New year, same old ED.
Chicago Med’s second half of season 5 picked up roughly six weeks following the dramatic events of the midseason finale.
Dr. Charles was grieving the loss of CiCi, who passed away off-screen, as we assumed. April was reeling with guilt following her kiss with Crockett and debating whether or not to tell Ethan when he came home from deployment, and Natalie and Will’s friendship remained fractured after she’d confessed her feelings for him after getting her memories back and getting rejected by him.
And from what just transpired between Will and Natalie regarding their patients, these two are not going be smoothing things over anytime soon. Or ever.
We can all agree that Will and Nat are toxic for each other as a couple, but they don’t even make good friends or partners. They have two clashing personalities — they believe they’re always right and never see eye-to-eye.
Patient care is at the center of their drama now. Will once again asked Natalie to bend the rules for a former patient, Lynne, who came back and blamed him for her oxy addiction,
She was treated by Will four years ago for a knee injury, which is when she began abusing drugs.
Will felt an enormous pang of guilt as Lynne made it very clear that she blamed him for what transpired, but Will should have known better. Despite writing out the prescription, it wasn’t his fault that she’d abused the drugs.
Moreso, the moment failed to really underline the issue of doctor’s “handing out prescription pain killers like candy.”
The statement was made, but it got lost in the hoopla of Lynne’s case and Will and Nat’s disagreement on how it should be handled.
Will wanted so badly to believe that this was a one-off situation with Lynne because it would ease his conscience, but we know addiction is a lifelong struggle. She was a patient four years ago and chances are, she has been using since then.
The rapid detox was a dangerous treatment method, but in their dire situation, one that felt necessary to help keep Lynne with her son.
Though, it was obvious even if Lynne was weaned off the addiction that she wasn’t in the right state of mind to take her son home and be his primary caregiver.
Lynne’s intentions may have been in the right place but it takes a lot of willpower to quit a bad habit. And sometimes, as we saw in this situation, loving your son isn’t motivation enough.
Did that mean Lynne should have lost her child? Absolutely not. She needed a helping hand and some guidance to set her on the right path.
It’s beyond frustrating that in these situations it’s either you keep your addiction a secret to keep a child or get help and risk losing your child. There’s truly no winning.
However, when you take a step back and take the personal out of it, Natalie did the right thing. She spoke to the son and realized this wasn’t a one-off situation as he carried Narcan in his backpack and administered it before to help revive his mother.
This was a 6-year-old boy who was taking care of a drug addict because he didn’t want to lose his mother. The realization that getting Child Protective Services involved was heartbreaking and likely not a choice Natalie wanted to make. But that’s the thing — she didn’t have a choice.
Her priority was to get the boy out of a toxic environment, which she did by calling CPS.
Now, Goodwin and Med should have handled Lynne better. They shouldn’t have approached her mid-detox when she’s at her most vulnerable to tell her they’re taking away the only thing that matters to her.
And there’s absolutely no way she should have been considered in the right state of mind to check herself out.
But that’s exactly what happened, which lead to the deadly overdose.
In a way, the drugs won out for Lynne in the end, which again, underlines the power they had over her that Will was blinded to because of his guilt.
Will will now blame Natalie for his patient’s death when it isn’t that simple. It’s not black and white, and what really needs to happen is for Will and Natalie to stop placing blame on each other for making medical calls that they see fit. It’s not personal. Natalie didn’t want to get back at Will for refusing her love. Let’s not get it confused, though, I know we will.
Then we have April and Crockett whose relationship is tense because of that one little kiss on the finale.
It’s been six weeks and April is still obsessing over it. The guilt is eating her up inside, which means that Ethan will eventually find out what happened.
It won’t be April who tells him either as she’s seemingly made up her mind about keeping it a secret, especially now that Ethan has proposed and accepted that she might never have a child.
Crockett is going to be the one to blow the whistle on it after learning of April and Ethan’s engagement.
I haven’t been able to put my finger on Crockett or whether or not he’s a good guy with good intentions, but nothing has made me dislike him either aside from his pursual of April while knowing she’s with Ethan.
All I know is that trouble is brewing for April and Ethan once the truth comes to light. If April had just come clean, Ethan might have understood that the kiss was innocent and happened in a moment of weakness and vulnerability, but by keeping it a secret, April is proving that it means a lot more.
Other Med Musings
- Noah Sexton is alright, you guys. And who knows what happened to the girl he was helping or the gang that beat him up. I guess we’re just ignoring it.
- Dr. Charles’ grief resulted in a beautiful and therapeutic karaoke piece. I love that despite being the “all-knowing” psychologist, he realizes when he himself needs help and takes advice.
- Ben is alive, thriving, and cancer-free! Woo! The same cannot be said for Maggie who is starting her radiation, but hopefully, they can both celebrate victory soon enough.
What did you think of Chicago Med’s return?
Are you over the Will and Natalie drama?
Was April right for keeping the kiss a secret from Ethan?
Chicago Med Review – Choi and Halstead Never Learn (6×07)
Dr. Choi and Dr. Halstead simply never learn.
On Chicago Med Season 6 Episode 7, they both broke hospital protocol (nothing new for them) and found every way to justify their actions.
When Vera, the first patient Halstead enrolled in his experimental clinical drug trial, came in experiencing strange symptoms, the immediate assumption was that medication was to blame.
However, Dr. Halstead didn’t want to unbind Vera to see if she was on the drug or a placebo, nor did he want to report the situation to Kender’s medical board without checking off all the other boxes first because he knew that would mean they’d pull the drug trial completely.
While it seemed like Halstead cared more about the trial initially, he made it clear that he didn’t want to hurt all the other patients currently benefitting from the drug, which was fair.
When they kept mentioning how great Mr. Booker was doing because of the trial, I was convinced he would waltz into the ED halfway through the episode experiencing similar symptoms.
But since no one else in the trial had these responses, Halstead was led to believe it was something entirely unrelated.
To be absolutely sure that he could rule out the medication, Halstead went behind Sabeena and the company’s back to unbind Vera, which is unethical.
Of course, when Halstead figured out that Vera’s symptoms were caused by a tumor that was pressing on Vera’s pituitary gland, he figured that his actions didn’t really matter because the end-result protected the trial.
But the simple fact that he almost came clean to Sabeena means that he’s aware, even subconsciously, that his behavior is shady.
He broke her trust, and he knew that telling her would ruin their working relationship and potential future relationship.
Sabeena would never trust Halstead if she knew what he did, but now that he asked her out, it’ll be even worse if she finds out later on when they’ve grown closer in their personal lives.
Halstead can’t ever get it right.
The worst part is that he roped April into it and now, she’s forced to keep this secret.
Dr. Choi was equally as bad because he came into work after having his gallbladder removed that very morning. Doctors, aka the people who are supposed to know better, are their own worst enemies sometimes!
After collapsing in the middle of his own ED, Choi explained that he didn’t want to shirk his responsibilities, but truthfully, he put himself and his colleagues in danger.
With a fever of 102, there was no way he was making sound decisions or performing his best. It would have been better for everyone if he simply took the time to heal.
The role has taken quite a toll on him, and I thought that his aches and fever were due to exhaustion, which would have jived with the previous storyline introduced on Chicago Med Season 6 Episode 6 where he barely left the hospital and drank way too much coffee in order to stay awake.
The most interesting part of Choi’s situation was that he wasn’t just trying to do a good job like he told himself and others. Instead, he was trying to prove himself just like Dr. Charles’ patient Dr. Cohen.
Since taking on the role of Chief, Choi seems to have Imposter Syndrome. He’s qualified, he’s dedicated, he does a good job, but he constantly feels inadequate, so he pushes himself to do more and do better, which ultimately ends up in burnout.
Thankfully, his case wasn’t as bad as Dr. Cohen’s, who was an example of a worst-case scenario. The man was having delusions and competing with a dead guy simply to prove he was the best and deserved his spot in the department.
It’s illuminating to see the stock and value we put into careers in this country; so many people turn into workaholics because without a successful career they deem themselves worthless.
Where do we draw the line? When do we realize we shouldn’t value ourselves based on the jobs we have?
Crockett’s storyline continues to be heartbreaking. As he deals with cancer patient after cancer patient, it’s become clear that he has to finally come to terms with the past, which he’s been putting off and internalizing all this time.
Thankfully, he has Natalie. And she has him.
You know, I think Natalie got it right this time. They not only make a great team, but they’re such a great couple.
Natalie has been supportive from the beginning and never pushed him to share his story until he was ready.
Crockett was initially standoffish and very protective about his past, but he’s since opened up to the point where he allowed her to be by his side when he opened the box of his daughter’s belongings. It was a huge and touching moment.
There’s never going to be a time where it’s easy for Crockett to deal with cancer cases, especially malignant ones that have metastasized and come with a timeline.
Breaking the news to patients is never easy, and standing by as a witness to a rushed wedding isn’t either because he of all people knows the pain and suffering that will follow in a few months to a year.
Sharon Goodwin dealt with her son, who she felt overstepped in the OR by trying to upsell medical parts. It was a bland storyline, and at this point, I don’t think Chicago Med really knows what to do with Michael’s character.
As for Maggie, she continues to get pushed down every time she tries to pick herself back up. After successfully finding Auggie a liver donor, she and Ben filed to officially adopt the young boy, who is already calling them “mom and dad.”
Everything was perfect, but then the ancestry site she used hoping to find a match for Auggie turned up a brother and the adoptive parents reached out to see if the boys could meet.
While it’s great that Auggie has a biological family member, it’s obviously scary for Maggie because there’s a chance that Kenshaw’s parents will want to adopt Auggie or that Auggie will want to live with his brother. And I don’t know much about the adoption system, but is it possible they’d want to place Auggie with his brother?
I truly hope that isn’t the case because Maggie’s new family makes my heart melt every time they’re on the screen. They belong together.
What do you think will happen with Auggie?
What did you think of the episode? Sound off in the comments section below!
Chicago Med Review – A Good Day in the ED (6×06)
It’s always a welcome surprise when there’s good news in the ED.
And there was no shortage on Chicago Med Season 6 Episode 6, which tackled many of the issues introduced the week prior including Anna’s unexpected pregnancy, Choi’s decision to fire Noah, and Auggie’s need for a liver transplant.
While things seemed bleak at first, by the end of the hour, everyone’s luck was looking up.
Dr. Charles accidentally stumbled upon family planning pamphlets that fell out of Anna’s coat, which was probably for the best because Anna really needed her dad more than she realized. That was especially true when she began bleeding and learned that she had a chemical pregnancy.
This was obviously a relief for someone Anna’s age, but it’s likely going to lead to a pretty nasty fight between Dr. Charles and his ex-wife, whose need to be in control seems to be alienating her family, particularly her daughter.
Anna didn’t even want Charles to tell her mom the truth because she was afraid of her reaction. And just imagine what that reaction will be when she thinks that Charles has been deliberately keeping something this big from her.
I love that Dr. Charles didn’t freak out on Anna even though every bone in his body was probably telling him to. Anna was already scared as it is, so it was reassuring that her dad kept a cool head and approached the situation as though she were an adult. She realized she made a careless mistake — she didn’t need to be punished for it even more.
I’m also happy that Charles didn’t seem to blame Nat at all. Would he have liked a heads up? Yes. But he also understands the situation Natalie was placed in and that HIPA required full confidentiality on her part.
Rules as rules. Some rules, however, don’t have the patient’s best interest at heart.
With his liver failing, Auggie was running out of time.
While Maggie may not be his legal mother, she is his caretaker and should have been able to sign off on a liver transplant, especially since he doesn’t have any other family around to fight for him.
It’s crazy to think that a child that has someone in his corner still might not get the necessary help because of legalities. Why is the system set up to fail those who rely on it?
The liver may have been compromised, but it assured that he had a fighting chance to deal with any problems down the line.
I can’t understand how DCFS would stand behind a rule that basically gave the A-OK to leave a dying child without any options.
Auggie is lucky to have such a firecracker like Maggie by his side. She never gave up and wasn’t willing to take no for an answer. It was sweet to see him call her “mom” and prompted her decision to legally adopt him. After all, they’re already acting like his parents!
Sharon Goodwin signed off on the surgery, which was risky, but what would it say about her if she stood by and let an innocent boy die because of some blanket rule? In this case, the rule was meant to be bent. And she’s right — DCFS doesn’t want that kind of bad PR. The public would not be kind if they found out that they stood by idly and let a child die.
Still, I don’t think she’s in the clear just yet. She’ll eventually have to answer for signing off on the life-saving surgery and overriding the rules. But for now, let’s just rejoice in the fact that Auggie is thriving!
Dr. Halstead has always been a great ED doctor, but following the rules, well, that’s not his strong suit.
When Choi went back on his word and told him he wouldn’t give him time for his presentation, Dr. Halstead blatantly disregarded his orders. He’s never been happy to have lost out on the promotion to Choi, but in this case, he also understood that he made a commitment to the trial.
I can’t say that I disagree with Halstead’s decision either. He’s passionate about saving lives and that includes getting the word out about the trial and its potential effectiveness. And as he mentioned, the trial is sanctioned by the hospital, so it indirectly benefits Choi.
Dr. Choi also wasn’t being fair to Halstead; he knew how important the presentation was to him and refused to be flexible. There was obviously a way to staff the ED and give Halstead the hour since he managed to sneak out anyway and all of his patients were covered.
I’m into Halstead considering a transition from the ED to a full-time gig with clinical trials. Maybe it really is time for a change. However, I can’t shake the feeling that Sabina is trying to rope him into something. Could it be because Halstead is always being roped into weird situations?
Also, are they ever going to go on a date? It’s so obvious that they’re into each other, let’s get this romance moving!
Choi’s been having a tough time wrangling his staff, which is only making his job harder.
The fact that he hasn’t slept and has just been running on coffee is concerning and a sign of how rigorous the job of Chief of the ED truly is.
I figured that because of the “no sleep” situation, Choi would end up fumbling and putting a patient at risk, which would question his ability to handle the job responsibilities but that wasn’t the case.
Even with an empty tank, Choi remained committed to his patients and helped the Bowmans figure out a health issue plaguing Mr. Bowman for over a year.
Bowman was continuously misdiagnosed by other doctors, which explained the aggression, irritability, and disregard for the profession, but once Choi put his mind to it, he figured it out. Isn’t it great that Mr. Bowman no longer has to suffer?
Also, how awesome is Dr. Abrams and his blunt responses?
This was also the first time in a while that April not only acknowledged Choi’s hard work but also understood how difficult his new role must be since he can’t please everyone. She saw firsthand the toll it was taking on him and likely realized she’s only been making things harder on him.
It’s unclear if the series wants to get these two back together, but their storylines continue to revolve around each other months after their split. What gives?
Manning and Crockett treated a patient who became dizzy and fell, and while it wasn’t evident on her CT, the young woman, Cindy, had a malignant tumor in her stomach.
She chose not to get it removed, which didn’t sit well with either of the doctors, but sadly, there wasn’t much they could do; Cindy made her choice, which was to live with a deadly tumor as she didn’t want to undergo all the painful treatments she’d seen her mom undergo only to pass away anyway.
Eventually, Crockett realized he needed to make it personal if he had any shot of convincing Cindy.
His speech about his one-year-old daughter being a fighter pulled at the heartstrings. You could tell it took a lot out of Crockett to relive the past and be open about it, especially since he tends to keep his personal matters under wraps.
However, it worked and Cindy agreed to fight for her life. It’s better to die trying than to not try at all.
This connected back to his visit from his ex, who left him a box of belongings and memories after she sold the house. The one box, in particular, held all of his daughter, Harper’s, things, and though he thought maybe he’d finally be able to face it, he broke down crying looking at the memories.
At this point, Crockett is my favorite character. It’s been enjoyable and revealing to peel back his layers and learn more about his past.
The episode also saw the return of Kelly Bisset, the kidnapping victim who was reunited with her mother on Chicago Med Season 6 Episode 3.
In my review of that episode, I noted that the case wrapped up too quickly and left so many questions unanswered.
There was a lot of promise in revisiting the case, but sadly, it didn’t provide audiences with any of the answers like what happened to her prior to getting to the hospital, how she got to the hospital, where was she held, and who kidnapped her.
We did, however, see the aftermath and shock that Kelly endured upon returning to her childhood home, which was welcome.
She was having a hard time adjusting as she didn’t have any of the “happy memories” that her mother kept referring to and reminding her of.
The fact that she couldn’t connect or be that girl for her mother made her feel inadequate and she decided to jump out of a moving vehicle to make the feelings go away.
While talking with both Kelly and her mom, Dr. Charles realized that neither of them remembered much about Kelly’s childhood and that’s because her mother was making a lot of it up. She felt guilty for not being more present when Kelly was a child.
It was heartbreaking, but at least Dr. Charles helped both of them realize that the key to bonding now was to do less and make new memories. They could never change or recapture the past, but the future was theirs for the taking.
It wasn’t the best use of the hour, but it was nice to see the series return to a previous case and build on it.
What did you think of the episode? Let us know in the comments below!
Chicago Med Review – [SPOILER] Is Pregnant (6×05)
The line between doing the right thing and doing what you think is right becomes a bit blurry on Chicago Med Season 6 Episode 5, which sees the brief return of Noah Sexton.
An elderly couple is brought into the ED after being found unconscious due to a gas leak.
Noah immediately recognizes that the man is Mr. Coleman, a legend in Chicago for his work opening free clinics on the South Side.
When his wife dies, Coleman confesses to staging the whole thing so that his wife could find peace following her ALS diagnosis. Since he realized he couldn’t live without her, the plan was for them to both die and have the cause be an accidental gas leak.
Unfortunately, he didn’t die, which means that what he did is technically considered murder.
Noah and Marcel both felt for Coleman and tried to explain that what he did was assist his wife in ending her life. However, Dr. Choi doesn’t see it that way because he follows a moral code. Not reporting it to the police would be an obstruction of justice.
Dr. Choi has been Chief for a few weeks now, and it seems that the crux of his job is to get into situations that find him pushing back against his staff.
While it’s not a good position to find yourself in, I can definitely see Noah’s perspective. Coleman wasn’t a risk to anyone, and he wasn’t going to go out and kill other people. He was simply acting on his wife’s wish to ease her pain and suffering.
It’s easy to judge from the outside looking in, but imagine watching the person you love wither away in pain and not being able to do anything about it.
Noah then decided that he wasn’t going to watch a good, noble man get wrongfully punished, so he slipped Coleman a syringe with a deadly dose and looked away as he injected himself.
The situation gets murky here because technically, Noah broke a law and should be reported, but on the other hand, he helped a man die on his own terms who didn’t deserve to rot in prison.
The only thing Noah truly fudged, in my opinion, was not giving it his all to sell the story. Choi could never prove any foul play even if he suspected Noah of it. Noah could’ve said it was an accident and there would be no way of proving he did anything on purpose.
But Noah put zero effort into selling that narrative and basically admitted to assisting Coleman.
April naturally got dragged into it and begged Choi not to report Noah to the police and destroy his whole medical career.
When push came to shove, Choi couldn’t bring himself to throw Noah under the bus, but he did fire him for negligence. And Noah didn’t even try to fight that because he stood by his decision to help Coleman.
I’d respect Choi if the decision was based solely on his opinion, but instead, he made it because he was pressured by April.
I’m not a fan of April constantly trying to leverage her past relationship with Choi to get her way. It happens almost every episode and it’s tiring.
They have a personal relationship, but it doesn’t mean that Choi needs to take that into consideration when weighing options on how to handle an issue.
April also went at it with Dr. Halstead when she tried to get her previous COVID patient into his clinical trial.
She wasn’t exactly wrong about the trial being skewed and biased to exclude minorities who are more at risk for heart failure in the first place, but she shouldn’t have come at Halstead so hard. She tends to be so out of line. She blamed him as if he was solely responsible instead of acknowledging that he’s simply following the rules and trying to make a change for the better in any way that he can.
He eventually caved and rigged Booker’s test so that he could meet the criteria for the trial, but what happens when that comes back to bite them? Guidelines are set up for a reason to protect a patient. They could’ve made an on-the-books exception, but trying to alter his tests to qualify him seems shady.
Natalie’s case was the most interesting as it focused on Anna, Dr. Charles’ daughter. While he was embroiled in a nasty custody case with his ex, who wanted to move her and her daughter to Arizona for a job, Anna came to Natalie to get birth control pills under the radar.
Seeing that Anna wanted to be safe without triggering her parents, Natalie agreed to run some labs on the down-low. And she realized there was no need for birth control because Anna was already pregnant.
Now, seeing as though there’s a custody battle, Anna is definitely under 18. Because of patient confidentiality, Natalie legally cannot say anything to Dr. Charles, but Anna will eventually have to, especially when things get even more intense between her parents.
Dr. Charles is very understanding when it comes to his patients, but how will he react when he learns his baby girl might have a baby of her own?
Natalie also realized she was ready to embrace her fling with Marcel, which is awesome, but the moment was interrupted by his ex-wife, Claire.
It didn’t seem like Claire was interested in getting back together with him, but does she plan on moving back to Chicago now that she sold her house? I have a sneaking suspicion that she didn’t come all this way just to give her ex back some of his things.
Will she come between Nat and Marcel? Will she give us more insight into his past?
And then there’s poor Maggie, who found out that Auggie’s Hereditary and Me test didn’t return any relatives who could provide a kidney.
Maggie has gone through so much. We’re so used to seeing her as a strong-willed woman, but it was nice to see her open up to Dr. Charles and admit that sometimes, she just wants to be vulnerable.
Even when she and Ben were battling cancer, Maggie persevered and never allowed herself to be weak.
It’s nice to see this new side of her that just feels helpless and defeated because it’s normal. She doesn’t have to be strong all the time; she doesn’t always have to hold it together. And that’s especially true as she watches a young boy that she loves face death because he cannot find a donor and isn’t considered sick enough to be bumped to the top of the list despite only having a short time to live.
The system is so flawed, it’s disgusting. Will Maggie figure something out to save Auggie?
What did you think of the episode? Was Noah out of line? Should Choi have reported him? What would you have done? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!
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