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  1. Crowned 91's Avatar
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    healthcare consumers to refer to patients. Why?

    Hi! Patients are also referred to as "healthcare consumers". Why? What's wrong with the word patient?

  2. Barb_D's Avatar
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    Re: healthcare consumers to refer to patients. Why?

    Without meaning to sound snarky, you'll have to ask the people who create the materials that refer to them that way.

    However, the word "consumer" does focus you on the business of healthcare, including price, accessability, affordability, etc. You can have a great product, but if your consumers can't find you, get to you, or afford you, you might as well not have that product. Thinking of patients as (would-be) consumers of healthcare might make this more clear.

    I realize in countries with socialized medicine, this might not make sense.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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    Re: healthcare consumers to refer to patients. Why?


    There is also quite an interesting passive to active shift in meaning.
    (def. from oxforddic)

    patient: A person receiving or registered to receive medical treatment; (the one who is being acted upon)
    customer : A person who buys goods or services from a shop or business; (the one who is acting)

    The change is more in the connotation of the word than its literal meaning.
    Please note I'm not a teacher nor a native speaker.

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