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100 Days of Memoirs to Nourish the Soul for Social Distancing Memoir Bookclub

Social Distancing Memoir Bookclub During Coronavirus Times

100 Days of Memoirs to Nourish the Soul

DAY 84: June 13, 2020

Cooked

by Carol Karels

In May 1971, Look magazine featured an article entitled “Chicago’s Cook County Hospital: A Terrible Place.” The article provided an in-depth look at the largest public hospital in the country, one located on Chicago’s dangerous gang-controlled and drug-infested West Side. Months later, the author, then a na├»ve suburban teen, and one hundred other nursing students, began their training there, despite newspaper articles that warned that the hospital might close any day. At ‘the County,’ where nurse duties included swatting flies in the OR and delousing patients, both nurses and doctors were expected to provide care under the most desperate of circumstances. Cooked provides an inside look at the 2,000-bed ghetto hospital, often referred to as a “19th-century sick house,” that provided health care to millions of Chicago’s poor.

Yearning for Magic

COPYRIGHT MELISSA BURCH, 2020