- A physician is a person trained in the art of healing. In reality, contemporary physicians express their skills by combining art with science. A physician is also referred to as a doctor of medicine. The term "physician" is used somewhat differently in different English-speaking countries. For example, in the UK a physician is a specialist in internal or general medicine while in the USA it is a more general term for a doctor of medicine. The word "physician" entered Middle English in the 13th century as "fisicien" from the Old French "fisique" meaning medicine. Curiously, English today is the only language in which "physician" has a medical meaning. In French, a physician ("physicien") refers to a physicist, as it does in all other tongues that possess the term.
* * *1. A doctor; a person who has been educated, trained, and licensed to practice the art and science of medicine. 2. A practitioner of medicine, as contrasted with a surgeon. [Fr. physicien, a natural philosopher]- attending p. 1. p. responsible for the care of a patient; 2. p. supervising the care of patients by interns, residents, and/or medical students. 3. a doctor who has completed internship and residency.- hospital-based p. SYN: hospitalist (1).
* * *phy·si·cian fə-'zish-ən n a skilled health-care professional trained and licensed to practice medicine specif a doctor of medicine or osteopathy
* * *n.a registered medical practitioner who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of disease by other than surgical means. In the USA the term is applied to any authorized medical practitioner. See also Doctor.
* * *phy·si·cian (fĭ-zishґən) 1. an authorized practitioner of medicine, as one graduated from a college of medicine or osteopathy and licensed by the appropriate board. See also doctor. 2. one who practices medicine as distinct from surgery.
Medical dictionary. 2011.