The U.S. is home to more than 141,000 primary care doctors’ offices. When patients visit these offices, they might be greeted by a medical receptionist and then shown to an exam room by a medical assistant. Depending on the nature of their visit, they may be seen by a technician for X-rays or a nurse for assessments. Then, in about 18 minutes – the average wait time in a doctor’s office – patients will see their physician.

The wait time might grow even longer, though, as medical practices continue to feel the squeeze of staffing shortages. A survey from the Medical Group Management Association finds that staffing remains the biggest challenge for doctors’ offices. More than half of medical offices (58%) have concerns about finding the right staff to assist physicians and help care for patients.

Although November and December tend to be slower months, doctors’ offices are seeing incredible numbers of patients. For example, in 2022, medical personnel handled 1 billion physicians’ office visits, with half of these visits made to primary care physicians. Most doctors see between 11 and 20 patients each day, according to Elation Health, but some see an eye-popping 51 to 60 patients in a day.

When patients arrive at their doctor’s office, they might be seeing more women providers. Women comprise more than half (54%) of the physician workforce, according to Zippia, with females continuing to outnumber males in medical school enrollment.

These physicians often work in private practices, with more than 54% of physicians over age 55 owning their own practice. Companies that sell to healthcare providers, like pharmaceutical, software and medical device companies, can use promo to reach this demographic. Branded items like pens and notepads are perpetually useful in office settings.

RELATED: A Prescription For Promotional Products

Doctors who run their own practices can also turn to promo for their employees and patients. Medical personnel can use items like logoed badge reels and lanyards at work, while promos like branded hand sanitizer or magnets can prove useful to patients.

Whether doctors want to inspire staff members or educate patients, or pharmaceutical companies want to stay top of mind with physicians, promo is a prescription that works.

The Doctor Will See You Now – But Not For Long

Doctors today are facing a major dilemma with a desire to provide high-quality care but not enough time with patients. One study found that 84% of global physicians say they simply don’t have enough hours in the day to properly treat and support their patients.

While they might be limited in their face-to-face interactions, doctors’ offices can still impart useful information through promotional campaigns. For example, medical offices could include a promo magnet or sticker in mailers to remind patients about upcoming appointments or vaccine clinics.

Fight Burnout With Gratitude

Doctors are no strangers to stress. More than half of physicians (53%) say they are burned out, and 23% say they are depressed, according to a 2023 report from Medscape. Some of the top reasons? Doctors say they have to juggle too many bureaucratic tasks, work too many hours and deal with too many unappreciative people.

Showing gratitude is a powerful way to counteract these feelings. Consider giving promo journals and encouraging doctors and other staff members to jot down a few things they’re thankful for every day. Or, give team members promo sticky notes and invite them to write down a few appreciative words for their colleagues.

Consider The Patient’s Perspective

Patients expect more than just quality care when it comes to their healthcare provider. Here’s what matters most, according to the Fourth Annual Benchmark Report from PatientPop:

patient priorities: Available appointments: 62% Prompt response to questions/concerns: 55% Welcoming staff: 53% Good listening: 50% Short wait time: 47% Online access to health records: 41% Flexible hours: 37% Option to book appointments online: 36% Option for telehealth appointment: 23% Ability to pay online: 22%

Pick any of these priorities and build a campaign around it. Want to let patients know the office offers evening or Saturday appointments? Say so with promo.


The telehealth services industry was worth about $29 billion in 2022, growing an average of 35% each year from 2017 to 2022. However, despite the convenience of connecting virtually, most patients now prefer seeing their doctor in person – and physicians feel the same.

A Health Affairs survey reveals that 64% of patients prefer to go into their doctor’s office, and 80% of primary care physicians prefer to conduct in-person visits. With more patients coming through the doors, doctors’ offices can welcome them with promo items like custom pill organizers or branded tissue packs that make functional giveaways while keeping a clinic’s name visible.

Where Have All The Doctors Gone?

By 2034, the United States could be short about 124,000 physicians across all specialties. Data from the Association of American Medical Colleges reveals that 83 million people already live in areas where it can be tough to find a primary care doctor. Both established and new doctors’ offices can use promo to reach out to the community. Consider sponsoring an event or holding an open house and giving logoed items to attendees.

MDs and AI

Artificial intelligence is on its way to many doctors’ offices, but it’s not quite accepted by all. According to Pew Research, 60% of Americans say they don’t want their doctor relying on AI to do things like diagnose diseases or recommend treatments. About 40% believe AI could reduce the number of mistakes made in medicine, but at the expense of patient-doctor relationships.

Whether doctors’ offices use AI or not, promos can help humanize the visit. Logoed items like bottles of sunscreen or hand sanitizer show that doctors care and have their patients’ best interests in mind.

Celebrating Healthcare Professionals All Year Long

Plan promos around these healthcare-related commemorations:

  • January 25: IV Nurses Day
  • February 3: National Women Physicians Day
  • March 30: National Doctors Day
  • April 24-May 1: Transplant Nurses Week
  • May 6: National Nurses Day
  • June 14-20: National Nursing Assistant Week
  • July: Healthy Vision Month
  • August 6-12: National Health Center Week
  • September 11-17: Neonatal Nurses Week
  • October 21: Medical Assistants Recognition Day
  • November 1-7: Medical-Surgical Nurses Week
  • December 23-January 2: Neonatal Nurses Week

Campaign Collateral

MiiR TruEnamel Camp Cup with medical-grade, stainless-steel insulation

Give doctors an upgrade from the single-use cups next to the clinic’s coffee maker. The MiiR TruEnamel Camp Cup features medical-grade, stainless-steel insulation and a press-on, sliding-closure lid. It’s gift-ready in a recycled kraft paper gift box.

Gemline / PPAI 113948, S11 

Motion Sensor Atomizer

Brands can get a visibility boost in doctors’ offices by customizing the Motion Sensor Atomizer. Place this lightweight, portable item at the front desk for patients to use after signing in. It’s touch-free and works for up to 4.5 hours before needing to be recharged.

Starline USA / PPAI 112719, S10

7-Day Pill Case Organizer

Customize the 7-Day Pill Case Organizer for a useful promo gift from physicians’ offices. The plastic case features an embossed letter for each day of the week along with embossed Braille lettering for the vision impaired. Choose from white and blue.

High Caliber Line / PPAI 205801, S10 

Erasable Pen available in seven barrel colors with black ink.

An Erasable Pen comes in handy when patients are completing forms in doctors’ offices. Available in seven barrel colors with a rubberized grip and frosted eraser, these write in black ink.

Empire Pen / PPAI 255936, S3 

Facial Tissue Pocket Packs with 10 tissues tucked inside a logoed sleeve

A practical giveaway from doctors’ offices, the Facial Tissue Pocket Pack includes 10 tissues tucked inside a logoed sleeve. Include additional messaging by customizing the inside top, inside bottom or back of the pack.

HPC Global / PPAI 113506, S3 

Sublimated Mask Lanyard with clips at each end to fasten onto mask

Physicians and other healthcare professionals can keep their masks handy with the Sublimated Mask Lanyard. A clip at each end fastens onto each ear strap of the mask. The lanyard includes a one-color imprint, or opt for a step-and-repeat design.

HPG Brands / PPAI 143213, S7

retractable badge reel with clip

Doctors, nurses and other healthcare personnel may be required to wear role-identifying badges. The Retractable Badge Reel keeps a medical office’s name front and center every time practitioners put it on. Each reel includes a bulldog ID clip and a belt clip on the back.

SnugZ USA / PPAI 112982, S11 

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Inspiration for Nurses (book)

Commemorate National Nurses Week in May or welcome new nurses to a medical office with a customized copy of Chicken Soup for the Soul: Inspiration for Nurses (101 Stories of Appreciation and Wisdom).

The Book Company / PPAI 218850, S5