A Doctor a Day is a novel about one physician and the physical, emotional and psychological toll of his dedication. He’s a good doctor with ten years of unrelenting care for dying patients and their families. The pressure becomes unbearable when he is sued for malpractice, leading him to consider suicide as the only escape. Though the story is fictional, it reflects the all too common, real-life issues faced by practicing physicians in today’s world.
Why did I write this novel?
My major goal was to provide insight into the mind of a physician by following the main character, Dr. Luke James, through his tenth year of medical practice. You become privy to his challenges and fears, unmasking the psychological burden he endures. It serves as an example of what many of today’s physicians experience during their careers and how some can be driven to extremes.
In the real world, an air of medical infallibility is still the prerequisite to instilling patient confidence. This expectation presents an unrealistic, psychologically exhausting burden ultimately damaging to doctors and patients alike. It might help explain why the physician suicide rate is fifty percent greater than the general population. Even worse, the mental health support systems designed to help physicians are severely lacking.
This leads to the all-important question—especially critical given our continual demand for good medical care—Who heals our healers?
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About the Author
Over four decades he has lectured extensively on various topics, including medical ethics and managed health care, and has served as an expert witness in medical malpractice cases. He received awards from the Florida Medical Association and the Florida Hospital Association for a monthly newspaper column he wrote for a few years. After retiring from his health career he became a health care consultant, has been on the boards of several non-profit organizations, and continues to volunteer as a physician one day a week.
Most recently he has begun to pursue his lifelong interest in fiction writing. He published his first novel, A Doctor a Day, in 2017, available on Amazon as a print or e-book. It is the story of a physician who becomes emotionaly overwhelmed after caring for sick and dying patients for many years. The current book is a prequel that chronicles the internship training of the physician protagonist in the first book. These two books are part of a planned series called Everydoctor.
So, what does Bernard Mansheim do in his free time? His outside interests have included marathon running, golf and other active sports, traveling with his wife, visitng their three grown children, reading, and studying Italian. He recently co-authored with an Italian friend, a book entitled Todi Walking Tours: Self-guided Tours of an Ancient Italian Hill Town, also available at Amazon.
The author lives with his wife and their Havanese puppy Layla, in Charleston, South Carolina and Santa Fe, New Mexico.