With our country’s healthcare system becoming more and more impersonal with each passing day, it’s easy to understand why a patient who has a positive experience with their doctor would want to show their gratitude with a thank you gift.
But even with the best of intentions, accepting gifts from patients is tricky territory for most docs.
An extravagant gift from a patient is likely to make doctor uncomfortable, for a number of reasons. But if they decline to accept a gift, the physician also risks offending their patient. Either way, this is a difficult situation to maneuver and risks putting the patient-physician relationship in jeopardy.
The best way to say thank you to your physician? Just say thank you!
And one of the most sincere ways to express this sentiment is through a handwritten card. Now you can even have someone write and deliver the card for you (free of charge) with your own personal message – the genius of this service is that they also include a discount code for scrubs, lab coats, and stethoscope (all things your physician likely uses every day) so that you can still feel like you’re giving a gift, but also be confident you’re within the boundaries of what is appropriate.
Those of us who became physicians know that we did it not for the praise or the accolades, not even the handsome salary. And let’s be real: if money were our primary objective, there are far easier, faster, and cheaper ways to accomplish that goal than to become a doctor.
The truth is that most doctors chose this path because we want to use our skills to help other people. We don’t ask for nor expect a thank you gift – our gift is the privilege of healing patients, families, and communities through our work.