Traverse City Record-Eagle

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June 27, 2014

Producer directly sees impact of work

NEW YORK (AP) — Two of the nurses who treated ABC News producer Terence Wrong when he was hospitalized for a minor ailment recently told him they traced their interest in medicine directly to his work.

That’s a profound point of pride, as well as extra assurance of attentive care. Wrong has established a niche as the maker of rigorous nonfiction television series that go behind the scenes at institutions, more often than not hospitals, ever since his first series on Johns Hopkins Hospital aired in 2000.

The latest, “NY Med,” debuted Thursday. It contrasts stories from Manhattan’s New York-Presbyterian Hospital with gritty emergency room scenes from Newark, New Jersey’s University Hospital.

Five of the eight series Wrong has made for ABC were set in hospitals; his team has immersed itself in the work at more than a dozen facilities. Each series takes at least four months of filming and up to a year of postproduction, so they rarely appear in back-to-back years. They’re watched closely by many in medicine — not just Wrong’s nurses.

“We always knew that one of the reasons the hospitals are willing to exhibit their warts and blemishes as well as the great things they do is that they see this series as a recruitment tool,” Wrong said.

“NY Med” has the mix of stories that will be familiar to fans, including remarkable footage of a man suffering a life-threatening aneurysm in front of Dr. Mehmet Oz. We see patients and their families live through delicate surgeries and gunshot victims in emergency rooms. A nurse is fired for breaking her workplace’s social media rules and, in a lighthearted moment, a patient is called out for flirting with several nurses simultaneously.

As a character, Dr. Ashley Winter offers relief from the more intense stories of the first episode. A young, attractive urologist, she has to ask delicate questions of older men, as well as fend off guys seeking a date.

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