If some people are living longer against all odds, Dr. Sanjay Gupta is certain to be interested.
CNN's chief medical correspondent reportedly a strong contender for U.S. surgeon general in the Obama administration earlier this year probes cutting-edge means of survival in "Another Day: Cheating Death," a new documentary the cable news network debuts Saturday, Oct. 17. (It repeats the following night.)
Coinciding with the publication of a similarly titled book by Gupta, the program uses several cases to demonstrate how revolutionary science and doctoring can save people who might have been unable to avoid death otherwise.
"It's pretty involved," Gupta says of coordinating a special's telecast with a book's release. "We also did this with 'Chasing Life' (in 2007), and I think that was the first time CNN had done that sort of thing. It worked well, and we showed that it could be done."
Even if the theme is the same, Gupta knows print and television are vastly different animals. "When I write the book, I'm just doing that. I started that over two years ago with this, so I wasn't really thinking about the television part at all. I thought people might say, 'I don't know how this will be (done for) television.'
"There's a lot of science in the book that wouldn't ever work on television, but the things that would are the consequences of that science the people who have made recoveries when no one thought they would, or the doctor who says, 'I'm going to continue trying, because can anyone here tell me what "dead" really means? No? Then let's keep going.' "
Back from a recent week with CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360" in Afghanistan, Gupta also continues to contribute reports to CBS newscasts. He still practices neurosurgery, too ... so even without being surgeon general, his plate is quite full.
"Mentally and maybe emotionally, I still think of the television thing as my side job," the father of three maintains, "though it has become more prominent in my life than I ever could have imagined."Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times