Slow Medicine: The Way to Healing Info

Find out the best Medical Books 2019 - Reviews & Buyer's Guide. Discover our community's huge selection of medical books and ebooks and read hundreds of reviews for each title. Read&Download Slow Medicine: The Way to Healing by Victoria Sweet Online


"Wonderful... Physicans would do well to learn this most
important lesson about caring for patients
." The
New York Times Book Review

 
Over the years
that Victoria Sweet has been a physician, “healthcare” has
replaced medicine, “providers” look at their laptops more
than at their patients, and costs keep soaring, all in the ruthless
pursuit of efficiency. Yet the remedy that economists and policy makers
continue to miss is also miraculously simple. Good medicine takes more
than amazing technology; it takes time—time to respond to bodies
as well as data, time to arrive at the right diagnosis and the right
treatment.
 
Sweet knows this because she has learned and
lived it over the course of her remarkable career. Here she relates
unforgettable stories of the teachers, doctors, nurses, and patients
through whom she discovered the practice of Slow Medicine, in which she
has been both pioneer and inspiration. Medicine, she helps us to see, is
a craft and an art as well as a science. It is relational, personal,
even spiritual. To do it well requires a hard-won wisdom that no
algorithm can replace—that brings together “fast” and
“slow” in a truly effective, efficient, sustainable, and
humane way of healing. 

Average Ratings and Reviews
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Reviews for Slow Medicine: The Way to Healing:

5

Feb 24, 2018

"Medicine is not only a craft and a science, but an art. It had something unexplainable about it, which was its heart."

***

In an era in which modern medicine is dominated by doctors typing on their laptops instead of listening to and examining their patients, this book is timely, relevant, and extraordinarily insightful. Victoria Sweet's experience is not only invaluable in making the argument that doctors should return to the traditional practice of medicine; she argues that medicine is just as "Medicine is not only a craft and a science, but an art. It had something unexplainable about it, which was its heart."

***

In an era in which modern medicine is dominated by doctors typing on their laptops instead of listening to and examining their patients, this book is timely, relevant, and extraordinarily insightful. Victoria Sweet's experience is not only invaluable in making the argument that doctors should return to the traditional practice of medicine; she argues that medicine is just as much an art as it is a science. Over the past several years, this art -- the intangible, qualitative components of good medicine -- has been lost. Dr. Sweet's book reminds us all that we must fight to get it back.

'Slow Medicine' is a beautifully written, thoughtfully developed memoir in which Victoria Sweet reflects on decades of experience to identify a problem that is now endemic to modern medicine: Doctors don't listen. They don't lay hands on their patients. They treat lab work and not people. And they don't assess the whole picture -- family history, genetic predispositions, environmental factors -- that may contribute to a patient's sickness. "What Father had gotten was not medicine, but health care: medicine without a soul," she writes. "What do I mean by 'soul?' I mean what he did not get: presence, attention, judgment, kindness. Above all, responsibility. No one took responsibility for the story. The essence of medicine is story. Finding the right story, understanding the true story, being unsatisfied with a story that does not make sense. Health care, on the other hand, deconstructs story into thousands of tiny pieces, pages of boxes and checkmarks for which no one is responsible. A robot doctor could've cared for my father just as well."

In neglecting some of the most fundamental elements of medicine in favor of practicing "health care," today's doctors overlook some of the most basic factors affecting a patient's illness. Sweet points out that while 17.5 percent of America's GDP is spent on health, sickness, and disease, modern medicine isn't actually providing more efficacious care. She tells the story of a 12-year old girl, Marcela, whose benign kidney tumor took many days, multiple doctors, and numerous lab tests to diagnose. But her actual diagnosis -- a terrible one, indeed -- was neurofibromatosis ("Elephant Man's Disease"), which the hospital team learned as soon as they saw it on her mother's face. Sweet writes, "This is the pitfall of fast medicine. That one look at an actual person should've sufficed for an actual diagnosis tickled my sense of irony, but it was also a warning: don't miss the obvious. The best doctor was the best diagnostician."

Sweet not only cites these memorable examples; she reflects on what she has learned from them. "I got one more insight from Marcela: there is a whole piece of my patient I'll never know," she writes. "Surrounding each is a kind of clearing, inside of which is invisible -- all these experiences, genetics, environment, their whole life, their families' lives, passed down and through them, appearing on their mother's face, though not visible on their own, but autosomal nonetheless. My biggest strength would be to recognize that whatever I saw was only a part. So whenever something didn't make sense, didn't fit, that was important. Because somehow, with one more piece of data, it would make sense."

She tells the story of 3-year of Joey, who drove his tricycle into a pool and was in the ICU for three months, unable to be removed from the ventilator because of the scar tissue covering his lungs. The doctors recommended a DNR, giving up on the idea that he could be saved. When another doctor intervened -- realizing that the ventilator simply needed less pressure -- Joey miraculously survived. "By Christmas, Joey was riding his tricycle and was interviewed by the local paper." Sweet writes, "Joey was the moment I became convinced that modern medicine, technological medicine, fast medicine, was amazing, but it wasn't always enough -- that despite its power, it wasn't always right. Joey hinted that there was more to healing than technology. Medicine almost failed him, not in spite of, but because of its own rationality."

We learn about 72-year old Ed Schumer, who came to her with complaints of chest pain. His vitals were all normal, his EKG was normal, his lungs sounded fine, and the chest pain didn't get worse when he lay down or took a deep breath. After the ER erroneously sent him him with a bronchitis diagnosis, Dr. Sweet saw him the next day, only to discover a 5-inch pulsating mass across his abdomen that had not been there the day before. Her alarming discovery of an abdominal aneurism forced her to send him back to the ER. But they sent him home -- again -- with antibiotics for the treatment of bronchitis. It took another physician to go to Mr. Schumer's house and drive him to the county hospital before his aneurism exploded and he was rushed into emergency surgery to remove it. "It wasn't enough to diagnose a disease and prescribe the right treatment. That was just being a good doctor. Or even to walk with the patient to the ER. That was just being a better doctor. Cathy showed me that the best doctor gets the patient the right treatment by force if necessary."

Sweet goes on to write about many other memorable cases -- of Nurse David, who had AIDS but was misdiagnosed with pneumonia; of Mrs. Mathers, whose sky-high ammonia levels were indicative of liver failure but she still wasn't yellow; and of Mr. Nicks, for whom she was confident Narcan would work even though he likely hadn't had an overdose and it wasn't part of the Code Blue protocol. These experiences all taught her the importance of slow medicine.

"For me, slow medicine meant and means a way of understanding the medicine I've seen, learned, and grown to love," she writes. "It signifies a way -- a way of seeing, doing, and being. It is a way of seeing, stepping back and seeing a patient in the context of his environment, and asking, 'What is in the way of the patient's own healing?' And then removing what's in the way. It is a way of doing, which is slow, methodical, and step by step. And it is a way of being -- that does not reject seeing the patient as a machine and being a good mechanic ... nor does it reject the tools of the fantastic medical progress I have witnessed. Rather, it is a way that incorporates slow and fast medicine that sees these two ways as tools ... it is a solid way, built on excellence, method, knowledge, and experience -- but also on the personal, the individual."

I love this book and recommend it to anyone who cares about the future of American medicine. It is a reminder that the efficacy of modern medicine is dependent on a physician's willingness to listen, examine, ask the right questions, and continue to seek answers when something doesn't make sense. It's time to restore heart to the practice of medicine. 4.5 stars for this insightful and informative memoir. ...more
4

Oct 14, 2017

I was a Goodreads winner of this book. I have been a healthcare advocate for over 20 years now and I like the author's views on medicine and health which I share, just take the time to know your patients and treat them like human beings. I see the same issues and problems in healthcare too. There is never enough staff for the people who are doing the hands-on care but there is always room for more and more administrative people, somehow those people always get their money and the jobs while we I was a Goodreads winner of this book. I have been a healthcare advocate for over 20 years now and I like the author's views on medicine and health which I share, just take the time to know your patients and treat them like human beings. I see the same issues and problems in healthcare too. There is never enough staff for the people who are doing the hands-on care but there is always room for more and more administrative people, somehow those people always get their money and the jobs while we take the cutbacks. A very informative and interesting book with lots of case studies throughout the author's life in the healthcare industry. This book is a worthwhile read. ...more
4

Jun 29, 2019

This book is like a memoir of how the author got to the point of writing "God's Hotel." Given that, and its focus on medical education (a few decades ago) I think this has a narrower audience. Nevertheless, the prose is still beautiful and the insights important. Slow Medicine vs. Fast Medicine is not either/or, but overall we have thrown the Slow baby out with the bath water and so balance requires emphasizing the Slow. Unfortunately, as she illustrates with her anecdotes of the present, that This book is like a memoir of how the author got to the point of writing "God's Hotel." Given that, and its focus on medical education (a few decades ago) I think this has a narrower audience. Nevertheless, the prose is still beautiful and the insights important. Slow Medicine vs. Fast Medicine is not either/or, but overall we have thrown the Slow baby out with the bath water and so balance requires emphasizing the Slow. Unfortunately, as she illustrates with her anecdotes of the present, that seems harder than ever to implement. I agree with her that we need a Slow Medicine Movement, and I hope the next book can talk about its preliminary successes. ...more
4

Nov 06, 2017

Brilliant and subversive. A memoir that also shows how medicine was, what it has become, and what it might be...
3

Feb 25, 2018

I loved her previous book, God's Hotel, exploring the care of the most vulnerable in a dying breed of hospital. Intelligent, erudite, insightful, and deeply humane, Sweet tells a slightly more personal story this time, how she came to medicine, how she learned it, and the serious moral, intellectual, ethical and spiritual question her career path led her to investigate. I will confess, my heart sank when she revealed her profound admiration for Carl Jung, the Nazi-sympathizing, dishonest, I loved her previous book, God's Hotel, exploring the care of the most vulnerable in a dying breed of hospital. Intelligent, erudite, insightful, and deeply humane, Sweet tells a slightly more personal story this time, how she came to medicine, how she learned it, and the serious moral, intellectual, ethical and spiritual question her career path led her to investigate. I will confess, my heart sank when she revealed her profound admiration for Carl Jung, the Nazi-sympathizing, dishonest, creative and utterly flaky developer of the pernicious personality theories that have tainted Human Resource Departments everywhere with the likes of Myers-Briggs and its bastard offspring "Total Insights," dumbed down to the point where you don't even get to use words for the types, only colors. But I digress.

I still liked this book a lot. She opens with the harrowing and unconscionable mistreatment of her elderly father, subjected by the hospital to days of inappropriate and even dangerous treatments for a condition he did not have, that his attending-physician-of-the-day knew he did not have, and yet was unable to change the diagnosis in that new Bible of medicine, the electronic medical record. Only by pretending his family was removing him for hospice care (God love the hospice folks, who supported them) were they able to get him out of there, feed him and allow him to recover. Sweet muses on the intersection of, conflict between, and potential synergy of "fast" (high-tech, multiple-labs, treat-every-single-thing-that-shows-up-no-matter-what) medicine, and a "slow" medicine, led by relationships, caution, setting priorities, and looking at the patient as a complex living organism in their own unique environmental "niche." She considers and applies elements of other models of medicine: Chinese traditional, Ayurvedic, and that of the medieval nun Hildegard of Bingen, to add value and alternatives to the mechanistic clinical basis of modern medicine. She ponders on what being a doctor does to a person, what sort of doctor she herself has become, and how she got there. And - most worryingly - her picture of the future of American medicine is a bleak one indeed: corporate, money-focused, treatment decisions being made by "quality managers" and other "Upstairs" types who write themselves 15% raises while refusing a raise above minimum wage for the medical assistants downstairs for years on end.

If there were more Victoria Sweets, I would be less fearful. Her portraits of patients are humane, dignified, and warm, and she seems truly grateful to them for all she has learned from them. Ironically, staff at the hospital who treated her father so badly had read her earlier book in their book club; she had presented to them at the invitation of the medical staff. Apparently, not much of what she said made it into a checkbox on the EMR, and languished unheeded. A cautionary tale. ...more
3

Dec 17, 2017

I so appreciated Sweet's first book, "God's Hotel," and was really looking forward to "Slow Medicine." While I didn't know it, I think I was looking for answers, for a way to incorporate real and tangible plans using the sensibilities of slow medicine.

This is a good book about a good doctor (and I wish she were mine!) but it's more memoir than action plan.
4

Mar 17, 2018

I liked this book almost as much as Sweet's absolutely wonderful "God's Hotel". She covers some of the same ground here, again weaving her amazing life experiences, as a clearly brilliant physician, with her thoughts on where medicine has been and where it must go. Her books should be required reading for everyone in health care- perhaps particularly administrators.
4

Nov 10, 2017

While this book turned out to be more autobiographical than I anticipated, Dr. Sweet's storytelling kept me turning the pages. Like other professions, medicine has been captured by the tyranny of metrics, making what is easily measured important. Her book is an important lesson in taking a step back and realizing that modern management with all its measurement tools is not omnipotent.
4

Dec 28, 2018

I do love reading Victoria Sweet; her style is gentle and direct. Every one of the stories of how Sweet became the doctor she is was insightful, humble, and amazing. Yet the book overall seemed mostly a rehashing of what she had already said in _God's Hotel_.

She does have perceptive and insightful things to say, as always, about the doctor-patient relationship. Of an older Austrian woman, tough, who insists on making a difficult trip to the clinic for a minor scrape to her knee: "Why did you I do love reading Victoria Sweet; her style is gentle and direct. Every one of the stories of how Sweet became the doctor she is was insightful, humble, and amazing. Yet the book overall seemed mostly a rehashing of what she had already said in _God's Hotel_.

She does have perceptive and insightful things to say, as always, about the doctor-patient relationship. Of an older Austrian woman, tough, who insists on making a difficult trip to the clinic for a minor scrape to her knee: "Why did you come in?"

"I knew it would feel better if you touched it."
"Does it?"
"Yes, it does. It's fine. Thank you."
"But as I went about the rest of the day, Hedda stayed in my mind. she was strong, she was tough, and she was nobody's fool. She was proud of her strength and her toughness, and yet she had made the trip just so I would touch her knee. It would feel better if I did, and it did feel better.

"What was that about?

"I remembered Dr. Fong and his 'Victoria, these hands!' and Mr. Danska and those dozen roses. I thought about the strange deep relationship between doctor and patient. Of what I got from my patients, of what they got from me. That was not ever talked about, neither its diagnostic usefulness nor its therapeutic meaningfulness. And yet it was as if underneath the modern model of the body I had been taught there was something, some other kind of body, with a less defined boundary, a body in which we all participate, a body of energies and connections, of invisible causes with visible effects" (222).

...more
5

Dec 03, 2017

"Slow Medicine" is the best non-fiction book I've read in many years. It's also one of the first books I haven't rushed to finish in the final chapters; instead, I savored every page, expecting Dr. Sweet's next transition to lead down another fascinating path of her particular journey through medical school, internships and residencies with a variety of populations and within diverse cultural settings. Her interest and eventual disinterest in psychiatry, then her move toward studying Hildegard, "Slow Medicine" is the best non-fiction book I've read in many years. It's also one of the first books I haven't rushed to finish in the final chapters; instead, I savored every page, expecting Dr. Sweet's next transition to lead down another fascinating path of her particular journey through medical school, internships and residencies with a variety of populations and within diverse cultural settings. Her interest and eventual disinterest in psychiatry, then her move toward studying Hildegard, then teaching--all this while spanning a 20 year medical career--inspired and moved me in so many ways. The explanation of Jungian psychology near the beginning of the book was the first evidence of her great teaching skill: the ability to translate and demystify reams of works and even criticism of those works by Freud into simple, unfettered language that I could apply to myself and my world. Another great feature of this book is that it allows the reader to understand, if not grasp the last 25 years of transition from medicine to "healthcare." I can't think of a person, population, or discipline that would not greatly benefit from reading this book. I will read all that she writes and has written! ...more
5

Jan 25, 2018

This is the fascinating history of the author's journey as a physician and the development of her ideas about how taking one's time can be far superior to the computer-driven Fast Medicine approach that is so common today.
4

Mar 04, 2019



For me, perhaps the most perceptive moment of Dr. Victoria Sweet’s “Slow Medicine” was her definition of fast and slow and how the words, normally applied to food, relate to medicine. I finally got the drift of her book when I understood her adept transference of the terms. Fast, she states, implies modernity, excitement, and efficiency as opposed to slow --- behind the times, lumbering, and inefficient. At first glance, slow seems to be something undesirable.

But years of rush and pressure, of

For me, perhaps the most perceptive moment of Dr. Victoria Sweet’s “Slow Medicine” was her definition of fast and slow and how the words, normally applied to food, relate to medicine. I finally got the drift of her book when I understood her adept transference of the terms. Fast, she states, implies modernity, excitement, and efficiency as opposed to slow --- behind the times, lumbering, and inefficient. At first glance, slow seems to be something undesirable.

But years of rush and pressure, of wrong diagnoses, and wrong treatments, have promoted slow as a kind of antidote. Dr. Sweet has determined that correct diagnoses and treatment are the truly effective, efficient, sustainable, and humane ways of healing. Neither fast nor slow correctly defines the final product. But applied together, they are powerful methods of ensuring quality care.

Her enlightening book is filled with case histories about physicians and their care of patients. Her prose is simple and direct. Her warmth and intelligence envelop the reader from the first pages. Her simple message is that medicine should be shaped by calling rather than by economics and by veneration instead of litigation.

Dr. Sweet is a prize-winning historian with a Ph.D. along with her sterling reputation as a medical doctor. Sometimes referred to as subversive and evangelistic, she is dedicated to having fast and slow medicine meld together into a more intelligent and humane system of healing. She strikes me as being the type of physician we all long for but soon find to be elusive.


...more
5

Nov 29, 2018

A very interesting memoir of a career in Medicine. Victoria Sweet was always looking for a path that kept her focused on the patient, their environment, and the strength of the body to heal itself. Along the way, she used traditional modern medicine, various homeopathic approaches, and the teachings of Hildegard of Bingen. Fascinating!
4

Aug 14, 2019

Wonderfully written. Just like Extreme Measures, Being Mortal and When Breath Becomes Air, there were plenty of “amen” moments. It reads a lot like a memoir, and her life stories in old-school medicine were really interesting. But I feel like I still want more particulars and details about how it’s even possible to practice Slow Medicine in a world where medicine has become healthcare. Seems impossible in America. And it clearly was for her—she just stopped practicing.
5

Mar 06, 2018

Fabulous book! Wow, Vicoria Sweet has lead a very eventful life in the world of medicine. I found it interesting that she orginally wanted to be Jungian psyschologist. It wasn't until after medical school that she would finally decide that she liked be a medical doctor. It shows that people take many different life paths to get to their "thing".

The book is incredibly well written and filled with short stories of her with her patients, doctors, and teachers. These real life moments with her Fabulous book! Wow, Vicoria Sweet has lead a very eventful life in the world of medicine. I found it interesting that she orginally wanted to be Jungian psyschologist. It wasn't until after medical school that she would finally decide that she liked be a medical doctor. It shows that people take many different life paths to get to their "thing".

The book is incredibly well written and filled with short stories of her with her patients, doctors, and teachers. These real life moments with her patients brings her message to life. The message is how to bring the way of Slow, the way of compassion and observation and noticing back into the health care "system" which has deviated so far into the realm of technology and structured protocl. Sweet creates a new paradigm that honors what Western medicine has learn and taught through deconstructing the body and adopting a doctor as the mechanic mindset, while finding her way back to traditional roots of the doctor as a gardner - allowing the patient to grow and healing on their own add a touch of this and a dash of that - filled with love.

She also briefly gets into the gender dynamics of what it has meant and still means to be a female doctor. A profession once off limits to women and still with its handicaps. Dr. Sweet earns her reputation as a well credentialed doctor.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is the Allied Health field. This integration of west and east is where health care is going and needs to go. Far too often the is a rejection of Western medicine from holistic practioners and a superiority coming from Western doctors. Dialogue and meaningful interaction and acceptance of the strengths and weakness of all sides of the conservation are vital to the improvement of the system overall, which is to stay to the life, health and well-being of our society. ...more
4

Sep 23, 2019

In the midst of the proliferation of healthcare, healthcare oriented policies, and standardization, this book suggests a new method of combining the already existing kinds of practicing medicine-Fast and "Slow" in order to deliver "healing" to patients. Through examples derived from her career as both a Physician and an Historian, Dr. S builds a case for Slow that begins with an event that is personal to her-her father's admission for possible stroke following seizures-and ending with a sort of In the midst of the proliferation of healthcare, healthcare oriented policies, and standardization, this book suggests a new method of combining the already existing kinds of practicing medicine-Fast and "Slow" in order to deliver "healing" to patients. Through examples derived from her career as both a Physician and an Historian, Dr. S builds a case for Slow that begins with an event that is personal to her-her father's admission for possible stroke following seizures-and ending with a sort of manifesto for what Slow is and what its place is in medicine. I loved reading this book because it was very concise. The writing was excellent, and made for an easy read. The issues addressed were poignant-evolution of medicine, the economics of healthcare, the advantages of scientific method, the validity of scientific method, the empathy principles and their being potentially overlooked by believing too much in the Fast approach-and served to enlighten the reader on just how much goes on when one or one's family, friends get sick, and how to be potentially aware of those things when seeking healthcare and treatment.

Interestingly, some of the concerns that she voiced, are similar to those raised by some notable members of previous generation of physician, for example, Dr. Henry Marsh, who in his book "Admissions" advocated for a thorough review of the changing of the tides which influenced the way he had to practice medicine and cater to his patients, in a way that increased the speed, and catapulted the patients into the system and carried them through it in the manner of a conveyor belt.
In addition, there are some concepts with regards to when to treat, that have been alluded to by Dr. Atul Gawande. This book covered those, in a new context, and in a way that can capture the reader's attention from the moment that they pick up the book to the moment that they close it. ...more
3

Oct 15, 2019

This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Things picked up and she got to the heart of everything about 30 pages from the end when she started talking about Laguna Honda (clearly her bread and butter).

I felt like her initial examples of slow vs fast medicine were sometimes problematic and it was unclear to me what her true definition of fast vs. slow medicine even was.

This is a very specific critique, but as a nurse, I found her occasional reflections on nursing/nurses she’s worked with to be quite condescending, overly simplistic and Things picked up and she got to the heart of everything about 30 pages from the end when she started talking about Laguna Honda (clearly her bread and butter).

I felt like her initial examples of slow vs fast medicine were sometimes problematic and it was unclear to me what her true definition of fast vs. slow medicine even was.

This is a very specific critique, but as a nurse, I found her occasional reflections on nursing/nurses she’s worked with to be quite condescending, overly simplistic and a bit out of touch. For example, why couldn’t the ICU nurses ever grasp the carotid massage technique that she seemed to be some sort of mystic master of? This 6th sense “je ne sais quoi” power she apparently possesses, which she seems to be using as an example of “slow medicine at its best”, evades nursing in her story over and over. Therefore, the ICU nurses must represent fast medicine (as the feeding tube fanatic nurse Blake does later on in the story). I world argue that nurses are often the masters of the slow medicine ideology and are frequently in the slow healing/ palliative care camp since we witness the suffering that feeding tubes, restraints, shocks, etc. prolong. I just rolled my eyes several times when she spoke of this patient connection element she had that seemed to set her apart from the rest.

...I am impressed with her resume though. ...more
4

Jan 24, 2018

Victoria Sweet is a doctor who after decades in medicine has written about her reflections on the sort of medicine she has practiced over the years. With more knowledge, more diagnostic tests available and more medications to prescribe, clinicians are often limited to spending 15 minutes to sort out their patients ails. Instead Dr Sweet looks at the time when slow medicine is able to assist patients, to help them heal and get better.

As well as sharing her own story, she starts the story by Victoria Sweet is a doctor who after decades in medicine has written about her reflections on the sort of medicine she has practiced over the years. With more knowledge, more diagnostic tests available and more medications to prescribe, clinicians are often limited to spending 15 minutes to sort out their patients ails. Instead Dr Sweet looks at the time when slow medicine is able to assist patients, to help them heal and get better.

As well as sharing her own story, she starts the story by talking about her father and the treatment he received as a result of 'fast medicine'. The book then is full of her own experiences with many of the patients she has looked after over the years. I could have carried on reading her stories - so I have now got out her first book to read (it is not necessary to read it first).

It is such an important topic for those in the health field. As managers put more pressure on - constantly pressuring us to do more and more with less and less - I think that the effect on the patients is left behind when it should be more of a priority. ...more
5

Jan 04, 2019

Victoria Sweet's career might have been defined by the usual medical doctor career, but she took it off the tracks. Not once, but several times, and those diversions made her a different kind of doctor. I loved her courage in listening to the discrepancies her experience exposed and in pursuing the answers to those discrepancies.

She speaks of models: the modern medical model of he body as machine; the medieval model of the body as plant. Neither one is sufficient for treating sick people.
She Victoria Sweet's career might have been defined by the usual medical doctor career, but she took it off the tracks. Not once, but several times, and those diversions made her a different kind of doctor. I loved her courage in listening to the discrepancies her experience exposed and in pursuing the answers to those discrepancies.

She speaks of models: the modern medical model of he body as machine; the medieval model of the body as plant. Neither one is sufficient for treating sick people.
She is influenced by Jung, by Hildegard of Bingen, and by the many patients and doctors in her life. So, along the way, the reader remembers, or at least I did, the sick people and doctors we know and
and how they have affected us. And along with Sweet, we make judgments about all these matters.
It's a lively read, full of interesting people and situations.
I especially liked her ending, where she sees--not opposing forces, but Slow Medicine and Fast Medicine containing one another in a Wholeness. ...more
3

Dec 04, 2017

Though when I purchased the book I was looking for more of a critique on the health industry and found this to be more memoir style - I really enjoyed stepping into the life and path of a doctor. The stories were well told and it was fun to listen to her tell it in her own voice (audiobooked this one). I listened to it right before bed and it was very effective in taking me out of my own life and into her shoes. She sounded like a very smart and dedicated and caring physician. I liked her Though when I purchased the book I was looking for more of a critique on the health industry and found this to be more memoir style - I really enjoyed stepping into the life and path of a doctor. The stories were well told and it was fun to listen to her tell it in her own voice (audiobooked this one). I listened to it right before bed and it was very effective in taking me out of my own life and into her shoes. She sounded like a very smart and dedicated and caring physician. I liked her parallels between the slow food movement and different approaches of medicine, clearly outlining her influences and realizations. The closing bit about how slow medicine IS fast medicine IS slow medicine, each containing parts of each other and complementing one another was fantastic. It's rare to find a western medicine practitioner who is open to other medicine, appreciated that. ...more
5

Mar 21, 2018

Victoria Sweet has written a beautiful and unique book addressing the present health care "system" in the United States. She is a story teller in the best sense. She tells her journey through medicine, beginning with her youth, medical school, residency, fellow and on and on in various jobs. As she works, cares and is a healer, every chapter brings a stunning glimpse behind the scenes of medicine.
She has learned and lived medicine over the course of her remarkable career. She helped me have Victoria Sweet has written a beautiful and unique book addressing the present health care "system" in the United States. She is a story teller in the best sense. She tells her journey through medicine, beginning with her youth, medical school, residency, fellow and on and on in various jobs. As she works, cares and is a healer, every chapter brings a stunning glimpse behind the scenes of medicine.
She has learned and lived medicine over the course of her remarkable career. She helped me have hope that just perhaps fast medicine and slow medicine will eventually be intertwined to bring the best care
to the sick and unhealthy. Having been a very small part of the Integrative Medicine program in Tucson, AZ I think I have a feel for what she is claiming.
I can't wait to read her other book, God's Hotel. And probably read again Slow Medicine. ...more
5

Sep 14, 2018

I had the pleasure of hearing Dr. Sweet speak at our local library, and she is just as warm and wise in person as she comes across in her entertaining and insightful book. I loved her first book, "God's Hotel," and this follow-up is just as intelligent and empathetic . This is a book I want to give to my primary care physician and every other doctor I know. She recommends taking control of medicine away from the marketers and the statisticians and the business managers and returning it to I had the pleasure of hearing Dr. Sweet speak at our local library, and she is just as warm and wise in person as she comes across in her entertaining and insightful book. I loved her first book, "God's Hotel," and this follow-up is just as intelligent and empathetic . This is a book I want to give to my primary care physician and every other doctor I know. She recommends taking control of medicine away from the marketers and the statisticians and the business managers and returning it to healers who put their hands on their patients and look them in the eye. A doctor herself, she knows what her colleagues have been up against as the practice of medicine has changed over the past 30 years into something cold and corporate. She's not anti-science by any means, but her mind is open and her approach is meticulous. If only she were in my network. ...more
5

Dec 15, 2017

Wish all doctors were like Dr. Sweet. In the era of electronic medical records, managed care and pharmacy benefits managers, healthcare is more big business than the craft of healing. Our healthcare system in the U.S. is so fractured, broken and focused on the bottom line , who are we even attracting anymore to the field of medicine? Probably not the old school healer like Dr. Sweet, but more the young intellectual with an expectation that specialists in the allopathic medical field are in the Wish all doctors were like Dr. Sweet. In the era of electronic medical records, managed care and pharmacy benefits managers, healthcare is more big business than the craft of healing. Our healthcare system in the U.S. is so fractured, broken and focused on the bottom line , who are we even attracting anymore to the field of medicine? Probably not the old school healer like Dr. Sweet, but more the young intellectual with an expectation that specialists in the allopathic medical field are in the top 1% of income earners on this country.

The more we intellectualize and commercialize medicine, the farther away we get from spiritual healing.

Dr.Sweet's life's work and heartfelt narrative give hope that there are still healers among us. ...more
4

Oct 07, 2019

Listened to the audiobook. Victoria Sweet also reads this book and I like her voice. I had just listened to God's Hotel and really enjoyed it. I decided to continue listening to Victoria Sweet's stories. The Slow Medicine themes were some of my favorite stories in God's Hotel. However the book Slow Medicine was more of a memoir following the trajectory of Sweet's career, how she started in medical school, what she did before Laguna Honda (hospital featured in God's Hotel), etc. I would have Listened to the audiobook. Victoria Sweet also reads this book and I like her voice. I had just listened to God's Hotel and really enjoyed it. I decided to continue listening to Victoria Sweet's stories. The Slow Medicine themes were some of my favorite stories in God's Hotel. However the book Slow Medicine was more of a memoir following the trajectory of Sweet's career, how she started in medical school, what she did before Laguna Honda (hospital featured in God's Hotel), etc. I would have liked a deeper dive into the Slow Medicine found in other ancient medical traditions, they are briefly mentioned and featured in one story, but I wanted to know more beyond Hildegard of Bingen. ...more
4

Feb 21, 2018

I loved the author's first book -God's Hotel: A Doctor, a Hospital, and a Pilgrimage to the Heart of Medicine. In Slow Medicine she develops her philosophy of medicine in more detail, and it includes modern techniques and drugs as well as older and proven ways of doing things. Modern medicine seems to increasingly rely on computer models and there is less time for doctors to examine patients and spend time with them. Health care has often become a commodity instead of a process of healing. I I loved the author's first book -God's Hotel: A Doctor, a Hospital, and a Pilgrimage to the Heart of Medicine. In Slow Medicine she develops her philosophy of medicine in more detail, and it includes modern techniques and drugs as well as older and proven ways of doing things. Modern medicine seems to increasingly rely on computer models and there is less time for doctors to examine patients and spend time with them. Health care has often become a commodity instead of a process of healing. I appreciated the discussions on the philosophies of medicine, but most all I learned a lot from the stories Dr. Sweet tells about her patients. Recommended for anyone interested in health care. ...more

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