“The Good Doctor” Offers a Peek at the Surgeons’ Bright Futures in Series Finale: How It Ended After 7 Seasons

The ABC medical drama came to an end on May 21, offering closure to the surgeons at San Jose St. Bonaventure Hospital

<p>Disney/Jeff Weddell</p>

Disney/Jeff Weddell

The surgeons at San Jose St. Bonaventure Hospital are hanging up their scrubs for good after seven seasons of trying medical cases and personal ups and downs.

The Good Doctor’s series finale — which aired on Thursday, May 21 — picked up where the penultimate episode left off, with Claire (Antonia Thomas) undergoing treatment for complications related to stage 1 breast cancer. A tissue sample of Claire’s, however, revealed the cancer has spread further than expected, and she went into septic shock. Shaun (Freddie Highmore) eventually went to her and successfully operated on her.

While Claire struggled for survival, Dr. Glassman (Richard Schiff) disclosed he had three to six months of survival since his cancer has returned and was now terminal. Shaun — who remained attached to Dr. Glassman as ever despite their rocky friendship — refused to accept his friend’s medical diagnosis. He gathered the surgeon team, including Audrey Lim (Christina Chang), Alex Park (Will Yun Lee) and Morgan (Fiona Gubelmann) to troubleshoot a way to help him beat the cancer.

Shaun presented Dr. Glassman’s medical file without revealing the patient’s name to the group, but after disclosing some of the patient’s medical history, they quickly realized it was the hospital’s co-president.

Related: Freddie Highmore Says Farewell to The Good Doctor: It's 'Just Hard' to 'Think About the End' (Exclusive)

<p>Disney/Jeff Weddell</p> Christina Chang and Richard Schiff in the series finale of 'The Good Doctor.'

Disney/Jeff Weddell

Christina Chang and Richard Schiff in the series finale of 'The Good Doctor.'

"The patient's identity isn't medically relevant," he said, when asked whether the info presented is Dr. Glassman’s.

While the surgeons quietly questioned whether Shaun’s search for a treatment is even worth pursuing at this point, Park explained to the doctors aiding Shaun at this point wasn't so much about actually finding a viable solution but helping him to realize the inevitable.

"Until Shaun accepts what we already know — that there is no treatment," Park explained.

Dr. Glassman and Shaun eventually had a heart-to-heart, and the hospital co-president explained he doesn’t want to suffer through painful treatments that may extend his life by another six months to a year. He wanted to enjoy the time he has left, particularly with Shaun.

Shaun may not have agreed with his friend’s choice, but he did learn to accept it. The next several scenes begin to wind down the finale with a long montage of scenes that illustrate what happens to many of the doctors in the years to come. Audrey stepped down as president and joined a doctors outreach program abroad; newlyweds Alex and Morgan, meanwhile, relished moments playing with their adopted daughter Eden in her nursery.

Related: The Good Doctor: Shaun Murphy's 5 Best Moments That Made Us Laugh and Cry

<p>Disney/Jeff Weddell</p> Will Yun Lee and Fional Gubelmann in the series finale of 'The Good Doctor.'

Disney/Jeff Weddell

Will Yun Lee and Fional Gubelmann in the series finale of 'The Good Doctor.'

As for Shaun, the gifted surgeon and Dr. Glassman spent the final months of his mentor’s life together, summed up in a moving scene in which the two ride a carousel together at night, with Dr. Glassman woefully glancing at Shaun.

But happiness lied ahead for Shaun, too. He and his wife Lea (Paige Spara) had not one, but two children, who grew into their pre-teens through time-lapsed scenes. Shaun continued to rise through the ranks and became Chief of Surgery. Through a stirring TED talk he gave — with Claire, her husband Jared (Chuku Modu), Alex, Morgan and his young family watching from the audience — Shaun traced his surprising journey and praised his friends for their unfailing support.

He capped off the final episode by discussing a foundation established in Dr. Glassman’s name and co-run by Claire that aims to help patients with neurological disorders. The foundation turned into a success with support from dozens of hospitals around the world. It was Shaun's hope that through the foundation, he could pay it forward and transform the lives of patients the way Dr. Glassman, through 7 seasons of The Good Doctor, meaningfully helped him.

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All 7 of seasons of The Good Doctor are available to stream on Hulu.

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