Use the term physician and surgeon, says Dr. Chip

Dr. Chip explores the definition of “doctor” vs. “physician and surgeon”

For clarification or just plain precision we must learn to use the term physician and surgeon since this is a more distinct and clearly defined entity in our culture for the moment. Our diploma and licenses speak to this directly.

Doctor has come to mean anyone achieving a “doctoral level of study” from an accredited institution having satisfied a specific set of credential requirements, examination(s) and practical observation(s) where indicated, published in peer reviewed journals and completed a research (literature, theoretical or practical science project) component to base the thesis upon and a defense of the thesis.

The word Doctor takes its original meaning is from the route word for teacher and therefore has a high degree of education behind its definition while the  route word for Physician means physique or physical self meaning of the body and therefore related to health. together they mean a highly educated individual with qualified expertise in the knowledge of the functions of human systems (body).

Physician according to Meriam Webster’s online dictionary, means;  a person skilled in the art of healing; specifically :  one educated, clinically experienced, and licensed to practice medicine as usually distinguished from surgery.

Surgeon: a doctor who performs operations that involve cutting into someone’s body in order to repair or remove damaged or diseased parts : a doctor who performs.

The term Doctor is often confused with this because of these somewhat circuitous definitions and is clarified or obfuscated in the dictionary definition of “doctor” in the following way;

Full Definition of DOCTOR

:  an eminent theologian declared a sound expounder ofdoctrine by the Roman Catholic Church —called also doctor of the church

:  a learned or authoritative teacher

:  a person who has earned one of the highest academic degrees (as a PhD) conferred by a university

:  a person awarded an honorary doctorate (as an LLD or Litt D) by a college or university

:  a person skilled or specializing in healing arts; especially:  one (as a physician, dentist, or veterinarian) who holds an advanced degree and is licensed to practice

:  medicine man

:  material added (as to food) to produce a desired effect

:  a blade (as of metal) for spreading a coating or scraping a surface

:  a person who restores, repairs, or fine-tunes things

We have received a doctorate in medicine and surgery in the form of a diploma of medicine and surgery with the receipt of doctoral candidacy qualifications being met, hoods, colors, rank and privileges thereto granted as lifetime achievements.

Therefore we are properly be called men and women with doctorates in medicine and surgery, specifically physicians. To be sure this is a PhD equivalent well within the range of academic requirements to receive this distinction. Doctorates are not rescinded while licenses can be.F

For clarification again, to rescind means:  to end (a law, contract, agreement, etc.) officially : to say officially that (something) is no longer valid.

This needs to be remembered in all our writing and to be re-emphasized in all our communications with the rest of the world. This is what Dr. Holland is speaking about when he says we have earned our rights and we can only lose them if we let them take them away. Our training cannot be taken away nor given to any other level of training unless it is training that is exactly equivalent to ours.

The AOA and others already mentioned countless time have forgotten this key piece of data.


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