One of my favorite things to do after a long, hard day’s work (aside from immediately changing into my yoga pants) is clicking on Netflix and settling in the couch for a nice, long binge! Some days, it’s all I can think about doing. While I love a good series, I also enjoy mixing things up a little with an interesting and thought provoking documentary, especially those that relate to healthcare. With endless options, some nights I spend my whole evening sifting through for my next binge-worthy pick and end up falling asleep before settling on a choice…you know the feeling!
If you could use some mid-week binge watching, here are eight healthcare related Netflix picks for nurse practitioners to check out tonight.
1. Call the Midwife
Call the Midwife is based on a memoir by Jennifer Worth about her experience as a nurse and midwife in the East End of London during the post World War II era of the 1950s and early 1960s. The cast is marvelous in their ability to engage the audience in real-life stories that tug at your heartstrings. The show, which is in its 5th season, is a hit with lovers of Downton Abbey’s Britishness and Mad Men’s vintage styles.
2. House, M.D.
A critically acclaimed series and winner of numerous awards, the medical drama centers around Dr. Gregory House; an arrogant, antisocial, pain killer addict who is an unconventional infectious disease specialist. While Dr. House loathes his patients and isn’t afraid to show it with poor bedside manner, he is a genius at treating mysterious ailments; adding a cynical twist to the world of primetime medical dramas. See if you can diagnose the problem before House!
3. Nurse Jackie
In a relatable struggle to find work/life balance, Edie Falco plays a drug-addicted ER nurse stumbling to keep up with the demands of her job while facing a mountain of personal problems. Aside from Nurse Jackie’s drug addiction, the show is undoubtedly a standout depiction of nursing with its real-life portrayals of RNs and their roles within the hospital setting.
4. Alive Inside: A Story of Music and Memory
An inspiring and moving documentary, Alive Inside follows social worker Dan Cohen, founder of the nonprofit organization Music & Memory, as he fights against a broken healthcare system by using music to unlock memory in nursing home patients afflicted with Alzheimer’s. The documentary offers insight from experts including renowned neurologist Oliver Sacks, as well as interviews with family members who have witnessed music’s miraculous effects on their loved ones. The accounts will leave you profoundly amazed with tears of joy.
5. Resistance: Not All Germs Are Created Equal
Resistance explains the fundamental reason the incorrect use of antibiotics is so dangerous not only in hospital settings, but in everyday, modern-life through interviews with well-chosen, highly articulate experts as well as ordinary individuals who have suffered at the mercy of antibiotic abuse. While the premise is straightforward, the documentary features gripping stories, experiences, and evidence; clarifying what’s at stake, what’s driving the problem and how it’s not too late to turn it around.
6. Grey’s Anatomy
Love it or hate it, the first few seasons of the show provided me some much needed R&R during nursing school. Grey’s Anatomy follows the dramatic lives of surgeons working in Seattle. Though the show is not in the least bit accurate and the fictional doctors violate many ethical and standard medical procedures, the interesting blend of soap opera meets drama meets comedy creates for a compelling series that’s hard not to get sucked into (if you can withstand the medical fallacies).
If this light and airy comedy series feels like a mirror of your real life experience as a nurse practitioner, that’s probably because it is. With storyline ideas taken from interviews with doctors who were willing to volunteer their own funny accounts to be used, Scrubs is perhaps the most relatable medical show on TV; featuring broader themes such as tensions between residents and the allure of private practice. This show is sure to make you laugh at the end of a long, hard day on your feet!
8. My Beautiful Broken Brain
A film about hope, transformation and the limitless power of the human mind, My Beautiful Broken Brain follows 34 year old Lotje Sodderland and her recovery following a massive stroke due to a rare malformation of the blood vessels in her brain; which left her isolated in her own body, unable to speak, read, write and perform even simple tasks. Watching Sodderland sort through such an alienating recovery through a combination of personally shot iPhone footage and footage by filmmaker Sophie Robinson provides for an amazingly moving look into a patient’s actual, personal account of traumatic brain injury as it’s happening.
What are your favorite healthcare related Netflix features?
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