A widowed cab driver has a serious heart condition, and Kildare advises him to quit his job. But the man refuses to quit out of fear for the future of his two daughters, one of whom he is estranged from due to his disapproval of her lifestyle.
An old seaman, hospitalized for a heart attack, claims to be able to stop his heart at will through yoga, and says he will do it before the day his insurance runs out so that his money will go to his beneficiary - an old ship that hasn't left port in years. Thinking he feels useless, Kildare and the staff hope to find him another job before that date arrives, if they can get him interested.
Kildare considers transferring to research after a close friend dies of leukemia, and after meeting a 14-year-old girl who is believed to also have the disease. But Kildare is not certain of her diagnosis, putting him at odds with the efficient but seemingly impersonal researcher who is working on the girl's case.
Kildare is puzzled as to why a highly regarded doctor, whom Gillespie has recommended for a clinic appointment, is constantly referring his patients to other doctors and specialists, even when the diagnosis should be easy.
When her son needs a kidney transplant to save his life, a doctor fears that her secret will be discovered: that her husband is not the boy's father, and that the real father will have to be the donor as she has only one functional kidney.
Despite being confined to a wheelchair, Dr. Becker decides to operate on his severely burned patient Charles Shannon, but he still resists reconciling with his long-suffering wife. Conclusion of four-part story.
Kildare and Gillespie are increasingly concerned about the three trainees as well as Kildare's teaching assistant. Hartwood is making too many mistakes, and is dealing with an unsupportive wife. Warren is underconfident, and having a hard time dealing with sexism from patients and doctors. And Devereaux and teaching assistant Helvick are displaying bad attitudes.
Kildare finds that the spouses of five patients who are candidates for the new kidney dialysis treatment are having a more difficult time than the patients themselves. As is Nurse Fain, whose husband is also suffering from kidney disease but is too old for consideration.
Kildare learns that Morrison's wife has become an alcoholic, a fact he may have to report to the committee deciding who gets the treatment. Anna tells her husband she knows the truth about her condition.
A young woman is injured in a car accident in which her boyfriend is killed. Upon examination it is discovered that she is pregnant and terminally ill. The girl doesn't want her mother to know about the pregnancy, and the mother does not want her daughter to know about her prognosis. First of two parts.
Conclusion. Rachel tells Kildare that she wants to stop her treatments, even though that will mean the death of her baby as well as herself, because she thinks the baby will have no hope of a good life.
Flying all the way from Nigeria, stubborn anthropologist and author Felix Holman is admitted to Blair suffering from an undetermined pulmonary infection which is proving strangely difficult to treat. First of four parts.
Due to Holman's still delicate condition and their tendency to argue, his devoted missionary assistant is asked to not visit him until he recovers further. Meanwhile Kildare becomes concerned when he learns that a teenage hospital assistant is dating a much older doctor.