The Doctor's Dilemma

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Copyright: This work is in the public domain in the USA only.

First staged in 1906, "The Doctor's Dilemma" is a play that revolves around a community of doctors, most specializing, unbeknownst to them, in different types of expensive, fraudulent treatments. Dr. Ridgeon, who has actually discovered a vaccine for tuberculosis, is conflicted about administering his limited remedy, for the husband of a woman he is in love with can pay, but his kind yet poverty-stricken colleague Dr. Blenkinsop cannot. Shaw's drama highlights the medical predicament of his day, that of treating patients with unnecessary practices to earn a living. A well-written, verbose play characteristic of Shaw, "The Doctor's Dilemma" still resonates with today's audience because of its thoughtful commentary on the continuing problem of providing adequate healthcare to the poor.