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Shifting Equilibrium is the twentieth episode of the fifteenth season of the NBC medical drama series ER . It premiered on March 19, 2009.

"Shifting Equilibrium"
Season 15, Episode 20
Air date March 19, 2009
US viewers 9.28 M
Written by Lisa Zwerling
Directed by Andrew Bernstein
Episode Guide
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Neela proves her worth as attending material when she clashes with Dubenko on how to proceed with two different surgical cases. Brenner gains a deep insight into his painful childhood.

Cast and Characters


Parminder Nagra as Dr. Neela Rasgotra

John Stamos as Dr. Tony Gates

Linda Cardellini as Nurse Sam Taggart

Scott Grimes as Dr. Archie Morris

David Lyons as Dr. Simon Brenner

Angela Bassett as Dr. Cate Banfield


Justina Machado as Detective Claudia Diaz

Leland Orser as Dr. Lucien Dubenko

Yvette Freeman as Nurse Haleh Adams

Laura Cerón as Nurse Chuny Marquez

Gil McKinney as Dr. Paul Grady

Julian Morris as Dr. Andrew Wade

Troy Evans as Frank Martin


Shane West as Dr. Ray Barnett

Maura Tierney as Dr. Abby Lockhart

M.C. Gainey as Darrion Walters

Diego Klattenhoff as Jay

Christopher B. Duncan as Matthew Graham



  • The music number played at the end when Neela is leaving and joining Ray is the same music number that plays for Dr. Greene in Orion in the Sky when he is leaving, and for Abby when she is dancing with Frank and leaving as well.
  • The song played during Neela's farewell party is "Yeh Ladka Hai Allah" from the 2001 Bollywood film, Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham.
  • Although listed in the opening credits, Angela Bassett does not appear in this episode.
  • The title of the episode relates to the name of the medical facility where Neela arrives at the end of the episode - "Lechatlier Medical Center." In chemistry, LeChatlier's Principle states "if a system at equilibrium is disturbed, the system will, if possible, shift to partially counteract the change."
  • As with Dr. Lockhart, who put Kovač and her name, a few episode ago, Neela Rasgotra put her name of the wall with the other who had done it before, either willingly or it was done posthumously in the case of Drs. Greene, Romano, Gallant and Pratt, and med student Lucy Knight.


  1. Cancel Bear, The (March 20, 2009). "Thursday Ratings: Down To The Wire ". TV by the Numbers. (May 24, 2015).