Hi I'm trying to find a word to describe a situation as follows:

Giving better care to a patient of a particular religion or culture because they asked for it specifically. Not the same religion as the caregiver, therefore I don't think it's nepotism. I'm trying to write a paper asking why we do not give this 'better' care to all of our patients, not just those that ask for it.


  • 1
    Perhaps bias ? Although not specific to religion, it does reflect the situation.
    – Pogrindis
    Sep 8 '15 at 13:55
  • chauvinism - excessive support for one's own group ... etc. -- oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/chauvinism Sep 8 '15 at 14:57
  • 'Discrimination' can be positive as well as negative.
    – JHCL
    Sep 8 '15 at 14:59
  • I don't understand. When faced with two individuals with the same condition, and both ask for a level a care, the institution will grant to one and deny the other based on what? Does the institution make a background check before making a decision?
    – jxh
    Sep 8 '15 at 16:27
  • jxh the specific cases involve care of premature babies. A Jehovah's Witness family will receive specific treatments to reduce likelihood of transfusion. The same care could be given to non Jehovah's Witness families, however it is not. Transfusion is high in risk. Therefore the first family are receiving better/safer care because of their religious belief.
    – debs
    Sep 8 '15 at 18:54

Favouritism (favoritism)


the practice of giving special treatment to a person or group

  • This has been downvoted; I'm not going to grumble because I realise that the important feature may be the 'asking for special treatment' element; something that 'favouritism' doesn't necessarily reflect. I'll leave the answer here though, for reference.
    – JHCL
    Sep 8 '15 at 14:31
  • (and of course, the fact that it appears in the question. Doh.)
    – JHCL
    Sep 8 '15 at 14:49

I am not aware of one particular word that meets the definition you've suggested. However, there are a number of words (often compounds) that express thoughts about a specific culture or religion. In many cases, these words combine an ethnic, national, or religious term with a compound such as anti-, -philia, or -phobia.

  1. Germanophobia: strong dislike of, or prejudice against, Germans.
  2. Italiophilia: love of or favoritism towards Italy, Italians, and Italian culture.
  3. Antisemitism: hatred of Jews, Judaism, and Jewish culture.
  4. Papist: a derogatory euphemism (of Protestant origin) for a Roman Catholic.
  5. Anglocentrism: a tendency to regard English culture, society, or language as pre-eminent.
  6. Japanophile: One who loves Japanese culture, history, language, etc.
  7. Semitophilia/Judeophilia: the opposite of antisemitism.
  8. Anti-Protestantism: disdain for Protestantism.

Note that the first six words exist in the OED, whereas the remainder do not.


Your description seems to imply that the crux of the issue is that the care is better once requested, rather than any religion based bias. If my understanding is correct, you could suggest excellent care be give by default rather than upon request.

If a single word is needed, bias or partisanship might fit the bill.

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