Next up, it’s some medical contacts for Shadowrunners. After all, when you need a doctor, you tend to need one badly – and it’s always nice to know one who doesn’t ask too many inconvenient questions.
Martin E.E. “Doc” Smith (AKA; “Old Lost-In-Space”) had been peacefully semiretired until the social services went all to hell. At that point he needed some extra income. More importantly, an awful lot of people lost access to any kind of medical care beyond the public health vaccinations and clinics. He was old fashioned enough to take his hippocratic oath seriously – and that was simply WRONG. His skills might not be up to the latest gadgetry, but he wasn’t going to have it anyway. He might be a bit rusty, and it’d been a long time since his work with “Doctors Without Borders” – but Dr. Smith was back in business.
In the years since he’s become used to getting his supplies from shady street dealers, to having to play one gang off against another to keep his small clinic open, and to treating people who don’t officially exist at all. Fortunately some of the newer drugs help keep his memory reasonably keen, and the stiffness of age at bay.
The good doctor is currently 86, and going strong. Still, he graduated in 2002. He really isn’t much for cyberware installation, organ transplants, and so on. That sort of thing is a bit more specialized then the occasional update course could really cover. On the other hand, he’s VERY good at improvising and “basic” medicine.
Stephen Miller (“Bones”) is actually quite skilled. Unfortunately, he’s also an avid Trekkie with complete collections of all sixteen series and eighteen movies – ranging from the original series on through “Guardians of the Federation” and not even neglecting “The Generation After Next” (despite it’s general denouncement by most fans as a misbegotten monstrosity that should never have been aired). He’s gone so far as to have some cosmetic surgery to make him look more like “Dr McCoy” from the original series – and to emulate some of the characters mannerisms. Stephen tends to complain endlessly about the primitive conditions he’s expected to work under and sometimes gives anxious and unaware bystanders severe shocks by announcing; “He’s Dead Jim!” over patients who’re actually doing pretty well.
Unfortunately, while Stephen is a highly skilled physician and surgeon, he’s generally against gratuitous meddling with people: he’ll willingly patch you up, or even repair existing cyberware, but if you want cosmetic surgery, or to have perfectly healthy parts replaced with metal, he’s not going to have anything to do with it – although he can usually be talked into installing basic bioware implants and datajacks.
Doctor Octavius Asprenus runs his own small cyberclinc, is quite skilled as a surgeon, and is reasonably talented (if eccentric) as a cyberware designer. Unfortunately, the good doctor is more than a little shady. He is definitely willing to persuade gullible patients to try out his experimental designs for him, to install “meat puppet” systems, and to push the boundaries of medical ethics in a wide variety of ways. At least according to rumor, he is also willing to “work” on unwilling patients, to perform manipulative neurosurgery, to implant memories, to install secondhand or otherwise questionable wares, and to implant control systems if the price is right.
Personally the doctor is small, thin, and slightly oily seeming. He uses a low-grade control rig to direct a variety of assisting devices, allowing him to work without the surgical team that most cybersurgeons require.
Ithmar Bahai was a youthful intern before he goblinized, and was contacted by Bear. Today he’s one of the more important peaceful leaders of the various “Ork Rights” groups, as well as one of the best shamans and physicians in the Ork Underground. Ithmar provides runners with a variety of safehouse services, medical treatments, and even limited research services (such as chemical analysis and the creation of antidotes and vaccines), in exchange for the equipment, supplies, and money he needs to keep his clinic operating and his people healthy. In some ways, he’s the medical equivalent of a Fixer; if you’re looking for medical information, an exotic treatment, or some specialized bioware or cyberware, he’s very likely to have a good idea of where you can get it.
Personally, Ithmar is late middle aged – he appears to be aging more slowly than the usual Ork, possibly due to his healthy lifestyle or some genetic predisposition – and tends to dress in a clean lab coat, wear a stethoscope, and otherwise carefully conforms to the typical “doctors outfit”. It tends to clearly identify him in the Underground and serves to confuse the prejudiced, who find it hard to associate “doctor” with “ork”.