When Jargon Can Actually Become Life-threatening

We have all done it at one time or another – using job-related jargon when the other person has no connection with the “industry” we work in.  Or – even worse – when the other person’s only experience of the particular “industry” is as a first-time customer.

Worse still is when you happen to be in hospital and some of the Drs appear to be more fluent in “Hospital-ese” than the English language.  At no time is this more true than when you are being treated for a life-threatening condition or two.

I know what a hole in the heart is – after all I was born with one.  Apparently, in “Hospital-ese” this is known as an “ASD”!!! I only found this out after being told that I had informed a Dr that I had had an “ASD” when I was born.  (I remember using the words “hole in the heart”.)

(Apparently, we are now on the hunt for information as to what kind of “receptors” one of my conditions involves so I can get the correct treatment.  Yet another word which seems to mean something different in “Hospital-ese” than it does in the English language.)

As I said at the beginning of this blog post – we are all guilty of using job-related jargon at some time or other.  My last job was with a company who had a Patent for something called a DML – or a Dock(side) Mobile Loader.  This is a large Hopper on wheels which is used a bit like a Funnel with built-in Filters to transfer things like coal and grain from a ship to a lorry without covering the whole area in a layer of dust.  You can probably imagine the jargon I learned as I was typing orders and specifications for them.

Most of the time the jargon we use is merely confusing and irritating. However, we should really try to remember that there is a time and a place for it.  It would be absolutely ideal if we could do away with jargon altogether and use plain English.  This is especially true when the results could include damage to property or loss of life.

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