Medicine like it’s 1699

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I was helping a colleague with a chart check late one dark and stormy night, and came across a progress note from the chaplain.

Intrigued by the content and noting he was responding to an order in the system, I went searching for the order itself. A couple of pages down, I found it and it read:


Spiritual Care Consult – Reason: possible demonic possession.

Now, granted, the patient was all sorts of crazy, alternating between catatonic states and rabid manic outbursts. She looked much like the freaky chick from The Ring. Acting like a stark raving mad lunatic may seem to generate a need for an exorcism, but we’re not that society anymore. While I think that putting people in the stocks for petty crimes might be a good thing and that we’re using leeches for medical therapy, maybe we’ve moved past the time where issues of the psyche were cured by the exorcisms of the “unclean” spirit.

Or have we?

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