About National Doctors Day
National Doctor’s Day is celebrated on March 30th. Since 1933, this day has been set aside to honor physicians, and in 1958, National Doctor’s Day was declared a national holiday by Congress. Historically, doctors were given a red carnation in thanks for their service and contributions to the community.
It is a day to honor physicians for the work they do for their patients, the communities they work in, and for society as a whole.
History of Doctor's Day
Doctor’s Day can be traced back to March 30th, 1933, when it was first observed in Winder, Georgia. Originally started by Eudora Brown Almond, the wife of a prominent Georgian doctor, who wanted to create a day just for recognizing and honoring doctors; she decided the best way to do that was to mail greeting cards to all of the doctors she knew of and to place flowers on the graves of deceased physicians. The flowers that she placed on the graves of these doctors were red carnations – a flower that is still used to this day for National Doctor’s Day celebrations.
Mrs. Almond chose March 30th as the date for Doctor’s Day as that day is when Dr. Crawford W. Long first used an ether anaesthetic during surgery in 1842. It took until 1991 before Doctor’s Day became a National holiday when Congress passed Proclamation 6253.
Doctors’ Day was unofficially celebrated for many years before it became a legal holiday. On March 30th 1958, the U.S. House of Representatives adopted a resolution that commemorates Doctors’ Day, and on October 30th 1990, George W. Bush signed the legislature after approval from both the House and the Senate.
Did you know?
- 700,000 – the estimated number of doctors in the U.S.
- 2003 – the year when Hallmark started printing cards for Doctors’ Day.
- 21% – the percentage of doctors whose spouse is also a doctor.
- 60 hours – the estimated number of hours worked per week by a doctor.