National Doctors' Day

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National Doctors' Day
National Doctors' Day
Observed byVarious countries
SignificanceTo recognize the contributions of physicians to individual lives and communities.
DateVaries with the country

National Doctors' Day is a day celebrated to recognize the contributions of physicians to individual lives and communities. The date varies from nation to nation depending on the event of commemoration used to mark the day. In some nations the day is marked as a holiday. Although supposed to be celebrated by patients in and benefactors of the healthcare industry, it is usually celebrated by health care organizations. Staff may organize a lunch for doctors during which physicians are presented with tokens of recognition. Historically, a card or red carnation may be sent to physicians and their spouses, along with a flower being placed on the graves of deceased physicians.

Celebrating nations[edit]

Details of celebrations and dates of celebrations of the national Doctor's Day
Country Date Details
Australia March 30 There are various dates on which National Doctor’s Day may be recognized, the most participated being the 30th of March.[1][2][3]
Brazil October 18 National Doctors' Day is celebrated as a holiday on October 18, the day on which the Catholic Church celebrates the birthday of Saint Luke. According to the Church Tradition the apostle and Evangelist Saint Luke was a doctor, as it is written in the New Testament (Colossians 4:14).[4]
Canada May 1 National Physicians' Day is celebrated on May 1. The date was chosen by the Canadian Medical Association in recognition of Dr. Emily Stowe, the first female physician to practice in Canada.[5] Senate Public Bill S-248 would have officially recognised the day,[6] but died on the order paper following the 2019 Canadian Federal Election.
China August 19 Chinese Doctor's Day [zh] is celebrated as a national holiday on August 19 annually. The date was selected by the National Health and Family Planning Commission of the People's Republic of China (PRC) in the 2016 National Health and Wellness Conference of China and was approved by in State Council of the PRC on November 20, 2017.[7] The significance of Chinese Doctor's Day is to recognize the great contributions of Chinese doctors to their community and society, encourage the health workers to positively advocate the noble spirit of ‘respect for life, heal the wounded and save the dying, be willing to contribute, and love without boundaries', and further promote the development of a harmony atmosphere of respect for doctors in the whole society, and accelerate the in-depth implementation of the Healthy China strategy.[8]
Cuba December 3 National Doctors' Day is celebrated as a holiday and commemorates the birthday of Carlos Juan Finlay (December 3, 1833 – August 6, 1915). He was a Cuban physician and scientist recognized as a pioneer in yellow fever research.[9] He was the first to theorize, in 1881, that a mosquito was a carrier, now known as a disease vector, of the organism causing yellow fever: a mosquito that bites a victim of the disease could subsequently bite and thereby infect a healthy person. A year later Finlay identified a mosquito of the genus Aedes as the organism transmitting yellow fever. His theory was followed by the recommendation to control the mosquito population as a way to control the spread of the sickness.[10]
Ecuador February 21 The date honors Eugenio Espejo, the first Ecuadorian doctor, born on February 21, 1747.
El Salvador July 14 Starting in 1969, National Doctor's Day has been celebrated, as per legislative decree,[11] on July 14 to commemorate the day the College of Physicians of El Salvador was founded (July 14, 1943).[12]
India July 1 All across the country[13] National Doctors' Day is celebrated on July 1 in memory of Dr. Bidhan Chandra Roy, physician and the second Chief Minister of West Bengal.[14] He was born on July 1, 1882, and died on the same date in 1962.
Indonesia October 24 Hari Dokter Nasional or National Doctor's Day. The day is also marked by the birthday celebration of the Indonesian Doctors Association (IDI).[15]
Iran August 23 Avicenna's birthday (Iranian date: Shahrivar 1st) is commemorated as the national day for doctors.[16][17]
Israel January 11 The date of January 11th marks the day in the year 1912 when a small group of Jewish doctors gathered in Tel-Aviv in Ottoman Palestine to found the Hebrew Medicinal Society for Jaffa and the Jaffa District, which eventually helped form the Israel Medical Association.[18]
Kuwait March 3 The idea of this celebration came for the Kuwaiti businesswoman Zahra Sulaiman Al-Moussawi. The date was chosen due to it being the birthday of Dr Sundus Al-Mazidi, her daughter.[19]
Malaysia October 10 Doctors Day is celebrated on the 10th of October every year according to Dr Kanagasabai. N. First launched by the Federation of Private Medical Practitioners Associations, Malaysia in 2014.[20]
Nepal March 4 (Nepali date Falgun 20). Since the establishment of the Nepal Medical Association, Nepal has organized this day every year. The doctor-patient communication, clinical treatment, and community-based health promotion and care is discussed.[21]
South Africa November 16 National Doctor's Day is celebrated every year in South Africa since 2018. Doctors’ Day is a commemorative day to acknowledge the value that doctors bring to the lives of South Africans, and to thank them for it. Doctors in South Africa are considered a national asset. The public is encouraged to show their appreciation to the dedicated and compassionate healthcare heroes who work tirelessly to safeguard South Africa's well-being.
Turkey March 14 Has been celebrated as Medicine Day every year since 1919.[22]
Ukraine July, 27 The Medical Workers Day (Ukrainian: День медичних працівників, Den' medychnykh pratsivnykiv) is a professional holiday of medical staff.[23]
United States March 30 National Doctors' Day is a day on which the service of physicians to the nation is recognized annually. The idea came from Eudora Brown Almond, wife of Dr. Charles B. Almond, and the date chosen was the anniversary of the first use of general anesthesia in surgery. On March 30, 1842,[24] in Jefferson, Georgia, Dr. Crawford Long used ether to anesthetize a patient, James Venable, and painlessly excised a tumor from his neck.[25]
Vietnam February 27 Doctor's Day was founded on February 28, 1955. The day is celebrated on February 27 or sometimes dates closest to this date.[26]
Venezuela March 10 Doctor's Day. This date was chosen to honor José María Vargas, who was not only an outstanding physician but also a President of the Republic of Venezuela.


The first Doctors’ Day observance was March 28, 1933, in Winder, Georgia, United States. This first observance included the mailing of cards to the physicians and their wives, flowers placed on graves of deceased doctors, including Dr. Long, and a formal dinner in the home of Dr. and Mrs. William T. Randolph. After the Barrow County Alliance adopted Mrs. Almond's resolution to pay tribute to the doctors, the plan was presented to the Georgia State Medical Alliance in 1933 by Mrs. E. R. Harris of Winder, president of the Barrow County Alliance.[27] On May 10, 1934, the resolution was adopted at the annual state meeting in Augusta, Georgia. The resolution was introduced to the Women's Alliance of the Southern Medical Association at its 29th annual meeting held in St. Louis, Missouri, November 19–22, 1935, by the Alliance president, Mrs. J. Bonar White. Since then, Doctors' Day has become an integral part of and synonymous with, the Southern Medical Association Alliance.

The United States Senate and House of Representatives passed S.J. RES. #366 during the 101st United States Congress, which President Bush signed on October 30, 1990 (creating Public Law 101-473), designating Doctors' Day as a national holiday to be celebrated on March 30.[28][29]

Dr. Marion Mass along with Dr. Kimberly Jackson and Dr. Christina Lang applied to officially have physicians day changed to physicians week. This was accepted in March 2017.

In 2017 Physicians Working Together (PWT, founded by Dr. Kimberly Jackson) sponsored a series of articles in celebration of National Physicians week that were hosted on KevinMD.[30] In 2018 PWT along with Openxmed sponsored a free online conference focusing on physician well being and advocacy. In 2019, PWT and Openxmed sponsored a scholarship program for medical students and residents. The week long event focuses on advocacy and supporting the physician community.


  1. ^ Metro South Hospital and Health Service, The State of Queensland (2018-03-14). "Doctors' Day honours valuable contributions". Retrieved 2019-08-31.
  2. ^ "Happy Doctors Day". Healthcare Australia. Retrieved 2019-08-31.
  3. ^ "Doctors' Day". Days Of The Year. Retrieved 2019-08-31.
  4. ^ "National Doctors' Day 2020: Why India Celebrates Doctors on July 1 and the Theme for This Year". News18. 2020-06-30. Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  5. ^ "Recognizing the work of the medical profession: CMA to celebrate National Physicians' Day on May 1". Canadian Medical Association. Retrieved 31 March 2020.
  6. ^ "LEGISinfo - Senate Public Bill S-248 (42-1)". Parliament of Canada. Retrieved 31 March 2020.
  7. ^ "国务院关于同意设立"中国医师节"的批复". 国家卫生计生委办公厅网站. 2017-11-20.
  8. ^ "每年8月19日设立为"中国医师节"". XinhuaNet. 新华社.
  9. ^ "The United States Army Yellow Fever Commission Headed by Walter Reed – U.S. Army Yellow Fever Commission". U.S. Army Yellow Fever Commission. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  10. ^ "National Doctor's Day 2020: Theme, History and Objectives". 2020-07-01. Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  11. ^ "Asamblea Legislativa - República de El Salvador, Decreto #39 1968" (PDF).
  12. ^ "Historia Colegio Médico de El Salvador".
  13. ^ "National Doctor's Day 2021 India: Date, Theme, Quotes, Significance". S A NEWS. 2020-07-01. Retrieved 2021-07-01.
  14. ^ "National Doctors' Day: Here's what you should know about Dr BC Roy". Firstpost. 1 July 2016. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  15. ^ "Anies Baswedan on National Doctor's Day: Thanks for Sincere Dedication of Doctors in Indonesia". Netral News. Retrieved 24 October 2020.
  16. ^ "Iran commemorates Natˈl Doctors Day on Avicenna's birth anniv". Islamic Republic News Agency – IRNA. 23 August 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  17. ^ "Iran marks National Doctors Day to commemorate Avicenna". Mehr News Agency (MNA). 23 August 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  18. ^ "Historical Background". Retrieved 2024-01-11.
  19. ^ "National Doctor's Day 2020: Health workers combating stress, sleep disorders and COVID-19 together, says casualty ward doctor - Health News , Firstpost". Firstpost. 2020-07-01. Retrieved 2020-07-01.
  20. ^ "FPMPAM inaugural Doctors Day".
  21. ^ "National Doctors' Day - Southern Medical Association". Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  23. ^
  24. ^ "DOCTORS' DAY - March 30, 2020". National Today. 2020-03-30. Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  25. ^ Long, C. W. (December 1991). "An Account of the First Use of Sulphuric Ether by Inhalation as an Anæsthetic in Surgical Operations". Survey of Anesthesiology. 35 (6): 375. doi:10.1097/00132586-199112000-00049.
  26. ^ Archived 2016-03-04 at the Wayback Machine DTU Celebrates the 57th Anniversary of Vietnam Doctors’ Day
  27. ^ "History of Doctors' Day". Hallmark Ideas & Inspiration. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  28. ^ Archived 2013-10-06 at the Wayback Machine retrieved 1 July 2014
  29. ^ "S.J.Res.366 – A joint resolution to designate March 30, 1991, as "National Doctors Day"". 1990-10-30.
  30. ^ "NATIONAL PHYSICIANS WEEK - March 25–31". National Day Calendar. Retrieved 2021-07-01.

External links[edit]