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March 8, 1952


JAMA. 1952;148(10):848-849. doi:10.1001/jama.1952.02930100066018

Comparisons between the practice of law and the practice of medicine can be helpful or misleading. Studies in recent years of the unmet needs for legal and medical services seem to provide some useful comparisons. The term "unmet needs" for legal and medical services has, however, been used in a fashion that implies unmet desires, whims, or mere wants; moreover, for the purposes of medical economics, the term "unmet needs" as used in these studies is quite awkward, because it does not imply that these "needs" are sufficiently acute to induce the individual to seek medical care. The medical economist would prefer the term "demand," because it implies needs or wants coupled with the ability and willingness to actually seek medical attention. If this particular use of the term "unmet needs" is kept in mind, these recent studies do provide some helpful comparisons between the practice of law and the

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