Patient

Use this forum to suggest Good Words for Professor Beard.
David Myer
Lexiterian
Posts: 208
Joined: Wed Nov 11, 2009 3:21 am
Location: Melbourne

Patient

Postby David Myer » Wed Jan 23, 2019 6:07 pm

Everyone else has customers or, slightly pompously, even snobbishly, clients. But the medical professions have patients. When I visit my doctor, I go out of my way to refer to myself as a customer. Everyone winces a little, but I think it does no harm to remind them...

There is a sort of suggestion that 'we professionals are far above trade'; there is some altruistic motive to our occupation that puts us higher than 'work' or even money. It's nonsense of course.

I see that the 'happy to wait' meaning is directly connected to the 'customer' meaning through the Latin origin meaning 'suffering'.

Does anyone have alternative suggestions for why doctors have patients?

As a footnote to this, I just asked my partner the question and she suggested that we are called patients because we have to wait so long after the appointed hour to get service. Perhaps she has a point.

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call_copse
Senior Lexiterian
Posts: 602
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2009 7:42 am
Location: Southampton

Re: Patient

Postby call_copse » Fri Jan 25, 2019 7:19 am

Lol at your partner. I bet she's got an interesting story or two!
Iain


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