Doctors, Diseases and Drama

Doctors, Diseases and Drama

Your guide to medical TV shows

Authors : Dr. Mallika Fonseca, Dr. Shreyash Agrawal, Preeyati Chopra

We have covered where to catch these shows, how long they run for, their general vibe, how medically accurate they are and of course, provided our own recommendation score. 

Please note however, that all views are personal and reflect the (varied and excellent!) tastes of the authors. 

  1. House MD

Where to catch it: PrimeVideo

Binge time: 7 days 8 hrs 

The length of the journey: 8 seasons

Synopsis: This is a drama revolving around a diagnostician, his addictions, his critical view towards human behavior (sic. “EVERYBODY LIES”) and his blatant disregard for authority in order to get what he feels is the best for the patient.

Lisa Sanders’ monthly “Diagnosis” column in The New York Times Magazine was an inspiration for the show. 

Medically Accurate: It does bend the real world into reel, but the portrayal of how important getting a correct medical diagnosis for a patient is fairly accurate.  

Recommendation: A good watch for a Medico to begin their journey into the medical world – it inspires one to set high aspirations…

  1. Grey’s Anatomy

Where to catch it:PrimeVideo

Binge time: 15 days 3 hrs 

The length of the journey: 17 seasons (DOES IT EVER END?)

Synopsis: Another drama, dealing with the journey of doctors, which mainly focuses on personal challenges faced by them and the human side of being a doctor.

Medical Accuracy: Let’s be honest – there’s not much medicine in there, except for the first few episodes.

Recommendation: A good, peaceful meal time watch with a lot of drama and a pinch of medicine. The portrayal of the emotional aspect of medicine and the various conundrums faced by doctors at different stages of their medical career makes it worth the watch – at least for some time!

  1. The Good Doctor  

Where to catch it: PrimeVideo, 

Binge time: 2 days 8 hrs 

The length of the journey: 4 seasons

Synopsis: This is primarily a drama as well, focusing on the prejudice and difficulties faced by an autistic yet brilliant surgical resident, the ethical dilemmas and competition within the surgical team, along with the corporate aspect of running a hospital, in focus. 

Medical Accuracy: The life and responsibilities of the residents and the hospital politics are well described (for a top ranking private hospital in the USA, though), but the medical aspect is woefully dramatized.  

Recommendation: Prepares you for life as a resident, also appeals to your emotional side (if you can leave your medical knowledge aside for a short time).

  1. Lenox Hill

Where to catch it: Netflix

Binge time: 7 hrs 30 mins 

The length of the journey: 1 season (Short and smart!)

Synopsis: This is a docu-series following the real life of 4 doctors based out of a NYC hospital. It is as real as it gets, you get a look inside the real working – in real time (no scripts here). A spectacular episode is the last ‘Extra’ episode which focused on the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, March and April 2020 in New York. This  episode is a must-watch and brings the pain, despair and hope of the doctor’s to life – in a truly masterful reversal of the real to reel, this episode is medical life in its truest sense.  

Medical Accuracy: 100%

Recommendation: Definitely awe-inspiring, very realistic, a must-watch TV show. Though it might drag through the central episodes, it shows how unpredictable and incredibly delicate it is to deal with human lives. If you’re questioning your decision to pursue medicine or can’t find the motivation to continue, this show will definitely rekindle that fire. 

  1. The Resident 

Where to catch it: Hotstar

Binge time:  2 days 10 hrs 

The length of the Journey so far: 4 seasons

Synopsis: Yet another drama, revolving around residents; this one sheds a light on the ethical and moral code of the profession. At the same time it showcases the involvement of the corporate and big pharma in the running of private hospitals, and the various repercussions of a capitalist medical system.

Medical Accuracy: Fairly accurate when it comes to the handling of situations, but does show the dark side of it too.

Recommendation: A good drama which brings into focus the lines that must never be crossed in comparing Doctors to Gods.

  1. The Surgeon’s Cut

Where to catch it: Netflix

Binge time: 4 hours

The length of the journey: 1 season, 4 episodes (as yet)

Synopsis: This docu-series follows the life of 4 brilliant surgeons as they do what they do best- save lives. Astonishing is the only word which can describe the level of suspense their surgeries afford. Though not always successful, these 4 doctors bring you to imagine the level of dedication they have towards their job and the passion with which they feel medicine. 

Medical Accuracy: Again, this is as accurate as it gets. The only drama is the drama real life affords us, which, as evidenced by this series, is more than enough for a nail-biting show! 

Recommendation: To get a real insight into what it is to be the best in the field – the agony, the ecstasy and the eccentricity. For those who want a motivational push, this is what you must watch!

Word Search: DR-ama on TV
By:  Dr. Mallika Fonseca

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