Definition of on call in English:

on call

See synonyms for on call


  • 1(of a person) able to be contacted in order to provide a professional service if necessary, but not formally on duty.

    ‘our technicians are on call around the clock’
    • ‘There is an emergency ski patrol service on call 24 hours a day.’
    • ‘If a physical exam is to be done the physician on call will be contacted.’
    • ‘Top marks also to all who remained on duty, or on call, over the festive period.’
    • ‘If she is not on duty, she is on call so that she can respond around the clock to patients' needs.’
    • ‘I am on call today and went in to do my ward round earlier.’
    • ‘The physicians can work fewer hours, both in the office and on call, and as they are able to delegate many tasks they can provide better services.’
    • ‘The team is on call 24 hours-a-day, and is trained in resuscitation techniques and how to use live-saving defibrillators.’
    • ‘Generally, these caregivers work year round with no vacation and are on call 24 hours a day.’
    • ‘You have to get up in the middle of the night if you're on call.’
    • ‘If you work in a global organization, you might be on call 24 hours a day for troubleshooting or consulting.’
    on duty, on standby, standing by, ready, available
    View synonyms
  • 2(of money lent) repayable on demand.

    ‘High cost options such as recalling the loan and converting a term loan to an on-call loan are less preferred choices.’
    • ‘Keep your loan on call and simply pay off the 3% minimum each month.’