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March 25, 1983

Clinicians and Laboratory Specialists

Author Affiliations

Wilmington, Del

JAMA. 1983;249(12):1563. doi:10.1001/jama.1983.03330360017010

To the Editor.—  I have just read "A Fable of the Clinic" in the Nov 12 issue of The Journal (1982;248:2321).It is most saddening to see that the author had to withhold his or her name. Thus, what happened is less a fable and much a tragedy.The problem addressed by the fable is that of the lack of understanding and respect between clinicians and laboratory specialists. It would be much better if both could regard each other as two different breeds of scientist. They both depend on each other's work.The clinician practices the art of medicine. If a clinician, however, is not also a scientist, the essence of the art will hold no water.The laboratory specialist is the pioneer who finds new understanding in old knowledge, in new knowledge, and sometimes even in the recovery of old knowledge and understanding. While most of the laboratory specialist's