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Tennessee Physicians Celebrate National Doctors’ Day
State and Local Medical Societies Recognize Members’ Unique Service

March 29, 2023

Nashville, TN — March 30 is National Doctors’ Day, and the Tennessee Medical Association, along with the state’s largest medical societies, acknowledges the service of more than 9,500 members who uphold rigid professional standards of dedication, ethics, sacrifice and a genuine commitment to patients’ well-being.

Local component medical societies throughout the state have planned activities to recognize their physicians. The Chattanooga and Hamilton County Medical Society recognized 10 local physicians nominated by their patients for doing great work in medicine.

TMA will also take part in a 2023 National Doctors’ Day observance on Capitol Hill on March 30 in Washington, D.C. as a co-organizer with the Iowa Medical Society, Medical Association of Georgia, North Carolina Medical Society and Ohio State Medical Association. The free event will feature multiple congressional speakers including several physicians elected to office.

“As we look forward to the official end of the Covid-19 pandemic, let us all reflect on the cost to physicians and other health workers over the last three years,” said TMA President Edward Capparelli, MD. “Hospital beds have been filled to overflowing. Physicians have worked tirelessly to care for sick and dying patients. Some have even paid the ultimate price losing their lives to Covid-19. This year, more than ever, we owe a debt of gratitude to all physicians for their outstanding work on behalf of patients and the profession.”

The first Doctors’ Day observance was March 30, 1933 in Winder, Ga., on the anniversary of the first use of general anesthetic in surgery. On March 30, 1842, Crawford Long, MD of Barrow County, Ga. used ether to remove a tumor from a patient’s neck. The Barrow County Medical Society Auxiliary proclaimed the day “Doctors’ Day” and celebrated by mailing cards to physicians and their wives and by placing flowers on the graves of deceased doctors, including Dr. Long.

The U.S. House of Representatives adopted a resolution commemorating Doctors’ Day on March 30, 1958. President George H. W. Bush signed Senate Joint Resolution 366 designating the first official National Doctor’s Day in 1991 (Public Law 101-473). Much has changed in the ensuing years for physicians keeping up with sweeping changes in the U.S. healthcare system, but one particular excerpt from the resolution still very much applies and is worth revisiting on this day:

“Common to the experience of each of them, from the specialist in research to the general practitioner, are hard work, stress, and sacrifice. All those Americans who serve as licensed physicians have engaged in years of study and training, often at great financial cost. Most endure long and unpredictable hours, and many must cope with the conflicting demands of work and family life.”

TMA commends all Tennessee physicians for their service, and acknowledges the many personal sacrifices they make to meet the demands of their chosen profession.

Tennessee’s physicians not only administer patient care but also fulfill a vital role in the state’s economy, supporting nearly 176,000 jobs and generating $29.1 billion in economic activity, according to a 2018 report released by TMA and the American Medical Association.

The mission of the Tennessee Medical Association is to enhance the effectiveness of physicians throughout the state and protect the health interests of patients by defining and promoting quality, safe and effective medical care, protecting the sanctity of the physician-patient relationship, improving access to and the affordability of quality medical services, upholding ethics and competence in medical education and practice, and fostering open communication between the medical profession and the public.