Crazy All the Time: Life, Lessons, & Insanity Psych Ward of Bellevue Hospital

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9780671791599: Crazy All the Time: Life, Lessons, & Insanity Psych Ward of Bellevue Hospital
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A chronicle of nine doctoral candidates and their year-long internship in the psychiatric ward of New York's famous and notorious Bellevue Hospital captures the chaos, stress, challenges, and rewards of the psychiatric profession. 25,000 first printing.

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From Kirkus Reviews:

Disorder and chaos at Manhattan's world-famous Bellevue Hospital Department of Psychiatry, told with bold first-person gallows humor by its scooter-riding chief psychologist since 1980, and by Kahn (the deftly eloquent Beyond the Double Helix, 1985). The title tells it all: life is crazy all the time at Bellevue's psych ward, in part because budget cuts make timely processing of paperwork impossible, leave no money for forms, pencils, Rorschach tests--Dr. Covan has to replace his typist with toneless, wall-staring Yolanda, a paranoid schizo outpatient who is Josephine (``Yolanda's not here today''). Meanwhile, Covan crunches through black farce every minute of his day, with five calls waiting, people pulling on his sleeve, hospital services collapsing--even the floor splits open like gunfire. We follow his monitoring of the training of nine doctoral candidates in clinical psychology during their internship, with each chapter opening up one or two cases. First intern is David Anderson--cocky, clean-cut, gym-fit, and vitamin-fed--who needs to be loosened up so he can relate to patients like Matthew, a Pentecostal ``failure at independent living'' who's cut off his penis, just had it sewn back on against his will, and won't talk with David, who must break through Matthew's defenses within his 35-day hospitalization or see him return with another penisectomy. Trainee Keisha Wright faces a manipulative guy on the psychiatric prison ward who swallows razor blades, nuts and bolts, whatever--is he faking madness to land an insanity plea to keep him out of prison? And so it goes: interns learn to feel deeply about other people and face their own feelings in dealing with them. Dr. Covan shows great natural wisdom while reality-testing his coven of trainee shrinks. Memorable, indeed. -- Copyright ©1994, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

From Publishers Weekly:

Covan, who is Chief Psychologist at Manhattan's Bellevue Hospital, chronicles the crises faced by nine doctoral candidates in clinical psychology during their internship year at Bellevue's Department of Psychiatry. With warmth and humor, and at a pace reflecting events at the hospital, Covan and science writer Kahn ( Beyond the Helix ) vividly portray the interns, among them prim Kitty; feminist Elizabeth; Gary, the assured son of an eminent psychoanalyst; and naive Wayne. Limned with equal regard are the patients: AIDS victim and widow Inez, who suffers a severe depression; paranoid schizophrenic Brenda, who maintains only a fragile hold on independence; Sid, a patient from a local prison who swallows razors and shards of glass. One intern falls in love with a patient; a patient obsesses about an intern and develops a hysterical pregnancy. Although some of the intertwined stories suggest a hint of contrivance, the book's lively prose and broad sympathies make for absorbing reading.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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