Nurses play an essential role in keeping patients and communities healthy. Working long hours on their feet and expending emotional energy like nurses do daily takes a special type of person. Not only are nurses frontline heroes, but they're also unsung heroes. Once every year, nurses receive recognition through nurse appreciation day and nurse appreciation week, known as National Nurses Week—but you don't have to wait until that special occasion to celebrate nurses.
Whether a nurse has supported you through medical recovery, helped your family navigate the healthcare system, or contributed to your community through education and advocacy, you may want to thank them for their efforts by giving a nurse appreciation gift. One way to show your gratitude is by giving them a thoughtful gift that recognizes their contributions and makes their job easier or more comfortable.
In this blog post, we'll share some of the top thank-you gifts for nurses to show them how much you value their hard work and dedication. No matter your budget or time constraints, we've got you covered with some great ideas that will surely put a smile on any nurse's face.
What Is a Good Thank You Gift for Nursing Staff?
The below list is a compilation of some of our favorite nurse appreciation gifts, including scrubs, stethoscopes, and chocolate. What more could a nurse want?
- Blue light-blocking glasses help nurses reduce eye strain if they spend a lot of time looking at screens.
- Sleep eye masks can be a game-changer for night-shift nurses who struggle to sleep during the day.
- Some nurses run on caffeine and would appreciate a lovely coffee mug or insulated cup.
- AWAKE caffeinated chocolates are an excellent alternative to coffee and energy drinks for nurses.
- A portable oven allows shift nurses to cook or reheat healthy meals for long shifts.
- A good water bottle helps keep nurses hydrated throughout their work shifts.
- Badge clips can help nurses personalize and add character to their nursing scrubs.
- Boxed baked treats from a local cafe are a great little thank-you gift that can be shared among nurses.
- Detox bath salts with magnesium are an excellent gift for nurses to aid in relaxation and reduce muscle aches after long days on their feet. You can also gift self-care items that are packaged for nurses.
- Nurses can never have too many scrubs, so a new scrub set will be put to good use.
- For spiritual nurses, 101 Blessing for Nurses provides inspirational quotes and affirmations tailored to nurses.
- Nurse compression socks help boost blood circulation for nurses that spend most of their shift on their feet. This is also a great gift for travel nurses or humanitarian nurses who often fly for work.
- Nursing equipment such as a stethoscope, a stethoscope carry case, personal protective equipment, and accessories such as mask extenders/clips will also be put to good use.
- For nursing students, consider gifting nursing study resources such as the nursing.com bundle, which comes with videos, cheat sheets, practice questions, and more for those in nursing school or studying for the NCLEX exam.
What Gifts Do Nurses Really Want?
What better way to know what to gift a nurse than to hear from nurses themselves? The following appreciation gift ideas for nurses are offered by nurses themselves. Check out the suggestions below for a range of options.
- "My patients who thank me mean the world to me. Sure, buying us snacks, lunch or coffee is always, always appreciated, but just saying 'thank you' or writing a note means a lot." - Kim W.
- "As amazing as it is to have recognition for what we do, I'm not asking for cake or cookies or pizza. I am asking for patients to be more accepting, understanding and aware." - Taylor J.
- "I can tell you some of my most memorable moments have been when a parent shakes my hand or gives me a hug (pre-COVID times) and just says 'Thank you for taking care of my child.'" - Sarah F.
- Emily B says coffee is always a welcome gift—whether it’s a large traveler box or taking specific orders from nurses—and adds that you can’t go wrong with doughnuts.
- Brenna O suggests that meals from local restaurants are a great gift for nurses.
- Emily D shares that during nurse appreciation week, a patient hired a masseur to give nurses ten-minute neck massages—a welcome relief!
Final Thoughts | How Do You Say Thank You to Nurses?
At Nursa, we know that gifts are a love language, so we've compiled several gift guides for the nurse in your life. We also have themed gift guides, so if you're looking for Christmas gifts for nurses, Valentine's Day gifts for nurses, or Easter gift ideas for nurses, we've got you covered.
Remember that some hospitals do not permit nurses to accept monetary gifts. Sometimes this also applies to gift cards, so be sure to ask a staff member at the hospital before gifting a nurse something they may be unable to accept.
Often, the best thing you can gift a nurse is your sincere appreciation for their work. The smallest gestures can make the most significant difference to a nurse who is exhausted after a long shift—so be sure to express your gratitude.