Men in White takes place in a New York City hospital in the early 1930s. The hospital is typical of those found in large cities. The play presents this setting, and the characters who inhabit it, in an utterly realistic fashion. All of the details reflect the state of the medical profession in the early 1930s, from the medical techniques to the instruments and the treatments. For instance, in the 1930s, insulin was just beginning to be used on diabetics and blood transfusions were starting to be performed. The characters also make many references to issues surrounding the medical community, mentioning actual doctors and surgeons, medical school education, and even illegal abortions. The committee members talk in blunt terms about the perilous financial situation that hospitals face because of the Great Depression. The doctors discuss their concern over the government's involvement in medical institutions, which caused many doctors of the period a great deal of worry. For its original 1933 production, the script of Men in White contained numerous footnotes to clarify many of the points and references raised throughout the drama, as well as the medical terminology.