Crisis: A Beginner’s Perspective

  • Christopher MagoonEmail author
User perspective article

“It’s not what you look at that matters, but what you see.” Henry David Thoreau

It’s well known that the best lunch near the VA hospital is a made-to-order sandwich at the corner store. While rotating there I would walk there on my lunch breaks, basking in the summery bustle of the busy downtown. In terms of energy needed to face the afternoon, the physical distance between the hospital and the sandwich shop was as valuable as the calories from the sandwich itself. I was working in a locked psychiatric unit. It was stuffy and fluorescent, and immersing in mental illness held hidden weight. As I left the unit for lunch, I felt for the patients whose lunch trays had to be buzzed in between heavy, video-monitored doors. But I left regardless; lunch was a time to recoup.

Prior to my psych rotation, I had seen the block between the VA and the sandwich shop as a gathering point of those down on their luck. Many of the city’s homeless gathered there. Over the course of my rotation, I saw...


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The author declares that there is no conflict of interest.

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No animals were involved in any way.

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© Springer Nature India Private Limited 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of MedicinePhiladelphiaUSA

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