More by LAWRENCE MARTIN

In the early 1980s I wrote a story about an extremely ill patient cared for in our medical intensive care unit (MICU) at Mt. Sinai Hospital, Cleveland. Called A Case For Intensive Care, the story was for a general audience and appeared in a local college literary magazine. Until then all my published writing had been for doctors only, and I wanted to explain a complicated medical case in a way that anyone could understand. In the ensuing years I wrote many other patient-centered stories, each intended for a general audience. They are now collected in We Cant Kill Your Mother! and Other Stories of Intensive Care. This book is for the general reader - In fact the only requirement is an interest in humanity. Illness and medicine are universal and everyone has some familiarity with hospitals, if only from the position of consumer. Most people have, at some point, either been hospitalized or visited a family member in the hospital. These stories take you inside the medical intensive care unit, a major part of every acute care hospital. Thats the setting, but the subject is people and their serious (and sometimes strange) afflictions. The first chapter gives an overview of intensive care rounds and how the MICU operates. Succeeding chapters are devoted to one or two patients and the challenges they present. Like Harold Switek, too ill to leave MICU, too psychotic to stay. And Willie the Yellow Man, whose love affair with alcohol exceeded anything youve ever seen. Youll meet a young socialite hospitalized with rapid onset of total paralysis and wonder as we did will she ever hug her kids again? And another woman about to have her baby during a terrifying asthma attack. I am not the first, and will certainly not be the last, medical professional to write about his or her patients. In a literary sense doctors and nurses are privileged; what we see in our daily jobs is more than enough to fill many interesting books. Lawrence Martin, M.D. Cleveland, Ohio
In the last 35 years, governments around the globe have increasingly contracted with nonprofit and for-profit entities designed to provide a portion of the public sector’s portfolio of goods and services. This trend can be traced to a variety of factors, including perceived or actual economic efficiencies in outsourcing goods and services, values concerning the role and size of government in society, and the financial and organizational constraints of many government entities. In the United States, child welfare services adopted a pro-contracting approach early, and a variety of other human services have followed suit, including mental health care, job training, homeless services and others. Although there is strong evidence to suggest that human service contracting is growing over time, scholarship continues to lag on topics related to human service contract management, policy implementation and innovation, performance-based contracting and evaluation.

This new volume in the Public Solutions Handbook series is the first volume-length treatment of human services contracting issues, integrating both policy and practice, and exploring a broad range of issues that includes the fields of history, growth, innovations, results and outcomes, best practices and the future of government human service contracting. Chapters in this book examine specific human service contracts, both in the U.S. and abroad, geared to practitioners in the public sector—from local government service contractors to municipal employees—as well as MPA students and those enrolled in courses on intergovernmental relations and nonprofit management.

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