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Lesson Plan: Greeting Patients

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This lesson plan examines different ways in which a doctor can greet patients.

B2 level

Teacher Notes

●      Topic: Patient admission – greeting a patient

●      Timing: about 30 minutes

●      Lesson Type/Focus: speaking & reading 


●      Speaking: discuss and reflect on the different ways to greet a patient

●     Conversation analysis: review a conversation for appropriate language and responses. Re-write conversation to make more appropriate

●      Reading: rguided group research and discussion on the topic of greeting patients


The focus of this lesson is greeting a patient. The discussion activities encourage students to reflect on practices in their own context and country. The reading activities give an insight into practices in the UK. The conversation analysis/functional language section gives students input and practice in choosing appropriate phrases for greeting a patient.

Note: this lesson uses material from SLC’s course, ‘English for Doctors: Advanced Communication Skills’.

Teaching Guide & Answer Key

Part 1: discussion

Put students into small groups to discuss the questions.
Re-group students and ask them report on the ideas from their group to their new groups. Open up to whole class and continue to discuss.

Suggested answers

  1. What is important when greeting a patient? Think of 3 top tips.
    Tell the patient your name, explain your role, think about effect of using first or last name
  2. What are your experiences of greeting patients?
    Students’ own answers
  3. In your context, how do you think patients prefer to be addressed? Why? (Think about age, cultural background, role of healthcare professional).
    Students’ own answers

Note: If students have not had much experience in a patient-facing role, encourage them to also consider the questions from a patient perspective.

Part 2: greeting patients and explaining your role

Error correction activity. Students work individually or together to find the mistakes in each sentence.


  1. Hello. My name is Dr Rogers. I’m the doctor in on duty today.
  2. I am responsible to for the surgical patients on this ward.
  3. This means I look out for after patients who have just had an operation.
  4. I am the surgical F1 in on call today.

Download the complete lesson plan and student worksheet:

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