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Dr. Jersild says that Enskede Hospital, the setting of his novel, should not have been built because by the time its construction was begun, Stockholm's citizens no longer needed giant hospitals, but "to change health service policies is like trying to stop an ocean liner, impossible until it is already beyond the horizon." Still, Jersild admits large hosptals are useful even if they function badly.
In an interview at the end of the book (a nice touch likely to be found only in a novel published by a university press), Dr. Jersild, a Swedish physician, reiterates his belief that physicians
House of Babel. Ann Intern Med. ;109:349. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-109-4-349_1
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1988;109(4):349.
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