name for an institution providing medical diagnosis and treatment for ambulatory patients. The forerunner of the modern clinic was the dispensary, which dispensed free drugs and served only those who could not afford to pay a fee. Dispensaries began to appear in London toward the end of the 17th cent. In the United States the first dispensary was founded in Philadelphia in 1786 through the efforts of Benjamin Rush
. Another was established in New York City in 1791, and one in Boston in 1796. Home care was often provided by the early clinics, but later they evolved as places for treatment of those who could visit them. As the clinic movement grew and concern for public health increased, facilities for providing diagnosis and treatment improved. Present-day clinics are maintained by private and city hospitals, by city health departments, by industrial and labor organizations, and by groups of private physicians. Some clinics specialize in vaccination and other measures to prevent infectious disease. Some are established to promote the health of babies and mothers. Others exist to facilitate the diagnosis of tuberculosis or cancer so that these diseases may be treated as early as possible. There are also clinics concerned with mental health. Clinics designated as health centers offer all the health services that are considered essential. They provide free, comprehensive service for people who cannot afford private care. In some areas mobile units travel from place to place providing various kinds of medical and dental care. Clinics maintained by industrial and labor organizations are often free for members, but others charge a nominal fee; in hospital clinics the fee is usually based on the individual's ability to pay.
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A medical facility; independent or part of a hospital in which ambulatory patients receive diagnostic and therapeutic medical and surgical care.
Illustrated Dictionary of Architecture Copyright © 2012, 2002, 1998 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.
an inpatient medical institution in which treatment of patients is combined with medical research and teaching (the instruction of students and the advanced training of physicians) in various branches of practical medicine and clinical disciplines, including surgery, obstetrics, and pediatrics. In the USSR, medical research institutes and institutions of higher learning either have their own clinics or use the facilities of municipal hospitals or medical-preventive institutions (such hospitals and medical-preventive institutions are called clinical or clinics). Clinics in other socialist countries are organized on similar principles. Capitalist countries have university clinics; private hospitals, depending chiefly on a prosperous clientele, are also called clinics.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
1. A facility, independent or part of a hospital, in which ambulatory patients receive diagnostic and therapeutic medical and surgical care.
2. Single-focus or general-purpose units of the entire facility, such as the cardiac clinic or the pediatric clinic.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
1. a place in which outpatients are given medical treatment or advice, often connected to a hospital
2. a similar place staffed by physicians or surgeons specializing in one or more specific areas
3. Brit a private hospital or nursing home
4. Obsolete the teaching of medicine to students at the bedside
5. US a place in which medical lectures are given
6. US a clinical lecture
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005