What is the name of the paper that a doctor writes for someone letting his/her school, workplace, etc know that he/she has been sick for a period of time and needs to rest (off from work or school)?

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    "Doctor's note" is the one I've most commonly heard in semi-formal contexts. Oct 9, 2017 at 13:48
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    Side note (not really a full answer) - when I read "allowance", I thought you were talking about "money", rather than "permission".
    – Soron
    Oct 9, 2017 at 15:00

3 Answers 3


It may also be called simply a doctor's note, being the most succinct description of what it is - a short note from a doctor explaining the person is unfit for work.

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    "Doctor's note" or "note from the doctor" are the most common ways to refer to this kind of document in the US. Oct 9, 2017 at 10:53
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    They are likewise the most common names for this sort of thing in the UK.
    – Myles
    Oct 9, 2017 at 17:22
  • Any source stating the same would be helpful.
    – CinCout
    Oct 10, 2017 at 3:40

It's called a medical certificate, or simply "doctor's certificate".

This certificate "attests to the result of a medical examination of a patient". Note that the result of the aforesaid examination can declare the examinee either fit or unfit.

The "sick note" is a "documentation that an employee is unfit for work", i.e., he/she is really sick.

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    isn't medical certificate given to someone who has completed medial school? Oct 9, 2017 at 5:23
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    That'd be a medical degree. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medical_degree
    – CinCout
    Oct 9, 2017 at 5:24
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    there is a phrase (sick note) in the link you have provided. I assume it is the informal synonym for medical certificate, right? Oct 9, 2017 at 5:28
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    @AshkanMobayenKhiabani yes.
    – Muzer
    Oct 9, 2017 at 9:35
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    Where is the phrase "doctor's certificate" used? I'm in the US and I don't think I've ever heard that phrase used. Oct 9, 2017 at 13:19

In a private school in the UK, it might be called an exeat — Latin for “he may leave”.

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    No, that's the permission slip to allow a pupil to go out of school, for example for a doctor's appointment. Oct 9, 2017 at 18:22
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    It would be helpful to include a summary for the relevant bits from your link. Linked material can change or become inaccessible, and we would rather have the complete answer here instead of pushing our visitors off to Wikipedia.
    – ColleenV
    Oct 9, 2017 at 18:44

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