How applicable would the case study "A Few Kind Words Counted More Than My Therapy" by Gene Dorio, M.D., be to the general population?

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Karen P.L. Hardison | College Teacher | eNotes Employee

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This "case study" or maybe more properly simply "article," would be profoundly applicable to the general public. While it is addressed by Doctor Dorio to his collegues, "As physicians, we have the privilege of helping to heal those who are ill," it discussions a situation similar to many anyone of us might find ourselves in: a brief encounter with someone who is struggling mightily and who may feel isolated and alone in their struggle: they may feel a breach [breach: a crack, break, or rupture (Collins Dictionary)] between themselves and the rest of humanity. It is this breach that Dorio perceived and reach over to bridge. It is this breach that any member of the general public may encounter, may feel, may perceive, may reach over on any given day in any number of myriad situations.

Another thing that tells us that this "case study" is applicable to the general populace is that Dorio himself emphasizes this applicability by providing a secondary address to "human beings:

As human beings, we are also given the ability to heal the mind and the soul.

Dorio underscores this aspect of his address, to human beings in general, by stating that the medical treatment he offered Ryan for his ear problem, though of valuable assistance, especially since an ear infection of some sort ("an oral antibiotic") was involved, was "overshadowed" by the kind words of compassion and encouragement that he had previously uttered. Dorio goes further to prove the general applicability by saying that when they now see each other at the gym, Ryan works "harder" because of Dorio's presence while Dorio also works "harder" himself because of Ryan's presence: in the gym, both Ryan and Dorio are individual human beings, a state of being that can be "camouflaged" by a "white coat" and a "stethoscope."

A white coat and stethoscope can camouflage one's appearance, so when I introduced myself, I knew that neither the caregiver nor Ryan recognized me.

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