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This chapter juxtaposes the common experience of physicians, bilingual nurses, and vernacular healers in their failed efforts to diagnose and treat patients with the strange disease. A newly graduated physician working in a rural clinic related his frustration after not receiving support from public health officials or any feedback from specialists who treated his dying patients. Interns in their final semester of medical school challenged regional public health authorities for a perceived failure to address the situation. Nurses recounted their efforts to mediate between Spanish-speaking doctors, indigenous patients, and healers and the emotional distress of losing patients, some of whom...

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