As medicine and healthcare-related businesses and services are as prolific as ever, medical stock photos are very sought after by business owners, designers, and creatives.
If you’re developing, managing, and promoting a medical product or service, of course, you are going to need beautiful, themed imagery.
And here you will find everything you need to know about high-resolution medical stock photography and where to find it, to get yourself the most appealing and perfect medical pictures for your designs.
Our guide includes a direct search bar to discover medical images on the best stock photo sites, as well as a long list of useful, specific keywords to find the exact medical stock photo you're after!
Here we go! Get your doctor stock photo, the right scientist stock photo, an image of a nurse or just a stethoscope, and other medical equipment used in a hospital for healthcare or in a clinic.
Coronavirus Stock Photos
Publishers, bloggers, service providers, all scanning the web looking for images that illustrate the current state of affairs with the world pandemic of Covid-19 also known as Coronavirus. Are you one of them? Then don't you worry, you've landed on the right spot! We recommend checking out Shutterstock's great resource page about Covid-19 here and our post about 8 Positive Visual Ideas to Communicate and Inspire in Coronavirus Times.
And for more free resources, don't miss our Corona-Help List with lots of free images, free tools, and much more for creatives and business owners working from home!
The Best Images About Coronavirus (Covid-19)
When there is such a globally relevant and sensitive topic, it's important your coverage of it be precise and respectful.
Sure, some things can still be subject to memes and other humourous concepts that help light the mood (especially when it comes to social media images), but medical and health information should be treated responsibly, and the pictures and graphics used to illustrate it must be tasteful, and as correct as possible.
- Coronavirus Pandemic: As Covid-19 is officially a pandemic, images need to reflect its severity.
- Coronavirus test: Lab test results are very relevant in detecting the Covid-19 disease and quick test kits are at the centre of many discussions on the topic.
- Intensive care beds: This kind of medical equipment illustrates the worst-case scenario for this disease but they are a recurrent visual resource to enforce the need to prevent it from spreading. Connected to this, images of intubated patients are also very sought after.
- Respiratory syndrome: It's the most acute complication from catching the corona infection, so it's also the most talked-about. Another useful term for this is the respiratory virus. And the term pneumonia is also linked to these symptoms.
- Medical ventilator: Mechanical breathing assisting machines are key to treat patients with severe coronavirus symptoms and mentioned very often. Another good keyword to find images about this is oxygen masks or mechanical ventilator.
- Lungs: The organs that are most affected by acute Covid-19 disease, many communicators need good images and graphics about them to illustrate their content.
- Medical face masks: An emblematic symbol of coronavirus prevention is that of sterile face masks.
- Fever: A high body temperature is one of the main and earliest symptoms that help for an early coronavirus diagnosis.
- Cough: It's another common symptom of coronavirus infection.
- Hand sanitizer: A repetitive point in avoiding the spread of the coronavirus is good hand hygiene. The use of hand sanitizers is constantly enforced. Another good keyword here is hand washing.
- Disinfectants: Another key element in the prevention of the disease is disinfecting and sterilizing surfaces and objects, so this is something many publishers are covering.
- Senior patients: They are the high-risk group in the coronavirus pandemic and so the most represented and discussed in communications about the matter. Plus, senior citizens are a relevant marketing target in medicine, for gerontology services mainly.
- Vaccination: The need to develop and mass-produce a vaccine for Covid-19 is of the utmost importance, a lot of conversations are happening around the world about this. In the same way, references to several clinical trials to find these vaccines and other possible treatments are also very relevant.
- Research: The study of this new virus, its development, and the most successful treatments and vaccines for it are at the forefront of media and government reports, so images about this are also sought after.
- Pre illness: A lot of the coverage about Covid-19 revolves around the stages previous to developing symptoms as it's crucial to isolate yourself and prevent infecting others.
Remember, below you have a list of 8 great stock photo agencies to get medical imagery from, and at any of them, you can try these keywords to find the best corona virus stock photos for your visual content!
BONUS: Pond5's “Reunited” collection has lots of beautiful images that portray the moments of reuniting and reconnecting with family and friends as the pandemic's end seems near, and social restrictions are lifted in many places.
Medical Stock Photos as a Stock Photography Niche
At this point, you probably know the online stock photo market has pretty much any image you can need or imagine, and likely millions of variations for each as well. Logically, it is the demand for certain types of photos that fuels the amount of them that are available across the stock photo agencies.
When it comes to medical imagery, as we briefly mentioned above, there is an evergreen demand for them as so many activities (commercial, non-commercial, even governmental) in this field need a constant flow of visuals, sometimes bringing up themes that resonate with the current social landscape, such as disability images for example.
Such undying need results in not only extensive collections of medical stock photos and health care and wellbeing images in every top stock photo agency but also the existence of specialised libraries that focus exclusively on this subject. To know which ones they are, just read ahead!
Medical Stock Images – the Perks
If you're a seasoned stock photo buyer, this won't be news to you. But if you're not a graphic designer or regular stock photo user and you landed here looking for the best medical images (we tell you where to get them right below!) you should learn a bit about the cool benefits in medical stock photography for you:
- Optimal quality of medical stock and medical icons: Most stock photo agencies offer high-resolution imagery that is suitable for professional work and will look wonderful in pretty much any place you want to use them
- Skill-shot of healthcare images: These photos from contributors that are commonly professional photographers who know their craft very well, and the images show it
- Instant availability: Unlike what happens when you order a custom photograph, stock images are ready to download and use
- Cost-effectiveness of medicine stock photos: Royalty-free stock photography is very affordable and gives you a battery of usage rights for a one-time fee, making it a very effective resource for most businesses – Rights-managed photography can be more expensive, but it can include special rights like exclusive use
- Legal safety: Using licensed photos grants you're rightfully rewarding photographers for their work and also covers you legally, very important if you're using photos for commercial purposes
You don't have to think twice to conclude medical stock photos are a convenient solution for your visual needs
Where to Buy the Top Healthcare Stock Photos Online
Here’s a quick list of the best medicine stock photo agencies to buy high resolution royalty-free medical images with the best quality, quantity, and prices. Most of these made it into our ultimate list of the 20+ Best Stock Photo Sites Ever, so you know they're trustworthy offers!
Stock Photo Secrets Shop
Our Stock Photo Secrets Shop has a whole collection of images dedicated to medical & healthcare, with well over 130,000 medicine stock photos to browse, and growing! You can also find the perfect medicine themed photo using the advanced search engine with either keywords or reference images.
The Shop has the best offer and prices in royalty-free stock photos for small and medium-sized businesses and also medical icons, so it’s certainly one of the best places to get stock photos of medical themes.
Ready to discover great medical stock images in Stock Photo Secrets? Hit the blue button in this search bar and see what photos turn up!
Shutterstock – Great Medical Stock Photography
Shutterstock is one of the biggest and most popular stock photo agencies, and its massive library includes a healthcare/medical selection with over 5 million files to choose from! It’s easy to navigate as it subdivides into themed categories like Medicine, Emergency, Diseases, etc. Besides, Shutterstock has a top-tech search engine where you can find images using keywords and filters, as well as using another image as a reference.
This agency has very affordable deals in royalty free images, and you can even get a lower price if you use this special Shutterstock Coupon Code with 15% off!
Check out millions of medical stock images in Shutterstock, simply hit the red “find on Shutterstock” button below and start navigating the results!
Photocase Medical Pictures
Photocase is a German stock photo agency famous for its out-of-the-box styled images. While their photos have a strong artistic and unique feel, they still cover all kinds of popular themes, and that includes medical stock photos. They are the perfect token for a more intimate and individual representation of medicine and medical topics.
Photocase sells photos individually and lets you save with prepaid credit packs too. However, you get the best deal thanks to our Photocase Coupon Code with 5 free credits + 10% off in your purchase!
- Learn more: Photocase review
- Save! Photocase Coupon Code: 5 Free Credits + 10% Off
- Visit: Photocase
See for yourself the kind of distinctive medical images you can get at Photocase by hitting on the button below!
Medical Images at Getty Images
One of the most prestigious stock photography agencies worldwide, Getty Images hosts a large selection with over a million images with a medical theme, that you can view by just entering the keyword “medical” in their powerful search tool. You can narrow this pool of photos by adding keywords and using results filters. This agency has multiple license types and prices available, according to your specific needs, but you get the best deal with their Ultrapacks that let you save up to 30% in volume purchases!
Want to see the variety of medical stock photos Getty has for you? Click on the black button on the search bar below to surf their collection!
Healthcare Images at iStock
Renowned stock photo agency iStock brings you a medical & healthcare collection to surf with millions of images divided into sub-themed collections like Hospital, Surgeon, Alternative Medicine, and more. Of course, you can also search for the right images using their modern search feature, with either keywords or any image you want to find similar royalty free photos.
iStock has very convenient prices and options for all budgets, and their huge selection of exclusive content –including medical pictures– is a great added value. Plus, for a limited time, you can save 15% off your credit packs and subscriptions in iStock with our great iStock Promo Code! So hurry up!
iStock has amazing stock images with a medical theme, and you can see that for yourself just by clicking on the “find on iStock” button below!
Adobe’s proprietary stock photo service –integrated into Creative Cloud platform–, Adobe Stock has lots of photos about medical services and health care. You’ll find thousands to millions of them in here their science category, but you can also look for them using keywords, or even doing a reverse image search on the base of any image you provide.
Adobe Stock has excellent deals in royalty free stock photography, and this includes a Free Trial for One Month that you can use to download images for free and test their service!
- Learn more: Adobe Stock review
- Try free! Adobe Stock Free Trial – 10 free images for one month
- Visit: Adobe Stock
Find the perfect medical stock photos for your projects on Adobe Stock, by hitting the pink button on this search bar!
Medical Images – Best Medical Stock Photography
Previously known as Photo Take, Medical Images is a stock photo agency specialized in, you guessed, medical stock photography. They have over a million images, displayed in categorized galleries and searchable by keywords as well. It’s a highly specialized library that includes everything from micrography and to clinical images and beyond.
They work with professional contributors and provide very accurate content with dedicated captions that can simplify your work. You can even request custom medical stock photos if they don’t have what you’re after in existence.
Medical Images have both rights managed and royalty free licenses available, so you can likely find medical stock photography that suits you in all aspects.
- Visit: Medical Images
Photo Researchers Inc. owns Science Source Images, and they have over 50 years of history providing science and medicine themed imagery for publishers and creatives. Their library is full of very specific categories and images, from particular diseases to more general healthcare pictures.
This company works with rights managed licenses, that get tailored and priced according to your intended use, granting you will get the exact coverage you need.
- Visit: Science Source
Vintage Med Stock
Vintage Med Stock is a particular stock photo service created by photographer Mark Sozier. It provides hundreds of historical and vintage medical images, which can be harder to find in other libraries.
You can buy any of these vintage health and medicine related photos with a royalty free license that lets you use them commercially in various ways.
- Visit: Vintage Med Stock
BONUS: Medical Stock Photos Free
If you're sitting there thinking “it's all well and good, but right now I can't afford to pay for photos” (or if you want to source images for your medical project for free), we have you covered too. In the following websites, you will be able to download medical stock images free of charge.
Luckily for you, all the listed above are included in our insightful List of the 27+ Best Free Stock Photo Sites, so you'll be as safe as you can be!
Pixabay is a German-based free stock photo site, and it's as large as reliable. They offer a big collection with over 10,000 free medical stock images that you can use free of charge, under Creative Commons license.
An uber-popular free photo site with a community-style, Unsplash has 100+ beautiful medicine-themed photos that you can easily search with appropriate tags like “medicine”, “healthcare” or “medical”. And you can use them for free under a custom free use license.
PikWizard is a great free photo download site owned by a professional stock media brand, and they have hundreds of medical stock images available that you can search very easily using their search tool, and use in your work under a custom license, totally free of charge.
Pexels is a free photo aggregating site created in Germany that hosts a wide variety of medical stock photo files ready to download and use in your designs at no cost, with a Creative Commons license (CC0).
Developed by Shopify, Burst is a free stock photo website with a strong commercial focus, and they have 300+ healthcare and medicine related photos for you, that are perfect if you're running a business with a medical background. You can download and use these images for free with either a Creative Commons or a custom license.
All the Types of Medical Images You Can Find
The fact this topic is so extensively covered both in big stock photo agencies and smaller specialised libraries has many positives, and that includes a wide variety within the subject that grants you will have plenty of options in affordable and high-quality, royalty-free stock photos with a medical theme to explore, no matter what your particular project is about. Here are some examples:
Images of Medicine Staff at Work: Stock photos of doctors, medical students, medical scientists, nurses, and technicians in hospitals, medical clinics, practice offices, labs, etc.
Photos about Medical Treatments: medical professionals interacting with or treating patients
Medical Equipment Stock Photos: instruments, supplies, and more
Pictures of Medical Specialisations: surgical, traumatology, dermatology, x-rays, gynecology, dentistry, psychology/psychiatry, etc.
Medical Diseases Images: people suffering from specific diseases, illness, or pain
Invisible Illness Photos: pictures about mental health issues, and also about diseases with no obvious external symptoms such as cancer, HIV, or diabetes. See a great collection of HIV-related images from Shutterstock and ViiV Healthcare.
Science Medical Stock Photos: micrography, microscopic-styled illustrations, human anatomy, and more
Stock Photos on Healthcare and Healthy Living: fitness and physical activities, healthy diet, spa services, meditation and relaxation, and more
Vintage Medical Photos: the history of medicine, medical procedures, instruments, instructive posters, etc.
And these are just some of the many specific styles of images you will find in stock photo libraries. As you see, you will not be short of choice in beautiful imagery for your visuals, independently of the specific branch of medicine and health care of your project!
How to Use Medical Stock Photography
Royalty-free medical images are just like any other kind of royalty-free stock photos in the sense that you can use them in the most varied scenarios and with a commercial purpose for a little cost (and one-time fee).
With this resource, you will be able to use medical stock photos for nearly any project you have in mind. Whether you are a professional with a private practice, part of a new medical clinic or service, running a healthcare business, working for a health-related organization (or a designer hired by any of them) you can use these images for:
- Developing new businesses around medical services
- Outlining health awareness campaigns
- Preparing presentations with a medical theme for doctors, medical scientists, pharmaceuticals, etc.
- Publishing in the medical field: blog, articles, etc.
- Revamping or updating medicine-related websites with crisp images
- Livening up or updating social media channels with medical subject
All that and more is possible with royalty-free stock photography, and as you just verified reading above, you have a massive variety of medical and health-themed stock images right at your fingertips!
How to find the best Medical Stock Photos by Keywords
Here are some example images from Stock Photo Secrets to see the best results for the keywords used above:
What You Can't Do with Medical Stock Images
When it comes to medical photos, Royalty Free is, as you just saw, an advantageous and versatile license that lets you do a lot with your images. But not everything. There are a few restrictions and red-flag points you need to know about and avoid:
And when it comes to health, some of them fall under this sensitive use limitation: serious diseases, special abilities/needs, or conditions derivated from lifestyle choices are all delicate topics that you should handle with consideration at the time of designing a visual.
If you’re in doubt if your intended use would infringe the sensitive use restriction, make sure to contact the agency directly to get clarification.
The nature of stock photography implies the permits you have to use the images are generic and not specific to your intended use. For this reason, you are not allowed to present people depicted in stock photos as if they are endorsing products or services directly.
It’s important to know this before creating visuals for medical services: you can use photos of people posing as professionals, patients, etc. But you cannot in any way imply they are actual doctors or customers to the service you’re promoting.
So if you’re using medical stock photos in leaflets or similar, you must keep this limit in mind. If you think you’ll exceed it, you will need an Extended license which makes the photo a bit more expensive but gives you unlimited reproduction rights.
Products for Resale
This one might not come up a lot in medical related businesses, but still worth noting:
While you must be aware of these use case scenarios, it’s fairly obvious the rights and benefits in royalty free medical photos far exceed their few limitations.
Improve your Visual Game with Medical Stock Photos
If you work in, for (or happen to be hired to design for) the medical field and related industries, you can rest assured the royalty free stock photography market has you covered.
Not only you can find amazing, professional, and high-resolution quality images in every possible variation of this subject, but also you can get them with a flexible license at really affordable prices. What’s more to ask?
So choose your supplier and start downloading great medical stock images right now!
- Stock Photo Secrets for budget-friendly medical photos
- Getty Images for exclusive and first-class medical imagery
- iStock for affordable yet unique medical stock photography
- Shutterstock for massive variety in medical pictures
- Adobe Stock if you design medical theme graphics with Creative Cloud applications
- Medical Images for medical images only and various licensing options
- Science Source for reliable medical photography with custom licensing
- Vintage Med Stock for historical medical photos to use commercially
Let us know which medical stock photo agency you pick!