20 Songs About Doctors, Nurses & Medicine

Updated

Doctors, nurses, and caregivers can play very important roles in our lives. In fact, sometimes they can even save our lives. That’s why many can relate to the feeling of wanting to show appreciation for healthcare workers who’ve treated their illnesses.

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Music can help you do so. For decades, musicians across a range of genres have been writing and releasing songs about doctors, nurses, and medicine. They might be useful any time you’re trying to think of smart gifts for doctors. Sending a playlist featuring songs with lyrics that convey your gratitude can be a very meaningful gesture.

If that idea appeals to you, this list of songs about doctors (and healthcare in general) may help you get started!

Rock Songs About Doctors and Nurses

Songs about doctors in the rock genre range from the heartfelt to the tongue-in-cheek. This list includes examples of both, making it easier for you to find the perfect tune.

1. “Somebody Get Me a Doctor” by Van Halen

True, it can be a little difficult to tell precisely why the character in this song needs a doctor, considering how the song describes the feelings of someone who seems to be happy and healthy, but when a tune is as fun to rock to as “Somebody Get Me a Doctor,” overanalyzing the point may actually be the same as missing the point.

2. “A Nurse’s Life is Full of Woe” by Billy Bragg

Sometimes, the best way to show gratitude to a healthcare worker involves acknowledging just how difficult their work is. This song expresses such a sentiment by reminding listeners that being a nurse isn’t easy, and patients should keep this in mind when reacting to the way nurses tend to them.

3. “Bad Case of Loving You (Doctor, Doctor)” by Robert Palmer

True, the doctor this song references may not literally be a healthcare professional, but no list of rock songs about doctors would be complete without this iconic hit. 

4. “My Hero” by Foo Fighters

Many assume Dave Grohl wrote this song about his former bandmate Kurt Cobain. However, according to Grohl himself, he actually dedicated it to the everyday heroes who don’t always get as much recognition as celebrities. This naturally includes doctors and nurses.

5. “The Real Me” by The Who

Getting effective treatment doesn’t need to be the subject of every song about doctors! Consider this example from The Who, in which the lyrics describe the thoughts of a man frustrated because he can’t be certain several figures in his life, including his therapist, understand his true nature. It reflects a feeling many patients often have when starting therapy.

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Pop, Hip-Hop, and R&B Songs About Doctors and Nurses

Rock is by no means the only genre in which artists release songs about doctors. Just consider these examples from the pop, hip-hop, and R&B genres.

6. “The Cure” by Lady Gaga

This song about being sick and hoping to find a cure for one’s medical condition is extremely personal for Lady Gaga. She released it after receiving a diagnosis of fibromyalgia and experiencing pain so great she had to cancel a European tour.

7. “Waterfalls” by TLC

Not all songs about doctors and nurses optimistically describe someone taking proper advantage of the healthcare system. For instance, “Waterfalls” by TLC was such a catchy hit in the ‘90s that many didn’t realize it tells the story of a young man who, despite others offering support, struggles with failing health resulting from addictions and HIV.

8. “Hidden Pain” by A Star feat. Leke

UK rapper A Star released this song to help listeners better understand what people who have sickle cell anemia (a condition A Star has) go through. However, it’s a particularly worthy entry for this list because A Star released it through a partnership with the UK’s National Health Service, highlighting not only how the healthcare system offers support to those with this illness, but how listeners can also help by donating blood.

9. “Hospital” by Counting Crows

Although the hospital this song’s lyrics describe may be a metaphor, the way the lyrics evoke the images and feelings many of us associate with hospitals earns the song a place on this list. And yes, while some might consider Counting Crows to be an alt-rock band, their general appeal overlaps with that of pop musicians. 

10. “I Need a Doctor” by Dr. Dre

Although this song basically uses doctors as metaphors for any person who can reinvigorate our lives when we’re ailing, the metaphor is so prevalent throughout the lyrics that you can still interpret it as an entirely literal song about doctors.

Old Songs About Doctors 

Doctors have been treating patients for millennia. Thus, it likely comes as no surprise that there are plenty of slightly older songs about doctors.

11. “Salute to the Nurses” by Barry Sadler

Barry Sadler wasn’t just a singer/songwriter. He was also a Staff Sergeant in the U.S. military. After seeing the way nurses helped his fellow soldiers in Vietnam without getting the acknowledgment from the public he believed they deserved, Sadler wrote this song in their honor.

12. “You’re My Remedy” by The Marvelettes

As is the case with many songs about doctors and medicine, this one’s lyrics are metaphorical. The Marvelettes may not be singing about actual medicine when they sing about a remedy in this classic tune, but with references to doctors, nurses, and pills in the lyrics, it stands as a shining example of the way talented songwriters can come up with lyrics that touch on one subject on the surface, while also hiding a second meaning in between the lines.

13. “Dr. Feelgood (Love is Serious Business)” by Aretha Franklin

Like the example above, this is another tune that uses references to doctors and pills to explore an affliction that can seem just as troublesome as any illness: being away from the one you love.

14. “Witch Doctor” by David Seville

The doctor in this song might not be the type with an actual medical degree, but if the hopeful character of this old novelty tune is right, this witch doctor still has the power to heal a broken heart by making a woman fall in love with him.

15. “Oh, Doctor Jesus” by Ella Fitzgerald

A gorgeous song equating a religious figure with a doctor is sure to make plenty of physicians understand just how much you might admire them.

Songs About Doctors and Healthcare for Kids

Like all of us, kids also benefit from the help of doctors and nurses. That means, like all of us, kids may enjoy songs about doctors and nurses, including these examples:

16. “My Friend the Doctor” by Leslie Bricusse

This song is from the original Doctor Dolittle soundtrack, so technically, it’s about a fictional doctor who can talk to animals. In other words, not the kind of doctor any child is likely to receive treatment from. That said, with such fun lyrics as “My friend the doctor says the moon is made of apple pie, and once a month it’s eaten by the sun,” it’s unlikely this song’s lack of realism will disappoint a little kid.

17. “Spoonful of Sugar” by Julie Andrews

This classic might just be the first song about medicine anyone who grew up on Disney films remembers hearing. Who knew a song about taking medicine could become so iconic?

18. “A Little Bit Longer” by The Jonas Brothers

Even though you don’t need to be a kid to enjoy The Jonas Brothers’ music, the band’s fans do tend to be on the younger side. Any of those young fans who also have Type 1 diabetes (previously known as juvenile diabetes) may appreciate this song, which Nick Jonas wrote about his struggles with the condition, and his hopes that treatments will improve.

19. “Like a Surgeon” by Weird Al Yankovic

You might not feel this song is entirely appropriate for younger kids, but those reaching their preteen years will likely adore this Weird Al classic, which humorously describes the thoughts of a rookie surgeon who makes more than a few dangerous mistakes on the job.

20. “Chemo Hero” by Dolly Parton

Technically, Dolly Parton wrote this song for her niece, who struggled with leukemia as a child. However, it also qualifies as a song about doctors and healthcare professionals, as it directly addresses the fact that Parton’s niece overcame her illness with their help.

It also acknowledges that sometimes patients may not always enjoy their treatments, and thus can’t always think positively about their doctors when they’re going through them, but that’s only because they’re human. They can look back with a positive perspective later.

Songs About Doctors: A Musical Thank You

Whether you’re making a playlist for a doctor, trying to find lyrics to include in a thank you note for a caregiver, or simply choosing funny tunes for the birthday party of a doctor you know, these are all options worth keeping in mind.

They prove that regardless of your tastes, finding the perfect song about doctors for your goals may be easier than you realized.

If you're looking for more ways to support a doctor in your life, read our guide on how to write a thank you note to a doctor.

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