19 Gifts for Health Care Workers to Show Your Appreciation After a Busy Year

From meal subscriptions to comfy kicks, these gifts will make their lives easier on and off shift.
By Braelyn Wood
December 10, 2020
Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

Health care workers should always be at the top of the nice list for their devotion to helping others—but the coronavirus pandemic put into perspective just how essential nurses, doctors, aids, and lab technicians really are. That’s why it’s more important than ever to give thanks to the health care workers in our lives with thoughtful (and useful) gifts that show our appreciation. 

Of course, we know giving the perfect present is better said than done. Instead of spending hours searching for a considerate pick, scroll through our list of 19 gifts for health care workers to find something they’ll actually want to unwrap this holiday season.

Credit: Amazon

Buy It, $60

Nothing soothes exhausted muscles quite like a deep-tissue massage—and this heated shiatsu massager is the next best thing to an in-person appointment. Its hands-free design hangs over the shoulders and delivers a relaxing treatment through 8 heated massage nodes, so it can be worn while watching Netflix or scrolling through IG after a long shift.

Credit: Amazon

Buy It, $420

The last thing anyone wants to do after a long workday is clean, especially when it’s a 12-hour shift. This robot vacuum knocks one chore off the list by sucking up dirt, dust, and pet hair on both carpet and hardwood floors. Its smart design even connects to an app through Wi-Fi, so it’s possible to control the schedule and suction power on a smartphone, as well as drawing no-vacuum zones and advance cleaning areas for bigger messes.

Credit: Amazon

Buy It, $15

This sleek case gives health care workers a convenient way to store their stethoscope throughout the day. Available in 12 colorways, its interior is lined with a soft microfiber to pad against falls with two mesh pockets to maximize storage for additional instruments. It’s the perfect thoughtful, yet budget-friendly option.

Credit: Purple

Buy It, $109

Long hours are the name of the game for health care workers, so when it’s time to snooze they need all the help they can get. This science-backed pillow delivers just the right amount of support and comfort for maximizing Zzzs. Bonus point: The cooling pick has also been the solution for hundreds of shoppers with neck pain.

Credit: Amazon

Buy It, $179 (was $199)

A smartwatch is an easy way for doctors or nurses to stay connected to the outside world during a busy shift without needing to constantly check their phones. With a waterproof design, optical heart sensor, and built-in GPS, the Apple Watch Series 3 is the perfect pick.  

Credit: Amazon

Buy It, $25

It’s impossible to have too many scrubs, especially when you factor in spills and sporadic laundry schedules. A gift as practical as socks, this comfy scrub set comes in over 23 colors, including a sleek black and eggplant purple. Not to mention, it’s already a favorite of almost 6,700 shoppers, including nurses, homes aides, and certified nursing assistants.

Credit: hungryroot

Buy It, from $59 per delivery

Keep their fridge stocked with healthy ingredients that can be prepared into a nutritious meal in 15 minutes or less with Hungryroot’s meal service. It drops a delivery of plant-based products right to their doorstep with recipes to create delicious breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Not to mention, it includes add-on options for snacks and desserts that’ll satisfy mid- or post-shift cravings.

Credit: Amazon

Buy It, from $47

Whether it’s struggling to keep water ice-cold or coffee piping hot during a busy workday, this Hydro Flask will be the perfect solution. The double-walled stainless steel bottle is a fan favorite between its no-slip finish, wide-mouth design, and color options.

Credit: Winc

Buy It, $60

A Winc delivery brings a curated selection of 4 wine bottles right to their front door for a night of guaranteed relaxation. A one-month subscription allows them to input their personal tastes and preferences for a box that suits their taste buds—and your wallet.

Credit: Amazon

Buy It, $29

Hand cream offers much-need relief from the dry, cracked skin that comes with constant washing. This nurse-approved pick is packed with ingredients like shea butter, vitamin E, and coconut oil that both restore moisture and protect against future damage. 

Credit: Amazon

Buy It, $60 (was $100)

The Instant Pot lets users speed up the cooking process with pressure settings or slowly it way down with the slow cooker function. Either way, it promises a low-maintenance meal for up to 6 people. Not to mention, it’s also a rice cooker, yogurt maker, and steamer to help reduce the number of pots and pans needing washing.

Credit: Bloomscape

Buy It, $65

Health care workers won’t be around enough to appreciate a beautiful bouquet, so a plant is the ideal alternative. This trio set includes a variety of durable options that require minimal care, like a ZZ Plant. Shipped in matching pots and ready for low-light areas, they’re the perfect gift right out of the box.

Credit: Amazon

Buy It, $9

A guaranteed laugh for the overworked nurse in your life, this R-rated coloring book is filled with snarky sayings. As the name suggests, it features a lot of F-bombs and other curse words, but for many content buyers that’s most of the fun.

Buy It, from $23

Night shift workers will be overjoyed to receive these insulated curtains. Not only will they snooze better with less light, but they’ll also save on electricity with the thermo-regulating design. Plus, they come in 24 different colors to match a range of decor.

Credit: Comrad Socks

Buy It, $29

Compression socks counteract the swelling caused by poor circulation after a long shift—but most are pretty darn uncomfortable. Comrad decided to fix that by creating a sock that’s equal parts compression and comfort. It also has a cushioned footbed, contoured design, and silver-infused technology to prevent odors. Opt for the knee-high pick for extra compression (and better protection during spills). 

Credit: Amazon

Buy It, $300

Help your favorite health care worker block out the buzz of the real world with a pair of noise-cancelling headphones. Ideal for sleeping in the on-call room or listening to a meditation after work, these wireless headphones will give a moment of peace in a job filled with chaos.

Credit: Vionic

Buy It, $47

Workers in the medical field spend most of their shifts on their feet, which makes pair of comfy shoes extra important. Reviewers say these shoes provide plenty of support but are still lightweight. Plus, they have built-in orthotics designed by a podiatrist.  

Credit: Casper

Buy It, $161 (was $179)

A weighted blanket can help users fall asleep faster and sleep better, making it a great gift for anyone behind on sleep. Casper’s luxurious design is constructed for airflow and comfort with a chic design bound to look good on any bedspread. Shop the blanket in 10-, 15-, and 20-pound weights.

Credit: Nutribullet

Buy It, $90

This high-speed blender makes a nutrient-packed smoothie in under 60 seconds for the perfect portable single portion breakfast. Its design is so simple, you won’t have to be a doctor to use it (well, they might be). Simply twist on the 32-ounce cup filled with greens, fruits, and liquid and let the blending begin. (P.S. It’s 20% off right now with the code HOLIDAYCHEER.)

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