Medicine: Halfway Wards

Earl Perry, an elderly bachelor, has primary cardiopathy, a common disease of the heart muscle. He lives alone and has a difficult time sticking to the diet necessary to control his salt intake, which is essential if he is to prevent heart failure. As a result, Perry, who also has diabetes, periodically lands in a medical ward of the Boston Veterans Administration Hospital. A year ago he would have stayed for perhaps two months in a section nominally reserved for the acutely ill, wearing hospital pajamas and attended by orderlies or nurses, until the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!