Multiple births often involve high-risk pregnancies, premature deliveries, and high anxiety for new parents and their families.
TV loves the drama of carrying this many babies at once, but they don’t always get key details correct.
Will The Good Doctor Season 6 Episode 7 be an exception? It’s done a better job with autism than many other series, so maybe it’ll pull this off too!
World Premature Baby Day was November 17; this episode, originally slated to air on November 21, might have been meant to coincide with it. If that’s the case, that significantly ups the chances that this series will handle the sextuplet birth and aftermath somewhat realistically.
I certainly hope so! As the proud uncle of quadruplets, I hate when multiple births are written inappropriately. There’s enough drama with these high-risk pregnancies without making things up that would never happen.
One aspect that rings true is the anxiety the parents feel when their children have to be immediately whisked off to the NICU because their underdeveloped lungs make breathing difficult.
Parents fear the worst, especially given that their babies are often born exceedingly prematurely. Modern technology makes it more likely that premature children will survive, but it depends on how early they arrive and how developed they are.
In addition, it’s difficult to tell what effects prematurity might have on the babies’ cognitive function.
This often isn’t clear until they’re older, but premature birth can cause developmental and cognitive delays. Hence, parents of premature multiples must be prepared for one or more of their children to have disabilities.
All new parents are exhausted and anxious, but these concerns are amplified when you have several babies at once and don’t know how they will fare physically or mentally! I hope The Good Doctor addresses this as well as the physical problems the children have.
According to spoilers, the hospital will put doctors on teams so that they can attend to all the babies in the NICU. Hopefully, there will be some obstetricians involved in this too!
Anyway, from the photos, it appears there are at least three teams:
Glassman is also working with the babies, and Asher needs a supervising physician — could he have the opportunity to work with the hospital’s former president?
Three teams would mean each one is responsible for two babies, which could be a big ask if they all have serious problems.
The spoiler video has at least one of the babies in danger. While the NICU is often able to save premature babies nowadays, if one or more is seriously underdeveloped, those babies might not be able to survive or live independently of life support.
This will be dramatic and heartbreaking for the parents if it happens!
What is Shaun doing during this dramatic case? He and Lea are discussing starting a family, but surely he is involved in some way with the medical case too.
Dealing with this case might be hard for Shaun and Lea, considering the miscarriage she suffered before their marriage. The miscarriage hasn’t been mentioned in a long time, but having six babies in the NICU should trigger old feelings.
If one or more of the babies dies, it will almost certainly make Lea think twice about having children. She may fear having another miscarriage and not want to go through the process of trying to get pregnant only to lose the baby again.
Shaun will likely see it from more of a scientific point of view and calculate the odds of a second miscarriage. But will this issue — and Shaun’s method of dealing with it — drive a wedge between him and Lea?
The other big question mark here is the type of publicity surrounding this case.
The media often treats multiple births as big news, so this case could put St. Bonaventure on the map!
The parents likely don’t want that type of attention, and the hospital probably doesn’t either, but reporters may find out anyway and start hounding everyone for interviews.
Shaun wasn’t comfortable with the publicity Salen’s diversity campaign brought him on The Good Doctor Season 5; it’s anyone’s guess how he — or the rest of the staff — will handle it if reporters bother them during this case.
Finally, will any of the doctors have religious or other ethical concerns that interfere with making the best decisions for these babies?
Stories involving children who have to be taken off life support are often controversial. Sometimes, the parent or a doctor will refuse to do it because of their religious beliefs.
If any of the babies seem too underdeveloped to survive, there might be an argument over whether or not the parents should let them go.
The doctors can’t withdraw life support without the parents’ consent or a court order, and Shaun might be determined to find a novel solution to save the child’s life.
All in all, this story seems like it has a lot of potential. What do you this, The Good Doctor fanatics? Hit the big, blue SHOW COMMENTS button and let us know!
Don’t forget you can watch The Good Doctor online.
The Good Doctor airs on ABC on Mondays at 10 PM EST / PST.
Jack Ori is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. His debut young adult novel, Reinventing Hannah, is available on Amazon. Follow him on Twitter.