A careful reading of historical and medical literature provides us with some interesting (and sometimes amusing) statements about the relationships between physicians, patients, and the care that the former provide to the latter. Here are just eight:

  • “Healing is a matter of time, but it is sometimes also a matter of opportunity.”
Hippocrates of Kos (c. 460 – c. 370 BCE)
  • “The competent physician, before he attempts to give medicine to the patient, makes himself acquainted not only with the disease, but also with the habits and constitution of the sick man.”
Marcus Tullius Cicero (106 – 43 BCE)
  • “Poison is in everything, and no thing is without poison. The dosage makes it either a poison or a remedy.”
Philippus A. T. B. von Hohenheim, also known as Paracelus (1493 – 1541)
  • “Doctors pour drugs of which they know little, to cure diseases of which they know less, into patients of whom they know nothing.”
Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, better known by his stage name, Molière (1622 – 1673)
  • “The art of medicine consists in amusing the patient while nature cures the disease.”
François-Marie Arouet, better known by his nom de plume, Voltaire (1694 – 1778)
  • “A doctor who cannot take a good history and a patient who cannot give one are in danger of giving and receiving bad treatment.”
Anonymous
  • “In the sick room, ten cents’ worth of human understanding equals ten dollars’ worth of medical science.”
Martin H. Fischer, MD (1879 – 1962)
  • “Financial ruin from medical bills is almost exclusively an American disease.”
Widely attributed to an unidentifiable Roul Turley


About Mike Scott

Mike Scott is a highly experienced health care communications strategist with Calcium. He is also a board member of three different patient advocacy organizations. To get more detail, see his profile on LinkedIn.

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