Happy National Doctors Day! Today, March 30, 2020, marks the 178th anniversary of the first use of ether as a surgical anesthetic. On this date in 1842, Dr. Crawford Long administered ether to a patient before removing a tumor from the man’s neck. In 1933, Mrs. Eudora Almond, the wife of Dr. Charles Almond, chose March 30 as the date to honor physicians by sending cards to living doctors and placing flowers on the grave of the deceased. In 1991, President George H.W. Bush officially declared March 30 National Doctors Day. (source: https://nationaldaycalendar.com/days-2/national-doctors-day-march-30/)
Doctors are among those on the front lines fighting the coronavirus pandemic. They’re risking themselves, even coming out of retirement to volunteer, to contain the virus’s spread, treat infected patients, and develop effective medications and vaccines. They’re doing their heroic work in overcrowded hospitals, with insufficient equipment and supplies, and little rest. Doctors are also on the “second line,” caring for patients with conditions, such as asthma, cancer, and diabetes, unrelated to coronavirus but life-threatening/life-altering, nonetheless. So, take a moment today to thank a doctor for the work they do. They’re trying to save the world.
Also, take a moment to check out this list of medical mysteries/thrillers featuring physicians as protagonists. (Okay, Dr. Watson isn’t the protagonist, but he’s central to the stories. Where would Holmes be without his Watson?) Several of the books on the list were written by physicians.
The Hound of the Baskervilles, by Arthur Conan Doyle
Coma, by Robin Cook
The Andromeda Strain, by Michael Crichton
Resistant, by Michael Palmer
Life Support, by Tess Gerritsen
The Seneca Scourge, by Carrie Rubin
The Fifth Cataract, by Jo Bannister
Half a Mind to Murder, by Paula G. Paul
The Atlantis Plague, by A.G. RiddleThe End of October, by Lawrence Wright