Medical Grammar

by Neha Smith
(India)

Pictured: a doctor

Pictured: a doctor

On Medical Grammar for Non-native Health Professionals


by Neha Smith

Do you know about grammar checking software? Grammar checking software is now very well known. Though this software is not perfect, for non-native English speaking medical personnel (doctors, nurses etc.) it may be helpful for writing memos and letters to the families of patients,or even for communicating with patients if your spoken English is not so good.

Do you know the terms: Nursing Informatics, Health Telematics, Bio signal etc? For example- SNODENT, it’s a term that represents a set of diagnostic codes which is used in the field of dentistry. If you don’t know these terms then start learning from today.

Medical Grammar - Illiteracy

Many of us non-native English speakers are medically illiterate. We learn some basic medical terms in our early childhood that is head, arm, etc. A large number of people don’t understand these medical words or in other words, medical grammar.

They lack the ability to understand medical grammar in an article or in a prescription or medicine bottles. They also lack the vocabulary. A pharmacist I once knew had many native English speaking customers and it was always difficult to communicate with them until he learnedsome medical grammar and vocabulary. What he did was, he went to an English school in Japanand had the teacher, teach him the English for certain Japanese phrases. Then he made his own medical phrase dictionary for his pharmacy.

If you are a medical illiterate then you must check this Grammar checking software. Medical grammar is different from usual grammar as it is writing about scientific documents and all the recent inventions which you’re PC will not understand and mark those words as incorrect. Two types of medical writing exist.

Medical Grammar - Writing

One is Regulatory medical Writing and another is Educational medical writing. Regulatory medical writing is more about the documents that the agencies need to approve all kind of drugs, devices and biologics. But Educational Medical Writing means to write articles for health professionals. It may be about any new medicine or any devices.

Medical writing is different from feature writing as it needs a lot of knowledge on medicine and public health. It establishes a relation between the scientific community and general audience. It’s very crucial to present the work and research of scientists in a correct manner. It’s not a job but a responsibility.

When a physician communicates with a patient then it becomes a little difficult to understand all the medical grammar which the physician is using. It is due to the language barrier which means that they are not aware of the medical terms. It is similar to your computer memory which doesn’t understand all these medical terms.
           

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