Medical drama fans, stop what you're doing. There's new drama in town by David Schulner called New Amsterdam, and it's set to be pretty good. Eagle eyed fans will recognise the protagonist Dr. Max Goodwin (Ryan Eggold) as 90210's English Lit teacher Ryan Matthews. In October, NBC announced that there would be an additional nine episodes in the first season, which means that the first season will have an incredible 22 episodes. Hallelujah. The good news if you're wondering how to watch New Amsterdam in the UK is that it's coming to Amazon Prime UK on February 10 so you'll be able marathon every episode.
So far, 10 episodes have aired in the U.S. and they will all be available on Primel, with each new episode available every Wednesday on the streaming site. Although it's had a pretty lukewarm reception with critics, the ratings have been good and the 22 episodes in the first season could be a suggestion of a second season to come.
The show is based on the medical memoir by Dr. Eric Manheimer, Twelve Patients: Life and Death at Bellevue Hospital, about his 15 years as the medical director of the hospital. Bellevue Hospital, located in Manhattan, New York City, was founded back in 1736 making it the oldest public hospital in the United States. There were a number of medical triumphs at this iconic hospital including opening the very first maternity ward in the United States in 1799. I mean, what would we do without it.
However, there have been some horror stories more recently at Bellevue Hospital, with Dr. Marcos noting that many people with severe mental illnesses were "falling through the cracks," the New York Times reports. There were several instances of violence among patients with mental health issues who had been released early, the newspaper reported in 1989, with Marcos suggesting there was inadequate long term care.
As in Twelve Patients, New Amsterdam follows the newly appointed medical director Dr. Max Goodwin as he attempts to restructure the management of the hospital to provide the best care for patients. The hospital, like so many, is hugely underfunded, lacks staff, and is light years away from its former days of glory. But his surname alone —good-win — should already tell you that he has come to the aid of the hospital in its time of need, just as any good saviour should.
Dr Goodwin immediately steps up to his role, making big changes to the hospital to re-shape the medical system. The intention is to restore the reputation of the hospital as somewhere that can treat Ebola patients — a true Bellevue story, the Times report — and the U.S. President under the same roof without prejudice. Showing that rich people and poor people can receive the same level of medical treatment. No spoilers, but Dr Goodwin may also become a patient of Bellevue. Also, expect big themes like racism to be woven into the narrative. And of course it wouldn't be a medical drama without at least one romance, would it. So if you're a fan of ER, or Grey's Anatomy just wait til February 10, I promise you won't regret this.