April 2, 2019

ER 3.16, Faith: Well, I Guess It Would Be Nice If Greg Could Touch Your Body

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , at 5:06 pm by Jenn

What’s worse, Carla’s hat or her coat?

Summary: Carol’s asleep – drink! Her mother’s making breakfast and trying to take care of her after the hostage situation. Carol insists that she’s fine; she sees worse things at her job than she saw in the convenience store. Helen notes that it’s a big day, as Carol’s supposed to find out if she still has a job. Carol is also preparing for the MCAT, which Helen thought she gave up on.

She tries to encourage Carol, who doesn’t believe that Helen actually thinks she can become a doctor. She wishes her mother had told her from a young age that she could be anything she wants, like a lawyer or an astronaut. “Fine. Go be an astronaut,” Helen says. She’ll love Carol no matter what she does. Carol’s the one who holds herself back, since she often quits because she’s worried she’s not good enough. That includes her wedding. Helen reminds Carol that she has a good job now and a good life. Helen’s proud of her; Carol just needs to be proud of herself.

Benton catches Carla on her way to work and apologizes for not being in touch since she told him she’s pregnant. She’s annoyed that he’s kept his distance, which tells her a lot about his plans for the baby. Benton is ready to pick up his share of the responsibilities, but she’s not convinced that he’s going to be a stable presence in the baby’s life. She thinks he just wants to contribute money. Benton wants his child to have a man in his life, but Carla notes that the man in the child’s life might not be him. She knows Benton only worries about himself, so she’s not expecting anything from him.

Benton goes to work, his first day back since his appendectomy, and for some reason, everyone wants to see his scar. These people are weird. Carter gleefully shows around the pictures he took of his handiwork. He’s also keeping the appendix in a jar on his mantle. Okay, creepy. Mark sees the nurses chatting, and Jerry mentions that their contracts are up again. Haleh’s sure that things will work out.

Paramedics bring in a woman named Louise who has Down syndrome and is having trouble breathing. Doyle detects a heart issue, probably the after-effect of an illness Louise had recently. Carol meets with Mary from management, who tells her she’ll get a written warning in her file, but as of today, she can get back to work. Carol’s surprised that her punishment is so light, but she can’t be disappointed that the whole ordeal is over.

Jeanie and Greg have worked things out – yay! – and now she wants to go to the opera. He’s not really interested, but she wants to do something spontaneous and romantic. Greg isn’t sure what’s romantic about the opera. Jeanie may be starting to regret this relationship.

Louise’s mother, Mrs. Cupertino, arrives, and Mark asks about Louise’s general status and mental competency. He’s surprised that Louise isn’t on a waiting list for a heart transplant, since she’s sick enough to have needed one for a while. Mrs. C. says they won’t put her on the list because of her mental delays. Hicks checks on Benton to make sure he’s recovering well from his surgery. He thinks she’s trying to see if he’s physically ready, but she’s showing actual human concern for his health and well-being.

Doyle’s upset that UNOS, the transplant coordination service, won’t put Louise on a transplant list because she has Down syndrome. Mark thinks there must be something else going on, but when they talk to the long-missing Kayson, he won’t even admit Louise to the hospital. The hospital transplant committee, not UNOS, refused to put her on the list. She’s in her 30s, and most people with Down’s don’t live to be much older than that, so there’s no point in giving her a new heart.

Doyle objects, but Kayson doesn’t care what she thinks, since she’s just a first-year resident. Mark tries to play peacemaker while still siding with Doyle to advocate for Louise. Kayson says he’d love to give her a new heart, but the committee has made its decision.

The nurses are thrilled to have Carol back at work (especially Haleh, who gets to hand back her supervisory duties). Weaver’s also pleased to have a competent person running things again. Carol says everything’s fine with her, as if she’s surprised that everyone thinks she should be having post-traumatic stress or something.

Carter examines a woman named Mrs. Jarnowski who, despite having some stomach pain, is in better health than she should be based on her diet. She says she eats the same way her mother did, and her mother only died the year before, at age 96, in a car accident. Carter yawns in the middle of their conversation, which is totally professional. He thinks Mrs. J. needs a surgical consult.

As Mark examines Louise, Mrs. C. tells Mark and Doyle that before Louise got sick, she was living in her own place, working, and serving as an altar girl at church. Mark gets a list of the members of the transplant committee, making Doyle eager to see the jerks responsible for rejecting Louise. Mark tells her to watch her attitude.

Doug welcomes Carol back to work, then mentions that he knows the MCAT is that afternoon. Carol has decided not to take it, since med school is a lot of work and would cost a lot of money. He offers to help her out if she changes her mind. Haleh tells Carter that Anspaugh is checking out Mrs. J., even though he wanted Hicks to do her consult. Anspaugh thought it was a good teaching case, but nothing stands out to him as too serious. Dale agrees, because of course he does.

Mark tracks down Nina, who was on the transplant committee. Since Kayson was on board with giving Louise the transplant, she must have been rejected for non-medical reasons. Mark thinks if he can get Nina and one other doctor to change their minds, Louise will get a new heart. Nina says their decision has to be unanimous, but she did reject Louise.

Mark asks if Louise’s life is less important than someone else’s. Nina argues that she isn’t competent to understand the situation and won’t be able to take care of herself afterward. The heart would go to waste. Mark starts to leave, then turns back to tell Nina that all her excuses are bureaucratic things she tells herself so she can sleep at night. Louise makes people happy, and she has as much right to live as anyone else. Nina’s decision will lead to her death.

Greg takes Jeanie to a picnic in the park, which would be a great, spontaneous, romantic idea if it weren’t February in Chicago. Jeanie at least appreciates the effort. He’s spontaneous again when he announces that he thinks it’s time for them to have sex. Well, probably not right there in the park. Jeanie isn’t sure Greg gets what a big step that is, but he’s completely ready for it.

Mrs. J. is having trouble breathing now, and she’s in more pain. Her daughter, Yolanda, tells Carter that Mrs. J. is usually pretty stoic, so if she’s complaining of pain, it must be mad. Instead of calling Anspaugh back, Carter tells Haleh to page Hicks. Benton’s big task for the day is a circumcision on a man who wants to convert to Judaism for his fiancée. He wishes he’d known earlier that this would be a condition of the relationship. Hicks brings in some people to observe, then goes to the ER.

A doctor named Ewing calls Doug to pediatrics for an update on Jad. It’s his 18th birthday, and he’s signed a DNR. He wants Doug to take him off the respirator, even though he probably won’t live more than a few minutes after that. He’s sure of his decision and has said goodbye to his mother and girlfriend, so Doug agrees to honor his wishes. Jad struggles for a minute off the respirator, then surprises Doug by stabilizing.

Carter tells Hicks that he disagrees with Anspaugh’s diagnosis of Mrs. J. Hicks tells Haleh to page Anspaugh as Carter gives his theory – a heart problem that threw a clot that’s now affecting her bowel. Anspaugh comes straight from lunch with Weaver and, to his credit, immediately agrees with Carter’s assessment. He rushes Mrs. J. to surgery, though Hicks tells Yolanda she’ll be fine. Anspaugh’s so impressed with Carter’s work that he allows him to take lead on the operation.

Mark returns to Louise’s room, where she’s playing Jenga with someone named Jimmy. Doyle reveals that Jimmy’s her brother; she brought him to keep Louise company. Mark tells Doyle what Nina said, and Doyle disagrees with all of it. Mark suggests that they call another hospital to get on their transplant list. But then Nina comes by with the paperwork Mrs. C. needs to fill out to get Louise on the transplant list after all.

Doug tries to make a deal with Jad that will let him go off and do whatever he wants during the day, then spend the night at the hospital. Jad isn’t interested, no matter how much extra time that could give him. Doug tries to give Jad his home phone number in case he needs anything, but Jad isn’t interested in that either. Katie takes the number after he leaves.

The nurses got their new contract, so Jerry raids the hospital cafeteria for celebratory cake. Doug looks for Carol, but Weaver says she changed her mind about working immediately after her return and went home earlier. Mark tells Doyle that the transplant committee is ready to put Louise on the list, but Doyle tells him that now Mrs. C. won’t sign the surgical release. Kayson and Doyle both made it clear that Louise will die without a transplant, but Mrs. C. just wants to take her daughter home.

Mark tries his hand at talking to Louise’s mother. She says she was 41 when Louise was born, and the doctor advised Mrs. C. to put her in a state hospital. Mark repeats that Louise will die without a transplant. Mrs. C. and Louise only have each other, and Mrs. C. doesn’t want her daughter in a group home after Mrs. C. dies. She knows Jesus will be waiting for both Louise and Mrs. C. when they die, and Mrs. C. will next see her daughter in Heaven.

While Benton bores Hicks’ students with a dull procedure, and proves why he should never be a teacher, Carter gets ready for Mrs. J.’s surgery. The student has surpassed the master! Mark and Doug meet up in the lounge and recount their depressing workdays. They wish they could have done more with their medical skills today. Mark suggests they get dinner together, but Doug wants to head out and help an old friend.

Greg has decided to suck it up and go to the opera after all. Jeanie thinks he’s trying to prove something to her, and promises that they can slow things down if they’re moving too fast. Greg’s like, “Instead of that, can we skip the opera?” Jeanie is really the one who wants to take things more slowly.

Carol gets home to find Doug waiting for her, knowing she took the MCAT after all. She felt old, and though she had to make a lot of guesses, she also knew more than she’d expected. She invites him in for coffee, but he says he needs to get up early. Carol assures him once again that she’s fine after the hostage situation. Doug asks why she took the MCAT. She says she took it for herself – she wanted to see if she was good enough. He promises she is.

Benton’s day of boring procedures is over, but he’s still hanging out in an OR when Hicks comes by. He admits that she was right to question how he’s been coping with everything that’s happened to him over the past few months, like Gant’s death and almost killing that baby. His life isn’t working out the way he’d expected. Hicks tells him he’s not responsible for Gant’s death, but Benton knows he could have been a better mentor.

He wishes he could say he had a master plan, but honestly, he never thought about Gant. He was just an intern; Benton had more important things to worry about. Hicks tells him he’s not invincible, and all doctors have to learn and grow in their careers. It’s a lifelong process. Benton just needs to have faith. Hicks sends him home, promising that his procedures the next day will be a better use of his skills.

Thoughts: Being Carol’s mother must be exhausting.

Carol took one science class a few months ago and suddenly she’s ready for the MCAT? Also, that plot eventually just fizzles out – I wonder if they ever intended to do more with it.

Jad’s first act as a legal adult should have been to change his name.

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