Bellevue’s latest honor
Sure, your hospital may be on the 100 Top Hospitals: National Benchmarks list. You may be a “center of excellence.” Hell, you may even have won a Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. But Outliers knows of only one hospital that can lay claim to a Pulitzer Prize. And we confess we’re jealous of you, Bellevue Hospital Center.
How did the New York City hospital, best known as a mental hospital, earn the most coveted prize in journalism? Well first of all, it was for its literary output, not its news savvy, that Bellevue scored the honor. As readers of Outliers may remember, the hospital began hosting Bellevue Literary Press a few years back as a project of the New York University School of Medicine. The small, independent publisher brands itself as offering “Books at the intersection of the arts and science.”
One of those books is Tinkers. It’s the first novel by Paul Harding, who claimed the Pulitzer for fiction earlier this month. The Pulitzer judges called it “a powerful celebration of life in which a New England father and son, through suffering and joy, transcend their imprisoning lives and offer new ways of perceiving the world and mortality.”
As for Outliers, we still haven’t gotten a call from the Pulitzer Prize board—although we’re willing to wait. After all, country music icon Hank Williams won one this year and he’s been dead for 57 years. Although we’re not sure if there’s a category for wisecracking healthcare columns.