get them up here.

                All day, he lays there like he's dead.

                In the middle of the night, he gets out of bed! Thought I was crazy!

                He says, "You're hallucinating"."

                I just... Listen. I saw a naked Indian, now I'm seeing a ghost.

                I figure he's right, I'm hallucinating.

                I'll be down soon. It never rains, but it pours.

                A fire broke out in one of the buildings.

                The squatters came out. The police tried to arrest them.

                Now the situation has erupted into a riot.

                - You must be wondering what this is about. - Don't leave me alone here!

                Mr. Hitchcock will stay with you. Better call the cops, Tom.

                I haven't time now.

                I'm not gonna try to tell you this crazy story my brother just told me.

                I'll fill you in on it at lunch, sometime.

                - Hold it! - The ambulance is here.

                But your father isn't. Disappeared.

                He put on Schaefer's uniform and took off to do God's work...

                presumably the murder of Dr. Welbeck.

                - The guy on the phone is Dr. Welbeck. - What are you talking about?

                Also, the other patient in your father's room just overheard the whole confession...

                and told the Chief Administrator. They're sending for the cops.

                Oh, my God. Who held title?

                Do the underwriters know about this yet?

                What are you waiting for? Arrest the son of a bitch. Turn him in.

                Oh, my God! When?

                Call me right back. I'm at the Holly Pavilion, eighth floor. Hurry, please.

                - Are you all right? - Am I all right?

                That son of a bitch is trying to wipe me out. My partner.

                The eminent orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Noel Hogan...

                is a miserable thief, and he's trying to wipe me out.

                - Mr. Drummond's chart. - What?

                - What room is it? -    .

                I'm expecting a phone call. Put it straight through to me in that room.

                The son of a bitch has been draining the company...

                with phony purchase orders on another company...

                of which, it now turns out, his wife is the principal stockholder.

                Transparent fraud. I'll send him up for    years.

                You don't seem that much the worse for wear.

                Please use some other phone. I'm expecting an important call.

                - Who is this guy? - I'll be at the nurses' desk, Sergeant.

                You've got a fever...

                - but you're doing well. - I'm not Drummond.

                - Drummond's the other bed. - That's mine.

                It's Welbeck here. Go ahead.

                - I'm getting out of this nuthouse. - Take it easy.

                I came in here to get a lousy polyp cut out.

                My God! What do you mean? How many transactions were there?

                I borrowed against that stock.

                I'm a sick man. I'm supposed to have peace and quiet!

                What do you mean, Brazil?

                I talked to Hogan's office yesterday, and they...

                I'm wiped out.

                The SEC has suspended trading in my stock.

                Cardiac arrest. Holly  .

                We have an emergency here.

                 Please clear all corridors.

                Breathe him.

                - Where's Chandler? - He went to lunch.

                Get that bed out of here.

                Give me an Ambu-bag and an airway.

                What's been happening?

                - In here? - Yeah.

                - Who is it? - One of the patients had a cardiac arrest.

                Total cardiac arrest.

                - How long has he been like this? - A minute.

                - No pulse, no heartbeat, no respiration. - I'll take over.

                - We have another emergency in    . - Endotracheal tube.

                - Was it Drummond? - Who else would it be?

                Who is this patient? What's the story on this patient?

                This his chart, Dr. Bock? What's his name? Drummond?

                Yes, his name is Drummond. That's his chart.

                Christ. The poor son of a bitch just had a nephrectomy a week ago.

                Hook him up to the monitor.

                Stop the massage.

                Ventricular fibrillation. Get me the paddles.

                Push another amp of bicarb.

                Set it for    .

                Set,    .

                Everybody back away. One, two, three.

                Didn't convert. He's still fibrillating.

                Let's go to    .

                - Everybody back. - Set,    .

                One, two, three.

                That didn't work, either. Let me have   cc of adrenalin, and an intercardiac needle.

                Stop the massage.

                It's ventricular fibrillation. Push another amp of bicarb.

                Two hundred.

                Set,    .

                Is he dead?

                They can't get him out of fib. I don't think he'll live.

                Thank God.

                That should close the case, Sergeant.

                Nobody's gonna get hurt. We just want the Director.

                I've had it up to here.

                - I am not dealing with this kind of cheap... - Now, look.

                We're looking for a hostage!

                - Fourteen people got arrested for... - Where's the camera?

                Would you be cool, man?

                Fourteen people got arrested for living in their homes...

                - which you people threw them out of. - Right on.

                Now we are gonna arrest you.

                We gonna hold you hostage, and we ain't letting you go.

                We, the members of the Doctors' Liberation Committee...

                indict this hospital for the criminal neglect of the community in which it is situated.

                We demand a dissolution of the governing and executive boards...

                What are you gonna do about those    ghetto people?

                I am not going to do anything about anything.

                You are.

                If you want to take over this hospital, you take it over.

                - We will! - You run it!

                I am finished. I quit.

                You run it. You pay the bills!

                - You fight the city. - We will.

                You fight the state. You fight the unions. You fight the community.

                You think you can do a better job, you do it.

                Now, I am finished! I quit!

                It's all yours.

                Let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains.

                The age is closed.

                The season of the seventh seal is at hand!

                The age is closed.

                Dr. Welbeck is dead. They thought he was you.

                I know.

                We must arrange to have his body shipped to my Apache village...

                where we'll bury him with full tribal rites.

                - We must hurry. - In a day or two, someone'll ask...

                "Whatever happened to Dr. Welbeck?"

                Lt'll be assumed he absconded to Brazil to join his partner...

                the eminent orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Noel Hogan.

                Welbeck, too, was mislaid...

                overlooked, forgotten to death.

                I'm not going.

                The hospital's coming apart. I can't walk out on it when it's coming apart.

                Someone has to be responsible.

                Everybody's hitting the road...

                running away, running to the hills.

                Someone's got to be responsible.

                Kennedy Airport. You've got a  :   flight to make.

                You going back in?


                It's like pissing in the wind, right?


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