Are they really "doctors"?

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by nosborne48, May 24, 2023.

  1. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    Audiologists I mean. I know that the various programs have adopted the Au.D. degree. Why not? Everybody else is doing it, right? What gets me is how hard the profession is pushing that "Doctor" title in advertising their practices, at least around here. I haven’t seen anything like it since chiropractic. I understand that their diplomas contain the word "doctor" but are they really "doctors" in the health care sense?
  2. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Are dentists? Because it's the same model. Podiatrists and optometrists are similar as well.

    And unlike chiropractors, they exclusively study evidence-based medicine, so while they're not whole-body physicians, one should feel confident being treated by them for issues concerning their body part of specialization. I do: as a gout sufferer, I can assure you that my podiatrist knows what she's doing!
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    TEKMAN Semper Fi!

    Is DBA a Doctor? Asking of my future self. :D
  4. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    If your business is in trouble, yes. If it's your thyroid - no.
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  5. Futuredegree

    Futuredegree Well-Known Member

    I think they are doctors in their respective medical fields. They have certain knowledge of a particular body part or specialization which allows them to distinguish themselves. I would consider an audiologist a doctor myself. Some of them work in hospitals where they run departments and normal physicians are referring them over to the audiologist because they have advanced training rather than general training.

    This reminds me of the orthopedist vs podiatrist argument. Which doctor is correct for a broken ankle?
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  6. Maniac Craniac

    Maniac Craniac Moderator Staff Member

    In my work as a medical interpreter, I've never seen an audiologist nor physical therapist refer to themselves, nor expect others to refer to them, by the title "Doctor". I think the title would be warranted given that they are in the healthcare field, have the "Doctor" nomenclature for their degree and share a position parallel to physicians within their practices. However, it's not been customary (yet) to call them doctors. I find it obnoxious if they were taking the liberty to jump ahead of standard practice.

    The PAs and NPs I've worked with are all on a first name basis with their patients, even though they do the work of doctors. I think they deserve some kind of title other than the clunky Nurse Practitioner/Physician Assistant So-and-so that I sometimes hear their colleagues use.

    Then again, maybe referring to them by their first name creates an atmosphere of familiarity and comfort that allows patients to open up. That would be an interesting thing for, say, a linguistics Ph.D candidate to research one day :emoji_nerd:
    Jonathan Whatley likes this.
  7. Garp

    Garp Well-Known Member

    I was in a hospital and saw someone in scrubs wearing a surgical cap. His shirt was embroidered as Dr. So A. So, DPharm. Apparently, the hospital felt comfortable with that designation. I am fine with it as long as it is clear who I am dealing with. Already can be hard to tell if the person in scrubs is a nurse or respiratory therapist.
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  8. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    Well, a dentist and a podiatrist are both physicians and surgeons within the limits of their licenses. Does that make any difference? Maybe not. I don’t know.
    RoscoeB and Maniac Craniac like this.
  9. chrisjm18

    chrisjm18 Well-Known Member

  10. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    "Doctor" shouldn't be conflated with "physician." In some countries, they don't call their physicians doctors because they don't have doctoral degrees.
    JoshD and Rachel83az like this.
  11. Michael Burgos

    Michael Burgos Active Member

    Just thinking here: An MD is three years of classroom/clinical instruction followed by a year of full-time residency. So is the AuD, albeit in the science and medicine of audiology. It seems to me that the AuD is a doctorate in the healthcare sense. I personally think Chiropractic is pseudoscientific and thus not comparable. In any event, One of my children was born deaf. While I am thankful she gained her hearing over time, the audiology department at our local children's hospital was phenomenal.

    Another observation here regarding professional degrees: The AuD and MD are about four years of education beyond the undergraduate degree. The average minister typically earns a baccalaureate degree (usually in a related field) followed by an MDiv (three years of coursework in specific subjects) or its equivalent through the relevant alternative graduate program(s). Then, most either participate in an internship for at least a year prior to their first associate pastorate. DMin admission typically requires at least 3 years of pastoral or related ministry experience and the degree constitutes about 3-4 years of study including a substantial research component. That is, the DMin equates to about 10 yrs of formal study while the MD, for example, amounts to 8-9-- and all of this without either the BMW or an enormous salary. An adjustment is needed somewhere, and I don't mean the chiropractic variety.
    RoscoeB and newsongs like this.
  12. Michael Burgos

    Michael Burgos Active Member

    My local hospital color codes scrubs according to profession (light blue = CNA; grey= phlebotomy; dark blue = RN; light green = doctor). Having been there more times than I can count (for visitation mostly), I have found that practice helpful.
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  13. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Forget the diploma. You, of all of us, know that's not the deciding factor.

    They either are or are not doctors according to their positions in their professions. Thus, an audiologist is a doctor while a nurse practitioner with a DNP is not. (But that DNP WOULD be considered a doctor in an academic setting. And I've seen lawyers addressed that way, too.)

    When I am in a clinic as a patient or (in younger years) as a trainer, I am not a doctor because that connotes something that is not accurate. And I think that is what matters: the truth.
  14. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    In academic and in almost all professional settings, yes.
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  15. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    And in others the Bachelor of Medicine leads to the title "doctor" because it is the position in the profession, not the degree, that determines the title. (As I understand it, medical doctors in the UK who go on to get a degree in surgery are then called "mister.")
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  16. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Or the janitor.
    Suss, Garp and Maniac Craniac like this.
  17. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Or not. Market forces and all that.
  18. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Never seen this. But I like it.
  19. chrisjm18

    chrisjm18 Well-Known Member

    Good point. It can be misleading. I recently saw a news story about a county health officer who was killed (Dr. Calandra Green). I assumed as I imagine others would, that she was a medical doctor. It turned out that she was an RN with an Ed.D. and an MBA.

  20. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    Is it that they are not a doctor in their position or that the use of the title would cause confusion in certain settings?

    For example, a counselor might go by doctor in an independent practice, but might not use the title when working with psychologists and psychiatrists.

    Or, is it that what really matters is the degree required for licensure? A psychologist has a doctoral-level license (in most cases) whereas a counselor or social worker has a masters-level license even if they have doctoral degrees in counseling or social work.

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