For Better or For Worse

For Better or For Worse / Na dobre i na złe

Published: March 5, 2017

For Better or For Worse (Na dobre i na złe) is a Polish medical drama that’s been airing since 1999. It’s one of the longest-running Polish TV shows ever, with more than 600 45-minute episodes.

The show is essentially your standard medical drama; it takes place at a hospital in a small town near Warsaw and tells the stories of the three main characters, all doctors. Each episode features side plots about various patients and other periphery characters—nurses, other doctors, family members. There are various love affairs between the doctors and hospital staff, with all the attending drama; there are also some highly dramatic events reminiscent of Grey’s Anatomy, down to an episode in which a bomb went off in the hospital. There have been a ton of characters over the years, as people die, move away, break up, etc., etc., etc.

The show’s current main star, Anita Sokołowska, who has been on the show since 2004 playing Lena, had a career as a theater actor and ballet dancer before joining the show. She also took part in the celebrity edition of Poland’s Top Chef in 2016.

The show has won a few awards from Telekamera, the Polish TV awards—including best drama series in 2001, 2002, and 2003—but, interestingly, it has also won several medical awards. In 2011 it won awards from the National Health Care System for promoting health, and won an award from a national organization fighting depression for its contributions to the fight against depression.


Director: Maciej Pieprzyca and others
Stars: Anita Sokołowska, Bartosz Opania, Piotr Garlicki, Katarzyna Dąbrowska, Marcin Rogacewicz, Emilia Komarnicka, Michał Żebrowski, Grzegorz Daukszewicz, and others
Production company: TVP, Artrama Sp.z o.o.
TV channel: TVP2



The show’s official website.

A recent (2017) episode of the show:

About the author

Julie Hersh

Julie studied Russian as a Second Language in Irkutsk and before that, Bishkek, with SRAS's Home and Abroad Scholarship program, with the goal of someday having some sort of Russia/Eurasia-related career. She recently got her master’s degree from the University of Glasgow and the University of Tartu, where she studied women’s dissent in Soviet Russia. She also has a bachelor’s degree in literature from Yale. Some of her favorite Russian authors are Sorokin, Shishkin, Il’f and Petrov, and Akhmatova. In her spare time Julie cautiously practices martial arts, reads feminist websites, and taste-tests instant coffee for her blog.

Program attended: Home and Abroad Scholar

View all posts by: Julie Hersh