10 Best Medical Bags for Nurses (Nurse Bag & Totes Review)

Nurses need a reliable, sturdy bag to carry around all of the necessities for their profession. Nurses that travel for their job are particularly in need of a great medical bag. We’ve reviewed 10 of the best medical bags available to help you determine which one is right for you.

*disclosure: this post may contain affiliate links. If you click and make a purchase, I may receive a commission. For more info, please see my disclaimer

Our Top Picks of the Best Nurse Bags:

Best Overall: Nurse Mates Ultimate Nursing Bag on Amazon.
(light durable with plenty of color options.)

Best Nurse Bag You Can Personalize: Black Damask Nurse Tote Set on Etsy.
(Comes as a set and easy to clean.)

The Best Medical Bags for Nurses

Keep scrolling to see our personalized bag selections from Etsy.

1. Nurse Mates Ultimate Nursing Bag

Nurse Mates - Womens - Ultimate Nursing Bag
  • Ultimate Nursing Bag
  • Multiple storage pockets and compartments
  • Measures 13 x 9 x 14

This Nurse Mates Ultimate Nursing Bag lives up to its name in that it’s truly the ultimate in both comfort, durability, and style. It boasts several different sized pockets that are perfect for fitting all of your nursing necessities like a stethoscope, blood pressure cuff, pens, a water bottle, and even a tablet.

There are multiple colors and styles to choose from, so you can really express your personality while on the job. It’s lightweight which is great for nurses that need to carry their bag often with a lot of personal belongings. Even with dozens of items inside, it’s still lighter than other medical bags on the market. It’s water-resistant, so you don’t have to worry about spills or accidents either inside or outside of the bag. You can simply wipe it clean or throw it in the washing machine.

Pros:

  • Multiple colors and styles
  • Plenty of compartments for storage
  • Lightweight and durable

Cons:

  • Quite large so it may not be right for nurses that don’t travel with a lot of items frequently
  • The nylon material can be a bit noisy when opened
  • The designs aren’t embroidered so they can fade over time

Check out the Ultimate Nursing Bag by Nurse Mates available on Amazon.

2. Nylon Shoulder Bag Handbag

Crest Design Nylon Laptop Shoulder Bag Handbag Teacher Nurse Tote Organizer Travel Work Bag Purse
  • Material: Made of premium vintage-wash water-repellent nylon with heavy duty hardware; sturdily constructed with detailed streamlined stitching and fully lined with polyester fabric.
  • Multi-Pockets for Organization: Full length top zipper into main compartment; Internal organizer compartment that contains a padded laptop compartment fits laptops up to 14", and two inner pockets;...
  • Versatile: Adjustable, detachable shoulder strap and dual carry handles allows for various carrying options. Perfect for a laptop tote, business professional handbag, work bag, briefcase, travel tote,...

The Nylon Shoulder Bag Handbag from Crest Design is the perfect bag for nurses that desire multiple carrying options with their medical bags. This bag can be carried over the shoulder, as a crossbody bag, or as a handbag. Those with shoulder issues will benefit from this bag because you can evenly distribute the weight of the items inside by using it as a crossbody bag or handbag.

It comes in several appealing colors that are ideal for a variety of work environments. The nylon and polyester material looks attractive and is also easy-to-clean. There are multiple compartments in varying sizes so you can fit everything from a laptop and three-ring binder to small pens and paperclips.

There’s even a padded compartment to keep your laptop or tablet secure at all times. Although the bag does not sit up on its own, it is very sturdy and able to sit upright once items are inside of it.

Pros:

  • Multiple carrying options
  • Padded laptop compartment
  • Attractive colors and material

Cons:

  • Pay close attention to the sizes as some are smaller than advertised
  • The bag does not sit upright on its own
  • The zippers are plastic, not metal

Check out the Nylon Shoulder Work Bag by Crest Design available on Amazon.

3. Pursetti Organizing Tote Bag

Sale
Pursetti Zip-Top Organizing Utility Tote Bag (Purple Circle_L) with Multiple Exterior & Interior...
  • MULTI-PURPOSE - Combining utility and style, this is a perfect carry all tote bag for school, work, beach, park and to your kid's ballgame.
  • PREMIUM QUALITY - Made from durable polyester, it is lightweight yet very durable. The zip-top ensures nothing falls out in the car or on a flight. Easy to wipe clean with a damp cloth.
  • PLENTY OF SPACE - 6 pleated exterior pockets in front and back for your ID badge, keys, chapstick, hand lotion, pens and pencils for easy access; 2 mesh side pockets for bottles of water; 5 interior...

Style and durability combine in this Pursetti Organizing Tote Bag. There are so many great features that come with this bag, including the vibrant designs, multiple compartments, sturdy zippers, and the fact that it folds down for easy storage. There are 11 beautiful designs that make the durable polyester fabric really pop while also allowing it to be a cinch to clean. Simply wipe it with a damp cloth to remove any spills or stains.

There’s a large main compartment that’s big enough for storing a laptop. The main compartment also includes five smaller interior pockets to stash items like a cell phone, keys, and a wallet. Six exterior pockets allow you easy access to all the necessities for your job like pens, paper clips, or even a water bottle.

The bag stands upright when it’s full and folds down compactly for easy storage. It’s the perfect size for nurses that are constantly on-the-go and need to have all of their most-needed items within reach.

Pros:

  • 11 vibrant designs to choose from
  • Multiple storage compartments
  • Easy-to-clean polyester fabric

Cons:

  • Only stands upright when items are inside
  • Water bottles larger than 16oz may not fit in the exterior pockets
  • Does not include any small zippered pockets for loose items like change or SD cards

The Pursetti Organizing Tote Bag is available on Amazon.

4. Uptown Girl Tote Bag

SCOUT Uptown Girl Tote, Medium Tote Bag for Women, Lightweight Utility Tote Bag with Pockets and...
  • SLIM PROFILE medium utility tote bag for women that carries close to the body while allowing for files, a laptop, and anything else you need. With four exterior pockets and max-capacity zipper, this...
  • ROOMY INTERIOR measures 16 inches wide, 12 inches high, 5.5 inches deep, and 8.5 inch shoulder strap. A great teacher tote bag, nursing bag for nurses, or just a large tote bag for women who love...
  • ALL-WEATHER WOVEN fabric is made of interwoven polypropylene creating a light, but strong and water-resistant material (like a tarp). This durable, easy-clean fabric holds its shape when wet, dries...

This Uptown Girl Tote Bag is a great medium-sized bag for nurses that have several items to carry but may not need as much storage space as a travel nurse. There’s plenty of room to store the necessities in one large main compartment and four smaller pockets.

The interior pocket is ideal for storing valuables like a laptop, stethoscope, keys, and a cell phone. The exterior pockets allow you to always have non-valuable items like pens, water bottles, and snacks within reach.

The designs are elegant, and the polypropylene fabric is beautifully crafted to both look stylish and be functional. You can easily clean any messes up with a damp cloth, which is important for nurses that are constantly concerned with infection control.

One of the best features of this bag is that the bottom is very sturdy and stands on its own without any items inside. This makes loading and unloading the bag a breeze- an essential for busy nurses that are always on-the-go.

Pros:

  • Beautiful polypropylene fabric in a variety of elegant designs
  • Five total compartments provide just the right amount of storage
  • Stands upright on its own

Cons:

  • The exterior pockets do not zipper
  • The fabric is stiff and tends to crease
  • May emit a plastic smell until it airs out

The Uptown Girl Tote Bag is available on Amazon.com.

5. Baggallini Avenue Tote

Sale
Baggallini Avenue Tote, Apple
  • THE PERFECT CARRY-ON: With a lightweight, roomy design, Baggallini’s Avenue tote is the perfect bag for traveling or as a catch-all everyday purse.
  • ZIPPERED POCKETS: A padded 10” by 13” laptop pocket keeps your computer safe, while other zippered pockets secure your must-have essentials so they’re ready to go.
  • MATCHES ANY WARDROBE: The Avenue bag comes in a variety of colors and patterns to fit seamlessly into any wardrobe – perfect for travel, the office, a night out, or an afternoon shopping trip.

This Baggallini Avenue Tote is the perfect bag for traveling nurses for so many reasons. It’s made from a durable, lightweight nylon fabric that is easy-to-clean and can be used as a carry-on bag when flying for a travel nursing position.

It also keeps your valuables safe with the amazing RFID feature that prohibits others from stealing your personal data and credit card information. This bag also meets most safety standards at heavily-monitored places like stadiums, federal buildings, and airports.

Not only are the safety features plentiful, the design of the bag is also gorgeous. It comes in a wide variety of solid colors and patterns, and the nylon fabric simply wipes clean with a damp cloth. It includes a removable shoulder strap and two carrying handles so you can wear it in several different ways, including a crossbody style.

There’s even a luggage handle sleeve, so you don’t have to fumble with your bag while you’re checking items at the airport. It’s truly the definition of the ideal medical bag for traveling nurses.

Pros:

  • RFID safety feature
  • Meets most safety requirements for large buildings
  • Multiple carrying options

Cons:

  • The main compartment is angled and may not fit large items
  • The side compartments are on the smaller side
  • Ideal for light travel but not large enough to hold a lot of necessities

Check out Baggallini Avenue tote on Amazon.

6. Hopkins Antimicrobial Home Health Shoulder Bag for Nurses

Hopkins Medical Products Antimicrobial Home Health Shoulder Bag for Nurses, Home Heathcare and...
  • Microban protective coating helps reduce the opportunity for bacteria to grow on bags. Added layer of defense for infection control procedures.
  • 600D waterproof material and reinforced bottom with scuff feet
  • Removable adjustable shoulder strap and double-grip handles

For the nurse that is always traveling from one job to the next, the Hopkins Antimicrobial Home Health Shoulder Bag for Nurses is the all-in-one medical bag that you need. It was specially designed to cater to the needs of mobile nurses, including home health nurses and hospice nurses. It’s made from a durable 600D waterproof material that boasts a microban protective coating that’s crucial for nurses that are moving from one patient to the next but still need to focus on infection control.

There are several great design features to this bag that make it even more beneficial for nurses who travel. The front pocket unzips completely, allowing you easy access to your nursing essentials like a stethoscope, thermometer, blood pressure cuff, and bandages.

There’s a large inner compartment that can store a laptop, folders, binders, and other paperwork. The zipper compartments on the side are the perfect size for storing keys, cell phones, and personal items. There’s even a HIPPA-compliant lockable pocket to ensure all patient’s records are securely stored.

Pros:

  • Microban protective coating
  • Front pocket that opens completely, allowing easy access to the contents inside
  • HIPPA-compliant lockable pocket

Cons:

  • The middle section is not as deep as other similar medical bags
  • The side pockets are zippered but small
  • Only comes in one color

The Hopkins Antimicrobial Home Health Shoulder Bag is available on Amazon.com.

7. Brooke & Jess Designs Large Nursing Zippered Tote Bag with Pockets

I'm a Nurse, What's Your Superpower Natural - Large Nursing Basic Tote Bags for Nurses - Perfect for...
  • PERFECT WORK BAG, ACCESSORY FOR NURSES: Show your favorite nurse some love with this cute, fun, unique custom tote bag made just for teachers. Has the fun saying I'm A Nurse, What's Your Superpower?...
  • LARGE ZIPPERED TOTE BAG WITH FRONT AND SIDE POCKETS: Dimensions of this bag are 20'' X 13.5'' X 6'' - Perfect teacher bag for work. Has enough room for all of your belongings and more! Includes a...
  • HEAVY DUTY MATERIAL: This bag is made to last with heavy duty polyester canvas material and is built to last

If you are or know a spunky nurse who travels a lot, this Brooke & Jess Designs Large Nursing Zippered Tote Bag with Pockets would make an excellent way for you or them to express their personality while they’re working. It comes in several different colors, all with funny sayings that will perk up any workday. The thick, durable canvas material is machine-washable and built to survive all those long 12-hour shifts.

The 28-inch long webbed handles make carrying the tote to and from work a breeze. You can either throw it over your shoulder or elbow or carry it by hand, giving plenty of versatility to an already great bag. There’s a large, zippered main pocket that includes an inside zippered pocket and three other compartments to organize all of your nursing essentials.

The bag also boasts two side pockets that are perfectly sized for water bottles. The front pocket fits tablets up to 11 inches and can also be used to store other nursing materials. For a fun and functional bag, look no further than this adorable tote.

Pros:

  • Humorous sayings about the nursing profession
  • Durable canvas material
  • Several compartments for storing items

Cons:

  • May not be appropriate for conservative work environments
  • Canvas material must be machine-washed, stains don’t just wipe away
  • Not usable as a crossbody bag

The Brooke & Jess Designs Nurse Tote Bag is available on Amazon.com.

Personalized Nurse Bags & Totes

8. Personalized Heart Stethoscope with Flowers

by SimplyCustomLife

Never get your medical bag confused with someone else’s again with this Personalized Heart Stethoscope with Flowers bag that can be customized with your name. There are seven different colors to choose from, and each bag is made from 600D polyester fabric.

Each handmade bag is stitched to perfection with each thread being carefully placed, ensuring it will last for years. All of the inks used to personalize the bags are made from the highest-quality materials, making for vibrant colors that truly stand out.

The bag is a great size, sitting 14 inches tall and 20 inches wide. The zippered main compartment is the perfect spot to store nursing essentials and either a laptop or tablet. There’s also a pen loop on the front pocket, so you’re never without a pen in reach. The two mesh side pockets are excellent for storing water bottles and non-valuable items. The entire bag is easy to carry with thick shoulder straps that measure 29 1/2 inches long.

Pros:

  • Seven vibrant colors to choose from
  • Name personalization made from high-quality ink
  • Generously-sized zippered main compartment

Cons:

  • Only one zippered compartment
  • No padded area for electronic devices
  • The shoulder straps are not adjustable

Check out the other reviews of the personalized heart stethoscope bag on Etsy.com.

9. Black Damask Nurse Tote Set

by NurseTotesAndApparel

This Black Damask Nurse Tote Set is unique because it comes with not only a medical bag but also a lunch bag, making it an excellent option for the nurse that’s always on-the-go. There are two different size options- both 19 inches and 16 inches- with each coming with a coordinating lunch bag. The bag can be personalized with a name or even initials so that if your bag is ever lost or stolen, they know who to return it to.

The black and white contrast of colors makes this bag a very attractive option for any nurse. It’s a classic design but also stylish and would be appropriate for all different work environments. The canvas material is easy-to-clean and sturdy so you can carry everything you need in just one bag.

The tote bag boasts a large zippered pocket, four outside pockets, and two mesh pockets. You can store all of your necessities within reach in the most fashionable way possible. The coordinating lunch bag is insulated, ensuring your lunch or dinner stays cold or hot and is ready and waiting for you when you’re ready to eat.

Pros:

  • Classic black-and-white design
  • Two size options
  • Coordinating, insulated lunch bag

Cons:

  • Only comes in one color option
  • Not a lot of smaller compartments to store loose items
  • The carrying handles can only be worn over the shoulder

Check out the Black Damask Nurse Tote Set on Etsy.com.

10. Monogrammed Nurse Tote Bag

by SewSuzanneMonograms

If you’ve been searching for a durable crossbody medical bag that can be personalized, this Monogrammed Nurse Tote Bag is the one. You can choose from several different color options and monogram styles so you can really customize the bag to your liking. There’s even the option to choose the thread color for the monogram. This nurse tote bag is made from sturdy canvas material and is both functional and easy-to-clean.

The inside is made from soft cotton, so your nursing essentials are always kept safe and secure. The zippered closure also helps keep all of your valuables inside where they belong while you travel to and from your job.

The main compartment also boasts an interior zippered pocket so you can keep things like keys and your cell phone away from items like your stethoscope, blood pressure cuff, thermometer, and medications. In addition to the generously-sized main pocket, there are three slip pockets where you can store a water bottle, snacks, pens, and more.

Pros:

  • Crossbody bag can also be carried over-the-shoulder or by the handle
  • Durable canvas material
  • Generously-sized zippered compartment

Cons:

  • The canvas material must be machine-washed to remove stains
  • No cushioned laptop compartment
  • Cannot customize with your entire name, only initials

See the price of the Sew Suzanne Monogrammed Nurse Tote on Etsy.

Buying Guide: Medical Bags for Nurses

1. Sizing

With so many tools to carry around, a generously-sized bag is essential for a nurse to be able to do their job correctly. Bags that are too large can be cumbersome and heavy which can be difficult for nurses who are constantly on-the-go. A bag that can fit all of your essential items neatly but without a lot of excess space is the best option.

2. Design

The design of a bag is almost as important as what’s stored inside. A medical bag should have several compartments that fit items of different sizes so that everything has its own space. This makes finding the right tool for a job an easier task.

3. Durability

Nurses often work long shifts so they need a bag that can hold up to the constant hustle and bustle of a busy medical environment. Things to look for in terms of durability include:

  • Strong, sturdy material that can withstand a lot of weight
  • Thick, cushioned straps that offer different carrying options
  • Metal zippers that won’t break with frequent use
  • Machine-washable material or materials that can at minimum be wiped easily to disinfect

4. Cleanliness

The job of a nurse requires them to be continually disinfecting and keeping infection control always at the forefront of their mind. Being able to clean and easily disinfect a medical bag helps avoid the spread of potentially life-threatening germs and bacteria to other patients. Medical bags coated with a microban protective coating can prevent the spread of germs even more.

5. Patient Information Safety

HIPPA privacy laws are very strict, and even traveling nurses need to abide by them. Carrying patient paperwork or patient information on a laptop can put patients at risk if their information is not stored properly. Having paperwork secured in a locked or zippered pocket is the best way to keep patient information safe.

6. Personal Data Safety

Keeping your own personal information safe is also an important factor to consider when purchasing a medical bag. You’ll most likely store items like a cell phone and wallet inside of your medical bag which can potentially expose your personal information to hackers and criminals. A nurse bag with RFID protection eliminates the possibility of someone scanning your personal information as they walk by, leaving you protected at all times.

7. Personalization

Being able to personalize your medical bag to your liking is a great feature to look for. For a truly unique bag that will set you apart from others in the nursing profession, look for items that offer:

  • Multiple color options
  • Name or initial personalization
  • Unique or funny nurse sayings
  • Different carrying options like a crossbody bag, shoulder bag, or carrying handle

8. Coordinating Set

Many nurses also have the need for other types of bags in addition to a medical bag. Items like a lunch tote or miniature bag for carrying things like pens and paper clips are all useful add-on features. Having everything coordinated makes you look more professional and put-together which makes a great first impression on patients, fellow nurses, physicians, and administrators.

9. Waterproof

A bag that is made from waterproof material is beneficial because you can throw the bag in the washing machine to easily clean it. You also don’t need to worry if you get caught in wet weather, which can be a concern for nurses that travel to different parts of the country. You can rest assured that all of your nursing essentials are safely stored inside with a waterproof bag.

10. Safety Requirements

Airports, stadiums, federal buildings, and even some hospitals are getting more and more strict about the types of bags allowed within their facility. Bags that meet the safety requirements set forth by certain facilities can make traveling as a nurse much easier. You may even be able to use your medical bag as a carry-on bag when traveling by plane because it’s small enough to fit in the overhead compartment or at your feet during the flight.

11. Cushioned Straps

Having to carry a heavy bag on your shoulder all day as you run from patient to patient can be very taxing on your body. Help alleviate some of the pain by purchasing a bag with cushioned shoulder straps. The cushioning keeps the straps from digging into your shoulder and causing issues like neck pain, headache, or even bruising.

12. Pen Loop

One of the things many nurses complain about is that they’re always losing their pens. Whether they’re being stolen or just suddenly going missing, it can be frustrating to constantly be searching for a pen, especially in stressful situations where a patient needs immediate care. A pen loop on the front of a medical bag means there’s always one within your reach, making you more efficient and less frustrated.

As a side note, we’ve also reviewed some of the best writing pens for nurses, so definitely check it out if you’re on the hunt for a new pen.

13. Mesh Pockets

Even though a medical bag is primarily used to store necessary nursing tools like stethoscopes, blood pressure cuffs, thermometers, medications, patient paperwork, and more, it’s also convenient to be able to store personal items alongside them. Mesh pockets on the sides of the bag allow you to keep things like water bottles, snacks, and your cell phone within reach but separate from the items essential to perform your job.

14. Upright Bag

A bag that stands upright on its own without any items inside can make loading and unloading a medical bag a much easier task. You won’t have to worry about the bag toppling over and spilling out all of its contents, which is particularly important for nurses who are in charge of carrying around private patient information. An upright bag is also useful when traveling because you can set it down on its own or on top of other bags without having to fuss with it.

Final Thoughts

a nurse tote

A great medical bag can make the job of a nurse so much easier. When you’re able to quickly access the tools you need to perform your job efficiently, you’re left with more time to focus on patient care. These medical bags are all excellent options for nursing professionals.

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