Access to treatment with controlled medicines rationale and recommendations for neutral, precise, and respectful language

6 Sep 2017

It has been shown that language can propagate stigma, and that stigma can prevent people from seeking help and influence the effectiveness of social and public-health policies. The focus of using appropriate terminology should extend to all patients who need controlled medicines, avoiding negative wording. A narrow focus on a few terms and medical communication only should be avoided.

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The appropriateness of terms is not absolute and indeed varies between cultures and regions and over time. For this reason, it is important that communities establish their own consensus of what is ‘neutral’, ‘precise’, and ‘respectful’. 

NB free access to PDF of full paper available until early December - here

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