In this first episode we are introduced to the hectic pace of St. Eligius and the toll it can take on some of it's principle characters. Life and death decisions must be made quickly and this doesn't leave room for professional courtesies or emotions which explode in unexpected directions at unexpected times. This pilot is a great primer on the characters and atmosphere one can expect at St. Eligius, better known as St. Elsewhere by those who can or can't afford to go somewhere else.
Dr. Cavanero tells a couple that their newborn baby will have Down's Syndrome. Dr. Beale tries to get inside the head of the bomber. Dr. Westphall shows members of the boards around the hospital. Fiscus gets trapped in the elevator with Cathy Martin.
Samuel befriends a young patient who must undergo an operation on his ankle. Chandler questions the competence of an older nurse. Cavanero must help a youth deliver a baby over the phone. Craig accepts the award for "Surgeon of the Year." Wayne celebrates his one-month anniversary with Cathy.
When several patients die with symptoms of Legionnaires' disease, Dr. Westphall considers shutting down a ward. Cavanero clashes with a disrespectful nurse. White continues to struggle with his job, marriage, and finances.
After evacuating a hospital ward, rumors abound that Dr. Westphall's job may be in jeopardy. Fiscus gets mugged in the emergency room. Cavanero begins seeing a fisherman who helped her deliver a baby. Beale believes that one of his patients may been impregnated by someone in the hospital.
Beale informs a former psychiatric patient that she can go home but is against releasing her boyfriend who thinks he is a bird. Samuels continues with a practical joke on Craig. After being previously attacked, Fiscus decides to carry a gun in the emergency room.
Fiscus has an emergency room encounter with a gang member. Ehrlich gets in hot water with Craig after he injures his finger playing handball. White's daughter ends up in the emergency room after swallowing mothballs. Morrison goes out on a house call for a guy who then pesters him to keep making house calls for his neighbors.
Ralph goes around the hospital impersonating a doctor. Ehrlich passes out while assisting with surgery. White separates from his wife and moves in with the Morrisons. An overweight woman is surprised to learn she is pregnant. A new doctor is Samuel's former flame.
Samuels has trouble concentrating on his work after being rejected by Dr. Paxton. Ralph escapes from his room again. Morrison is stunned when his near-death patient recovers after his parents perform Chinese rituals on him.
Craig runs into one of his college friends only to find out that he is at the hospital for a sex change. White must ask a family to sign for an autopsy. Samuels and Paxton disagree on how to treat a patient with alcoholism. Chandler tries to help a patient regain his memory.
Craig still struggles to accept his college friend's decision to undergo a sex change operation. Armstrong treats a patient with chronic nose bleeds. Chandler's amnesia patient meets with his parents. White tries to reconcile with his wife.
After nearly collapsing, Auschlander must decide whether to go on chemotherapy. Fiscus looks for someone to stay with after he gets evicted. Chandler and Morrison treat a patient who was beaten in a racially-motivated gang fight.
Ehrlich scrambles to find a last-minute date to Craig's party. Morrison finds out that one of his patient's injury were not from a racially-motivated scuffle as he initially claimed. White's wife asks him for money to get an abortion.
Fiscus and Ehrlich have a falling out. Cavanero and Samuels go out of their way to prevent a famous porn star from being served a summons at the hospital. Armstrong feels that a well-respected surgeon is needlessly installing pacemakers in patients but gets little support from Craig.
Westphall treats a cancer patient whose brother wants him to die without prolonged suffering. After a disastrous first date, Ehrlich tries to get a second date with Daniels and make things better. Rosenthal must deal with a personal crisis.
Craig becomes much nicer to everyone when an attractive surgeon comes to the hospital. Morrison has to deal with a liver patient who would rather drink himself to death. Chandler gets sued after one of his patients dies in the elevator. White's life continues to spiral downward.
Craig continues to be mesmerized by an attractive visiting doctor. Chandler gets stressed out over an impending wrongful death lawsuit. Morrison unsuccessfully tries to get through to White. A sick Samuels is comforted by Cavanero.
Ehrlich and Morrison disagree on how to treat a patient. Daniels is threatened by an unstable patient and by the fact that Cathy Martin may still have feelings for Fiscus. Westphall reluctantly asks Craig to give a lecture to inner city kids.
Morrison awaits the birth of his first child. Auschlander and a friend get into a scuffle with a reckless driver. White is accused of stealing drugs from the hospital. Fiscus is put to the test by Cathy Martin. Craig's son, also a doctor, turns out to be a pothead.