Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

How International Fans Really Feel About New Amsterdam

NBC's soapy medical drama "New Amsterdam" runs in the same vein as TV series like "Grey's Anatomy," "ER," and "House," and it's no less popular. Inspired by true events, the series focuses on the altruistic Dr. Max Goodwin (Ryan Eggold) as he seeks to reform the declining New Amsterdam hospital, one of the nation's oldest public health facilities. Of course, the hospital isn't the only one in need of some support and inner change. With a rocky marriage behind him and uncertain parenthood ahead, Goodwin has his own personal struggles to face, as do the other main cast members as they navigate life's complex twists and turns.

However, "New Amsterdam" is not without its criticisms. Being the genre that it is, much of the show's external conflict is driven by various medical crises in the form of drug addictions, surgery complications, and even plague outbreaks (including COVID-19 itself), to name a few. But the series has been under some fire for painting a less-than-credible picture of medical care.

Notably, a uniquely negative reaction has also been expressed by international fans of the show.

New Amsterdam highlights some flaws of healthcare in the United States

Viewers outside the United States are pointing to more uncomfortable truths that are evident in the series. This take is less of a condemnation of the show itself and more of the system it exposes.

In the r/NewAmsterdamTV subreddit, u/belfrahn commented, "As a European, it is an unimaginable dystopian cautionary tale. Gives me the creeps. Dr. Goodwin has to find clever, mischievous ways to circumvent pharmaceuticals and get life-saving insulin to his patients. My god. In the rest of the industrialized world, this show couldn't exist." Instead, as u/belfrahn explained with an example of a diabetic patient, a doctor in a different county might establish a lifetime prescription for insulin for a cost of 30 Euros per month, and that would be the end of the story.

Another European user pointed out that the ideal healthcare system is tough to implement both in the United States and outside of it. "Preventive medicine and structural reforms actually save money," u/BenigDK wrote. "Sadly, it's apparently a harder lesson to learn than it looks, not just in the USA." Interestingly, this user also shared that their experiences with public healthcare show that long waiting times can cost the system significantly more money because patients get sicker while waiting.

Other users noted the stark contrast between their own countries and the United States. "In Australia, we have code and classifications for things that are universal all over so there is not confusion and price differences," u/baleinset said. If these kinds of changes were implemented in the United States, "New Amsterdam" would probably become a very different show, with an entirely different set of issues for doctors to solve.