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IV. This piece of advice also will need our consideration, as it contributes somewhat to the whole. For should you begin by discussing fees, you will suggest to the patient either that you will go away and leave him if no agreement be reached, or that you will neglect him and not prescribe any immediate treatment. So one must not be anxious about fixing a fee. For I consider such a worry to be harmful to a troubled patient, particularly if the disease be acute. For the quickness of the disease, offering no opportunity for turning back,1 spurs on the good physician not to seek his profit but rather to lay hold on reputation. Therefore it is better to reproach a patient you have saved than to extort money from2 those who are at death's door.

1 I. e. from missed opportunities that have passed away while haggling over fees. It is possible that ἀνας1τροφή has here the sense of ἀνας1τρέφειν καρίδαν in Thucydides II. 49, " to upset." An acute disease is not the time to upset a patient with financial worries.

2 Or, if Coray's emendation be adopted, " to tease."

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