Doctors alone hold clinical responsibility for their patients. It is up to them whether or not they concern themselves beyond the clinical field. The hospital patient does not necessarily suffer as a result of any failure to do so, because ward sisters are responsible for other aspects of care while the hospital machine provides for comprehensive resources which can be mobilised without as well as within medical prescription. It employs its own catering, domestic and portering staffs and paramedical workers; it organises social worker support; it draws upon the contributions of volunteers; and it lays down guidelines for the mobilisation of family support towards enhanced patient comfort.
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