The real McCoy

If you enjoy fly-on-the-wall medical documentaries, then hold on to your seat as another series of Surgeons is about to begin. Following on from the success of the series produced by Mint Productions last year, this three-part observational documentary series returns to capture the real lives of both the practitioners and the patients in our hospitals. Prepare to be amazed.

The first programme looks at organ transplant surgery and the work of Oscar Traynor in St. Vincent’s Hospital and Freddie Wood in the Mater Hospital, in Dublin. The series also looks at some of the issues facing the health service today: waiting lists, public versus private practice, centres of excellence and hospital politics.

This is no docudrama. It’s the real thing and it provides an excellent insight into what goes on in our hospitals. The series uncovers some powerful human stories at the cutting edge of Irish medicine. If you’re squeamish, this may not be for you. Otherwise, I highly recommend it.

Thursday 22 May on RTÉ 1 @ 10.15pm. Don’t miss it!

14 Responses to The real McCoy

  1. Grannymar says:

    Thanks Steph,

    I know someone who needs to watch that series.

  2. Surely not you Grannymar ….

  3. Steph …. I reckon you’d make a great Minister for Health & Children!

  4. Roy says:

    I’m forced to watch these by my nursey wife and daughter, doesn’t mean I like em though!

  5. Steph says:

    GM – I know you choose not to have a television and I totally respect that. I’m very choosy about what I’ll watch but this ‘real life’ medical stuff is a must-see for me. I’ve NO interest in any medical soaps whatsoever. About 10 years ago, I recorded an excellent series on the reality of being a doctor and gave it to a student I knew who was dithering about whether or not to do medicine. I met her Mum last week and she told me that her daughter had just finished her intern year. She did a degree in Dietetics first, to sound out the ground and then went on to train as a doctor. These series are invaluable for doctors-to-be as well as patients.

    Paddy – nah! If that’s what you look like after three years in the job, no thanks!

    Roy – you don’t know how lucky you are! Anyway, you’ll probably be out on the beat when this series is on the box so you should be okay 🙂

  6. Bendy Girl says:

    Sounds a great show, I’ll look out for it, BG

  7. Steph says:

    Hi! BG

    Here in Ireland, we can help ourselves to the UK channels but I would very much doubt if you can pick up RTE television from where you are? Mint Productions are always well worth watching out for – real life stories from ‘real’ people plus lots of medical coverage. We’ll have to get them to feature EDS one day!

  8. Ian says:

    Freddie Wood is a hero.

    I won’t be watching the programme though – there’s the danger I’d faint. I can cope in ICUs and such places until I stop to think about it!

  9. Steph says:

    Ian – I agree, I’ve heard great things about Freddie Wood, both as a surgeon and as an all-round nice guy. I also know that he is a biker – saves him time between hospitals and probably lives as well.

  10. Baino says:

    We have a similar one here based at the Royal Alfred hospital. It’s fascinating except they always manage to do some gory surgery just as we’re sitting down to eat!

  11. Hmm, sounds like the sort of thing that would be on just when I’m having dinner and I’m afraid that’s more than I can cope with. But sounds like a good series, Steph. Hope it provides the kind of insights that are needed.

  12. Steph says:

    Thanks guys!

    It was fantastic stuff. A real insight into the lives of seriously ill patients, and their relatives. It was fascinating to witness how a transplant team works in selecting patients for their waiting list and the sheer commitment of everyone involved to achieve a successful transplant.

    For me one of the most revealing parts of the programme was when a patient with severe liver disease was told he urgently needed a liver transplant. Although he knew this was highly likely, he didn’t let himself believe it until he was told. It was a lovely example of how the human spirit keeps people positive in times of stress. His reaction was not one of fear at what lay ahead but more his shock at the fact that a transplant was now reality. Both of the patients featured in the programme showed remarkable resilience in the face of adversity, very much in keeping with a lifetime of chronic illness.

    This week’s programme features the high-risk world of neuro-surgery. If you’d like an insider’s view into the Irish health service, I cannot recommend it more highly.

  13. rwtrader says:

    Want to see a real life drama? Read my “book” that I put together while I was in the hospital at Ignore all the other stuff – I just use it to finance the site.

  14. Steph says:

    Hello! rwtrader

    You’ve sure been through the mill. That’s some documentation you’ve done on your own kidney/pancreas transplant. I’m sure it’ll prove to be a useful resource to others facing a similar journey. Keep well!

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