Since the character Betty (Peyton Kennedy) was introduced last season of Grey’s Anatomy, the show has addressed the opioid epidemic — but never to the degree as demonstrated in Thursday's episode.
When a bad batch of drugs was passed around at a park in Seattle, medics bring in more than 50 patients who overdose. Betty comes in with her boyfriend. Betty reveals she took meth along with the pills being sold. She wants to get out of the hospital because she doesn’t want to put Amelia (Caterina Scorsone) through anymore pain. As she says that, she feels sharp pains in her chest.
It turns out she blew veins near her heart, which Teddy (Kim Raver) has to reconstruct during surgery. Maggie (Kelly McCreary) wants to be the one to do it, but Teddy is not sure whether Betty will make it out of the surgery alive.
“Amelia might never see that girl open her eyes again, so let me be the surgeon that breaks the news to Amelia because she’s going to need her sister,” Teddy said.
Amelia breaks down several times throughout the episode, but she seems to be fine overall. She doesn’t relapse, and we hope she never will. More good news is Betty makes it out of the surgery alive, and are there to see her wake up.
Before she wakes up though, her parents contemplate telling Betty that her boyfriend died when he snuck into a medical closet to take more drugs. Amelia, having lost her fiancé, speaks reason to the parents.
“I hope this is her bottom,” Amelia said. “I hope this is what gets her clean. I hope this is what makes her want to live.”
The episode was emotional to say the least, but it showed the harsh realities of the drug epidemic in America. It’s always good when Grey’s Anatomy chooses to do socially pertinent episodes because media can inform and bring new light to those situations.
Next week, Grey’s Anatomy will become the longest running TV medical drama, so there’s another thing to celebrate.
Here’s how fans reacted to the episode on Twitter:
Grey’s Anatomy airs Thursdays at 8 p.m. on ABC.