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Middle English compainoun, from Anglo-French cumpaing, cumpaignun, from Late Latin companion-, companio, from Latin com- + panis bread, food


  • 1 : one that accompanies another : comrade, associate; also : one that keeps company with another
  • 2 obsolete : rascal
  • 3 a : one that is closely connected with something similar
b : one employed to live with and serve another
  • 4 : a celestial body that appears close to another but that may or may not be associated with it in space

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In health care and caregiving, a companion, sitter, or private duty may be a nurse, nurse assistant, or similar professional who is hired to work with one patient (or occasionally two). Companions may be hired to work in a variety of settings, including nursing homes, assisted living facilities, hospitals, and private homes, and their duties range from advanced medical care to simple companionship and observation.[1]