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April 4, 1914

"The Doctor Can Wait"

Author Affiliations

Gig Harbor, Wash.

JAMA. 1914;LXII(14):1110-1111. doi:10.1001/jama.1914.02560390050030

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To the Editor:  —The complaint of Dr. Schreiber (The Journal, Feb. 21, 1914, p. 633) of the lay point of view that John Doe's debt to the doctor can wait until other debts are paid is just; but Dr. Schreiber does not, to my mind, indicate how and in what direction that point of view is to be changed.Practically all of us provide better for regular every-day items of expense, like store-bills and rent than for occasional or accidental demands; therefore, when John Doe is unfortunate, Dr. Smith is very apt to be the last creditor paid, if paid at all. Dr. Smith may, indeed, force his collections, or may refuse further service to John Doe, or, like Robin Hood, may even matters up by exacting heavier fees from wealthier patients; but the objections to either plan are, I think, perfectly obvious.John Doe, a good citizen, doing his

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