National Doctors’ Day 2021- committed to ending the COVID-19 pandemic

Doctors’ Day 2020 was somber for not only U.S. doctors, but for physicians all over the world. This year we are approaching the end of the biggest medical foe any of us have ever faced- the novel coronavirus pandemic

National Doctors’ Day

Did you know there is a national day to honor physicians? In 1990, the U.S. Congress established a National Doctors’ Day, first celebrated on March 30, 1991.

The first Doctors’ Day observance was March 30, 1933, in Winder, Georgia. The idea came from a doctor’s wife, Eudora Brown Almond,  and the date was the anniversary of the first use of general anesthetic in surgery.

March 30 is Doctors' Day

Doctors’ Day 2020

Doctors’ Day 2020 was somber for not only U.S. doctors, but for physicians all over the world. Many of our offices were closed, or offering only virtual medicine.

Hospitals cancelled elective procedures. Emergency rooms enacted strict measures in order to treat the growing number of COVID-19 patients while protecting other patients.

After several weeks of fairly strict “lockdowns”, restrictions in multiple states were loosened leading to first gradual then rapid surges in cases, many severe enough to require hospital and ICU admission. And with increased infections, came increased deaths.

an electron microscope image of the coronavirus
used with permission, CDC.GOV


The new year brought a post holiday reprieve, as both cases, hospitalizations, and deaths are steadily decreasing in most parts of the United States. This year we are finally optimistic than the worst is over, that we will see the end of the toughest medical foe any of us have ever faced- the novel coronavirus pandemic.

a female physician talking to a male patient
photo from LIGHTSTOCK.COM, media site

Physicians confront a pandemic

I can’t possibly recognize all the physicians who have labored and sacrificed to prevent and treat COVID-19 infections. This is just a small sampling of ones who made the news; most of them didn’t but their role was no less vital

Paul Lynch, m.d., anesthesia/pain management

Dr. Lynch, a pain management specialist, travelled to New York City early in the pandemic to treat critically ill COVID-19 patients. He caught COVID-19, but after a severe illness, recovered, and returned home to Arizona.

Here is one of several videos he posed to his YouTube channel.

In March of 2019, the Covid-19 Pandemic hit NYC and its’ hospital system like a typhoon. I trained at Bellevue from 2003-2006 in the Anesthesiology department where among other things we managed the ICU. I made the decision to return and help during this crisis.

rebecca shadowen, m.d., Infectious Disease

In her community, Dr. Shadowen was an advocate for public health measures which were not always well received. She died after contracting a severe COVID-19 infection, having continued her advocacy even from her hospital bed.

Rosalind mitchell, m.d., Emergency medicine

Dr. Mitchell’s sister, Dr. Debby Mitchell Burton, a blogger, honored her sister with this Facebook post. Roz, as her family and friends called her, died of COVID-19 complications in January 2021.

doctor talking to a woman
photo compliments American Academy of Family Physicians

Melissa welby, m.d., psychiatrist

With her psychiatric experience, Dr. Welby offered practical advice about managing the stress of the pandemic, especially in the early days when it was all so new and unknown. Such as this post-

How to stay positive during quarantine

Despite the limitations that come with stay-at-home orders, the range of possibilities for entertaining and enjoyable distractions are vast. Although life balance is always important, it is now essential in order to maintain our mental health during and after the pandemic. Let’s have some fun while trying to stay positive during quarantine.

Dr. Melissa Welby
Female doctor looking at an xray

the kudji doctors

This mother-daughter duo made history by graduating from medical school and starting residencies at the same time.

a woman in white coat with mask over mouth

laurent duvernay-tardif, m.d.

Football player and physician don’t usually go together in the same sentence, but for Dr. Duvernay-Tardif they do.

Laurent Duvernay-Tardif refused to choose between earning his MD and playing in the NFL. Today, he’s the first active player who’s also a doctor. At this link you can

Meet the NFL Player Who May Soon Be Your Doctor

“At first I wanted to be an engineer, but after talking with some engineers, I realized there is a lot of computer work, and while I’m a man of science, at the same time I need that human interaction with people,

Medicine is one of the only professions where you get to master the science of things — anatomy, pharmacology, kinesiology — but you also have to interact and communicate with patients from many different cultural and economic backgrounds, and you really have to take into account the social context of each patient in order to come up with the best treatment options.”

Dr. Duvernay-Tardif

your physicians

The most important doctors for you to honor are the ones who helps you, your family, and your community with their health care needs. One way you can honor them is to join them in “sharing the HEART of health” where you live. Some ways you can do this (and you probably already are) include

  • donating to or volunteering at a local food bank
  • assisting with meal delivery to homebound persons
  • fostering and adopting children
  • tutoring students
  • donating to scholarship funds
  • teaching and coaching sports and other physical activities
  • supporting shelters for homeless people
  • helping people effected by natural disasters

Use the comments to tell us what you do and share the impact it has made in the lives of the people who are helped.

Some photos in this post are from the LIGHTSTOCK.COM collection, an affiliate link. Consider Lightstock for your photo and graphic needs. You will get quality media and help support the mission of this blog-to inform and inspire us all to discover the HEART of health.

exploring the HEARTS of physicians

Dr Aletha

March Gladness-not Sadness-in 2021

On March 19, graduating medical students find out what residency program they will join through the National Resident Matching Program , which “matches” them with available positions in residencies all over the United States.

The clocks change, the season changes, physicians’ lives change, athletes compete, and a river turns green. It must be March, and most of us feel more hopeful than we did in March a year ago, as we entered the unknown of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Daylight Saving Time

Most of the United States changed to Daylight Saving Time on Sunday March 14, 2021. Hawaii and Arizona do not (the Navajo reservation in Arizona does.)

The territories of American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands also do not observe DST.

My husband and I enjoying sun, colorful flowers, and cacti in Scottsdale, Arizona.

So if you don’t like changing your clocks, you might consider moving to one of those places.

St. Patrick’s Day

Of course you know that March 17 is St. Patrick’s Day.

The parade in Chicago has been cancelled, as it was last year due to the pandemic, but they revived the tradition of dying the Chicago River green.

My son took this photo a few years ago .  

The Chicago River is green on St. Patrick's Day
photo of the Chicago River dyed green for St. Patrick’s Day by Ryan Oglesby

Welcome Spring

We will welcome the  first day of Spring, March 20,  in the northern hemisphere, with the occurrence of the vernal equinox. I don’t think the virus can stop that, but may make it less enjoyable.

This link to The Weather Channel explains what the vernal equinox means.

graphic of the earth explaining equinox and solstice
original source not known


National Residency Match Day

On March 19, graduating medical students find out what residency program they will enter through the National Resident Matching Program , which “matches” them with available positions in residencies all over the United States.

Why should you care? This matching process determines who will care for our medical needs in the next 30-40 years; our family physicians, internists, pediatricians, general surgeons, obstetricians, dermatologists, psychiatrists, and the multitude of other medical specialties. Most doctors will continue in the same specialty their entire career, although some  switch after a few or many years.

For those graduates who match to a residency, especially if it is their top choice, it is a day for celebrating with family and friends, almost like a graduation. Last year and again this year, most of the celebrating will be done virtually, due to concerns about viral spread. Read more about

Why this year’s Match will be strikingly different


photo from, graphic created with Canva

Read this previous post about the new doctors who will care for you

National Doctor’s Day

March 30 has been designated National Doctor’s Day in the United States. You may not have heard of  a day to honor doctors. The idea came from a doctor’s wife, Eudora Brown Almond, and was first observed on March 30, 1933, in Winder, Georgia.

“Physicians don’t run from challenges. We run toward them.”

Dr. Patrice Harris

In 2020, Dr. Patrice Harris, past president of the AMA wrote this about National Doctor’s Day .

“Physicians display heroism and courage every day in their hospitals and clinics. But today, on National Doctors’ Day, their selflessness in the face of a deepening health crisis is truly extraordinary.

We’ve seen many cases in the U.S and around the globe in which physicians have fallen seriously ill or died after treating patients for COVID-19. The physical toll alone is daunting—extremely long and taxing hours in the hospital—but the emotional toll is just as significant, and enough to overwhelm even the most seasoned and experienced doctor. No one can say for sure how long the health threat will last or how much more our nation’s physicians will be asked to give.

When you ask physicians why they chose their profession, answers vary. But one theme tends to underlie all the responses: a profound commitment to helping others. We are called upon to help in moments like these. As I said in my inaugural address last year—that feels like a lifetime ago—“Physicians don’t run from challenges. We run toward them.” “

March Madness- NCAA basketball tournament

Even people who don’t follow college basketball tune in for March Madness-when college football teams vie to be named the National Champion. Cancelled last year, the tournament will resume this year on March 18, with protocols in place to prevent spread of the virus among the players.

the hands of several people holding a basketball
photo from LIGHTSTOCK.COM, an affiliate link

March 2020

You can reflect on March a year ago at this link

March Sadness-how COVID-19 has changed 2020

In 2020 we’ll be thanking doctors for tackling this new and largely unknown disease that just a few weeks ago we knew little about. Since then we’ve learned it’s name, it’s genetic make up, symptoms, how it spreads, and complications, and slowly learning what does and does not work, and how to contain and stop…


exploring the HEART of health


Dr Aletha

More scenes from Scottsdale Arizona, photos by Dr. Aletha

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