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Doctor’s Note

written by Leah McCabe Written by Leah McCabe
Leah McCabe

Leah McCabe

Leah likes writing about health and science subjects. Through her writing she hopes to help people of all backgrounds have equal access to information and quality healthcare.

Read more posts by this author.
reviewed by Dr. Katalin Karolyi Reviewed by Dr. Katalin Karolyi
Dr. Katalin Karolyi

Dr. Katalin Karolyi

Katalin Karolyi, M.D. earned her medical degree at the University of Debrecen. After completing her residency program in pathology at the Kenezy Hospital, she obtained a postdoctoral position at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute, Orlando, Florida.

March 24, 2022 Read Time - 8 minutes

Get a Doctor’s Note

We all need a doctor’s note at some point in our lives when medical conditions interfere with our other responsibilities.

At times you may have wondered, how can I get a doctor’s note?

In some cases, the hassle of setting up an appointment, traveling to the office, and asking for a physical note just seems like too much effort, especially when you’re feeling sick.

For some, this kind of effort may make it not worth getting the note, or even impossible if your doctor doesn’t have an appointment available.

If you’ve ever experienced this dilemma, you’re not alone. Minor medical conditions that might not otherwise be worth the effort or cost for a note place you in the difficult position of deciding between your health, and your commitments. Fortunately, PlushCare is here to help.

You can talk to an online doctor and get a doctor’s note through PlushCare. Our board-certified physicians are highly trained and can diagnose your condition and prescribe any necessary medications

Do You Have To Pay For A Doctor’s Note?

Doctor’s notes are a free accommodation provided you pay to receive medical care.

At PlushCare, the average insured patient pays less than $25. We also accept uninsured patients for $129 an Our patients with in-network insurance typically pay $30 for a doctor visit online. We also accept uninsured and self-pay members for $129 per new patient visit and $69 for follow-ups.

PlushCare provides the medical treatment you need from your own home, and even gets you a primary or urgent care doctor’s note when you need one.

Appointments as low as $20.

Use our cost checker to see what you'll pay

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What is a Doctor’s Note?

A doctor’s note, otherwise known as a doctor’s excuse, is a piece of paper received from a medical professional to prove that you saw a doctor.

It is a legal document produced either directly by the doctor or their office administration that affirms you had an appointment.

Forging such a document by using a doctor’s note template is illegal and unethical. However, it is not uncommon for people to try to use a fake doctor’s note to get out of commitments at school or work.

For some, you might even be showing symptoms but are unable to make an appointment in time to justify your absence. Whatever the case, a real doctor’s note is always the smart option. Luckily now, it’s the easy choice too!

Getting a doctor’s note from an online doctor is the same as getting a note from an in-person doctor.

How to Get a Doctor’s Note

With PlushCare, you can get a doctor’s note online. Our doctors conduct virtual appointments across the United States via telephone or video calls for any number of medical conditions.

Here is a step-by-step overview of how you can get a doctor’s note with PlushCare:

  • First, schedule a virtual doctor’s appointment at a time that is convenient for you on the PlushCare mobile app or website.
  • Then, meet with your doctor online at your scheduled time. A board-certified physician from one of the top 50 U.S. medical schools will listen to you and answer your questions you may have.
  • Our trusted medical professionals can examine your symptoms, give a diagnosis, and write you any necessary prescriptions or treatment plans, along with a doctor’s note.

When to Get a Note From Your Doctor

You should get a doctor’s note when you have a condition or appointment that will interfere with your ability to attend work or school normally. 

This may include:

  • Illness
  • Injury 
  • Extended absence 

Common Conditions Doctors Write Notes For

Doctor’s Note For Contagious Illness

If you are contagious, it is your responsibility to protect the health of your coworkers and customers by staying home, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. If you are experiencing symptoms resembling COVID-19, it is advisable for you to see a doctor and get a doctor’s note to be excused from work or school. This is because COVID-19 is a highly contagious illness, and being excused will provide you with the needed time to recover while keeping others safe.

Returning to work once you’re better will mean you are more productive and efficient in your job. Further, getting those around you sick only hurts the output of the whole workplace. Thus, getting an official doctor’s note for missing work will help maintain the health and well-being of yourself and your co-workers.

Some common illnesses include:

Doctor’s Note For Injury

Most workplaces consider an injury that inhibits your ability to perform your job reasonably to be an appropriate need for sick leave. Supervisors usually prefer their employees to be working efficiently, rather than dragging out the length of an injury and working below capacity all the while. 

Doctor’s Note for Medical Appointment

Some workplaces allow you to use sick days to attend doctor appointments. This healthy habit prepares you to maintain proper health and reduces your likelihood of needing sick leave in the future. 

Doctor’s Note for Diagnosed Medical Condition

Make sure to notify the human resources department when you start a new job about any pre-existing medical conditions you may have. If you require regular appointments of scheduled rest time, provide your employer with proper documentation from a medical professional.

Doctor’s Note For Hospitalization

If your condition requires hospitalization or treatment by a medical professional, you can use sick days to cover your absences. Discuss your extended leave options with your human resources department.

Doctor’s Note For Pregnancy or Delivery

Pregnancy and delivery are usually covered by the Family and Medical Leave Act to provide coverage for work days missed due to pregnancy-related reasons. Your employer may also have a policy related to prenatal care and paternal leave.

Doctor’s Note for School

If you have a contagious illness or a condition that affects your ability to attend school, you can request a doctor’s note for school from one of our doctors. After you are diagnosed by a physician, if they see that it’s necessary, they can write you a doctor’s note for school.

Doctor’s Note for Remote Work

If you have a medical condition that increases your risk of a severe illness from COVID-19 and need to request accommodation in order to continue working remotely, you may be able to submit a doctor’s note to your employer. Review your company’s guidelines or talk to your HR representative to learn more.

Extended Medical Leave and Doctors’ Notes

If you will be missing work for an extended period of time, such as more than one week, you typically need to provide an official doctor’s note to your employer. Having a note will allow you to be covered by the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) while you are on leave.

You should know that, due to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), the doctor is not allowed to specify your diagnosis in the note unless you provide permission. The doctor still may have to include scheduled treatment dates that interfere with your ability to be at work. Review your company’s extended medical leave policy to learn more.

What Does a Doctor’s Note Need to Say?

A doctor’s note needs to include the following information:

  • The date when you had your doctor’s appointment
  • The medical reason why you had to miss work
  • If any time of absence from work is required

Doctor’s Note Template

To get a legitimate doctor’s note, you must speak with a doctor. If you are wondering what a doctor’s note looks like, here is an example template that shows the typical format of a note.

Doctor's Note

Now that you know what a doctor’s note looks like, you can schedule an appointment to get a real doctor’s note.

Filling out a doctor’s note template with false information or forging a doctor’s signature is unethical and illegal. Think twice before forging a doctor’s note, there are serious consequences. PlushCare makes getting a real doctor’s note even more convenient than faking a note, while eliminating the risks.

  • Book on our free mobile app or website.

    Our doctors operate in all 50 states and same day appointments are available every 15 minutes.

  • See a doctor, get treatment and a prescription at your local pharmacy.

  • Use your health insurance just like you normally would to see your doctor.


What is the Role of a Doctor’s Note For Work?

A doctor’s note for work performs three critical tasks.

  • It verifies the necessity of your visit
  • Recommends the length of absence necessary
  • Mentions any special accommodations you may need in order to return to work

How Do I Get a Doctor’s Note from PlushCare?

All PlushCare doctors are highly qualified and experienced to provide online diagnoses and treatment for telehealth patients. 

To get a doctor’s note from PlushCare, you would start by making an appointment with an online PlushCare doctor. During your video or phone appointment, the doctor will help review your symptoms, medical history, and current medications. If the doctor deems a note to be medically necessary, then they will send you a doctor’s note.

PlushCare is HIPAA-compliant; we value your privacy and use secure electronic record systems to keep your personal health information safe.

Just click here to make an appointment and receive a doctor’s note for work, school, or any other commitments in your life. Our nationwide doctors commonly write doctor’s notes for all types of conditions and 97% of conditions are successfully treated on the first visit.

Read More About How an Online Doctor Can Help You


PlushCare is dedicated to providing you with accurate and trustworthy health information. Patients Perception of Doctor Notes. Accessed January 25, 2021 Is an employer permitted to ask for a doctor’s note when an employee has a health-related absence? Accessed January 25, 2021

Most PlushCare articles are reviewed by M.D.s, Ph.Ds, N.P.s, nutritionists and other healthcare professionals. Click here to learn more and meet some of the professionals behind our blog. The PlushCare blog, or any linked materials are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice, nor is the information a substitute for professional medical expertise or treatment. For more information click here.

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