Sorry, but no..:

  1. I'm sorry but no. I do not call the people I work for, clients. They are my patients. I do not charge them nor solicit them. I care for them. I have gone to (or am going to) school for my professional designation as a registered nurse. I can't stand the term "client". Seriously. We are not in retail.
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  2. 37 Comments

  3. by   priorities2
    I get that the emphasis on customer service can seem contrived or be frustrating, but it's semantics.

    Therapists often use the term clients because the clients come in for a weekly therapy session and so patient doesn't fit, especially if they are seeking services because, for example, they're going through a major life transition or learning strategies to deal with an addict in their life. Psych RNs/PMHNPs might also use the term client in outpt settings for the same reasons.

    I think it depends, but it's really just semantics.
  4. by   seconddegreebsn
    Don't worry, they'll have another term in a year or so
  5. by   LoriBSN2b
    The term patient implies weakness and client implies consumer. There is a trend towards empowering a "patient" as a health care consumer. Hence the term client.
  6. by   BuckyBadgerRN
    Ha Ha----Medicare will tell you otherwise! As reimbursements are being based on the satisfaction of the consumer, the trend is definitely towards referring to the recipient of those services as clients. And unless you are an independent contractor working as a private duty nurse, you don't work "FOR" an individual--you work for the hospital, agency, facility or some other entity. Or wait, are you still a student? If so, your tune may change once you're out actually caring for clients in exchange for Medicare funded dollars....
  7. by   SopranoKris
    I can't stand the term "client". When I read my text, I mentally change it to patient.
  8. by   Everline
    Years ago I used to work for a social service organization that did not want you to use "patient" or "client", no matter if you were one of the many nurses that worked there. You couldn't even use the word "resident" for the people who lived in group homes. Everyone was a "consumer". We heard things like: "Did the consumers receive their meds?" "Did the doctor see the consumers?" Plus we had to use this word on all paperwork. It was extra bizarre and sounded rather cold to me. At that point client would have been far preferable.
  9. by   krisiepoo
    sounds like a silly power struggle to me... who cares what you call them as long as you do right by them?
  10. by   HouTx
    Silly, isn't it? Our LTC and ALF folks have to deal with "residents" - which always brings me the visual of those annoying quasi-doctors in short lab coats. I never heard of "consumer" before, that really sounds inane. Hey, as long as we don't call them "victims", I can cope.
  11. by   imintrouble
    Quote from Everline
    Years ago I used to work for a social service organization that did not want you to use "patient" or "client", no matter if you were one of the many nurses that worked there. You couldn't even use the word "resident" for the people who lived in group homes. Everyone was a "consumer". We heard things like: "Did the consumers receive their meds?" "Did the doctor see the consumers?" Plus we had to use this word on all paperwork. It was extra bizarre and sounded rather cold to me. At that point client would have been far preferable.
    Who thinks of this stuff?
  12. by   elkpark
    Quote from imintrouble
    Who thinks of this stuff?
    Lots of outpatient mental health services/programs use "consumer." I don't care for it myself (I am a long-time "client" user), but there are plenty of agencies that use it.
  13. by   Stitchy's mom
    Not fond of the term "Client" either. When I speak of "the ill" they are "patients", but when I chart they're "clients." I know we have to do these things to be "Politically Correct."
  14. by   JessNZ
    I think of it as empowering to the "patient" to be called a client particularly if they're in a rest home or a person using primary health or mental health services.
    In New Zealand people using mental health services have many titles I guess you could say, they can be called clients (which is the most common term used amongst nurses), service users/consumers (which is the term used in ministry of health documents) or patients. I think the main reason names alternative to patient are used is to transfer some of the power to the client and it also helps them get out of the sick role. If someone has a mental illness, they are most likely going to live with it for life in varying degrees of severity, therefore if they are called clients it may help them to see that they are 'regular' people and they just also happen to have a mental illness. After all of this rambling I guess I'm saying calling "patients" client's is a positive thing.

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