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A clinician is a professional dealing with a patient's medical condition, eg a doctor, nurse, physiotherapist. It is a non-specific term, not implying any particular qualification or branch of medicine.

The term tends to encompass the whole sphere of medical practice, rather than just medically-qualified doctors, eg -

  • doctors
  • nurses
  • physiotherapists
  • chiropractors
  • osteopaths
  • podiatrists
  • etc


Clinicians work under the eagle eye of their respective governing bodies, (eg doctors in the UK are controlled by the General Medical Council) who have the power to cancel their registration (licence to practice) if they are found to be incompetent or to suspend them from practice while under investigation.

All clinicians must carry hefty professional indemnity insurance before they are allowed to practice, although in some countries (eg UK) the State may act as the insurer for State patients.

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