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Nurses and Midwives per 1k

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Nurses per Capita by Country 2024

Country
Nurses and Midwives per 1k
Finland22.30
Monaco20.20
Norway18.40
Switzerland18.30
Iceland16.80
United States15.70
Germany14.20
Australia13.10
Ireland13.00
Luxembourg12.20

Nursing is a healthcare profession that focuses on the care of individuals, families and communities, generally for the purpose of maintaining or recovering optimal health. Most countries differentiate nurses from other healthcare providers like physicians in approach, scope of practice and training. Many specializations of nursing are available, depending on the country. In addition, nurses in different countries have widely varying degrees of authority for prescribing medication.

Nurses usually comprise the largest number of practitioners in most healthcare environments. However, nursing shortages are a major healthcare concern in many parts of the world, especially in developing countries.

Gender Composition

Nursing continues to be a female-dominated profession, even in countries with equal opportunity legislation. The World Health Organization (WHO) published a report entitled State of the World's Nursing in 2020, which showed 90 percent of the world's nursing workforce is female. For example, the male-to-female ratio of nurses in North America is about 1:19, with similar ratios found in most other countries. However, this ratio was even higher in the past, as the number of male nurses in the US doubled between 1980 and 2000.

The most notable exceptions to this general trend include French-colonized countries in Africa, collectively known as Francophone Africa, due to France's tradition of male nurses. These countries include the following:

  • Congo
  • Côte d'Ivoire
  • Democratic Republic of Congo

Male nurses outnumber female nurses in all of the above countries.

Outside of Franophone Africa, the highest percentage of male nurses is in Saudi Arabia, where one nurse in three is male. European countries with a comparatively large ratio of male nurses include Czech Republic, Portugal, Spain and Italy, over 20 percent of nurses are male. However, only 11 percent of the nurses in the UK are male.

Shortages

Nursing shortages are an increasing health risk in many countries. A 2022 global survey by McKinsey & Company shows that Africa and South East Asia have the biggest shortages. This survey also found that the top five factors for retaining nurses included the following:

  • A safe working environment
  • Work-life balance
  • Caring and trusting team-mates
  • Doing meaningful work
  • Flexible work schedule

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Country
Nurses and Midwives per 1k
Year
Finland22.302018
Monaco20.202014
Norway18.402020
Switzerland18.302019
Iceland16.802020
United States15.702018
Germany14.202019
Australia13.102019
Ireland13.002018
Luxembourg12.202017
Japan11.902018
Sweden11.902018
France11.802019
New Zealand11.802020
Belgium11.702018
Netherlands11.602020
Uzbekistan11.302014
Canada11.102020
Belarus11.002015
Denmark10.502018
Slovenia10.502019
Malta9.502018
Antigua and Barbuda9.102019
United Kingdom8.902020
Czech Republic8.902019
Russia8.502019
South Korea8.202019
Lithuania8.202019
San Marino8.202014
Seychelles8.102016
Nauru7.902018
Cuba7.602018
Brazil7.402019
Portugal7.402019
Kuwait7.402018
Kazakhstan7.302015
Uruguay7.202019
Qatar7.202018
Austria7.102018
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines7.002018
Poland6.902020
Hungary6.902019
Ukraine6.702014
Estonia6.602019
Libya6.502017
Palau6.502020
Azerbaijan6.402014
Italy6.302020
Grenada6.302018
Singapore6.202017
Croatia6.202015
Spain6.102019
Romania6.102016
Serbia6.102016
Slovakia6.102019
Dominica6.102017
Brunei5.902018
Saudi Arabia5.802019
United Arab Emirates5.702019
Bosnia and Herzegovina5.702018
Israel5.602019
Kyrgyzstan5.602019
Georgia5.502020
Botswana5.502018
Philippines5.402019
Montenegro5.402020
Albania5.102019
South Africa5.002018
Armenia5.002015
Tajikistan4.802014
Bulgaria4.802018
Moldova4.702020
Maldives4.702020
Bahamas4.602018
Tonga4.502020
North Korea4.402017
Turkmenistan4.402014
Latvia4.402020
Chile4.302020
Mongolia4.202018
Saint Kitts and Nevis4.202015
Trinidad and Tobago4.102019
Indonesia4.002020
Cyprus4.002015
Fiji4.002019
Andorra4.002015
Oman3.902020
Mauritius3.902018
Suriname3.902019
Costa Rica3.802020
North Macedonia3.802015
Kiribati3.802018
Greece3.702019
Ghana3.602020
Malaysia3.502019
Guyana3.502020
Tuvalu3.502020
Nepal3.302020
Jordan3.302019
Lesotho3.302018
Samoa3.302020
Marshall Islands3.302018
Thailand3.202019
Panama3.202019
Saint Lucia3.202017
China3.102019
Barbados3.102018
Turkey3.002019
Peru3.002018
Mexico2.802019
Argentina2.602017
Sri Lanka2.502020
Ecuador2.502018
Tunisia2.502017
Bahrain2.502015
Eswatini2.502020
Iraq2.402020
Belize2.302018
Guatemala2.202020
Solomon Islands2.202018
Micronesia2.202019
Iran2.102018
Venezuela2.102018
Zimbabwe2.102020
Gabon2.102020
Bhutan2.102020
Sao Tome and Principe2.102019
Liberia2.002018
Namibia2.002018
Egypt1.902018
El Salvador1.802018
India1.702020
Lebanon1.702018
Uganda1.602020
Bolivia1.602017
Nicaragua1.602017
Nigeria1.502019
Colombia1.502020
Algeria1.502018
Syria1.502016
Dominican Republic1.502019
Comoros1.502018
Vietnam1.402016
Morocco1.402017
Eritrea1.402018
Vanuatu1.402019
Cape Verde1.302018
Kenya1.202018
Laos1.202020
DR Congo1.102018
Myanmar1.102019
Sudan1.102018
Zambia1.002018
Cambodia1.002019
Republic of the Congo1.002018
Burkina Faso0.902019
Rwanda0.902019
Mauritania0.902018
Gambia0.902020
Jamaica0.902018
Ethiopia0.802020
Yemen0.802018
Sierra Leone0.802018
Guinea Bissau0.802020
Ivory Coast0.702019
Malawi0.702020
Honduras0.702018
Paraguay0.702017
Djibouti0.702014
Tanzania0.602018
Guinea0.602018
Burundi0.602020
Pakistan0.502019
Bangladesh0.502020
Mozambique0.502020
Senegal0.502019
Papua New Guinea0.502019
Togo0.502020
Afghanistan0.402018
Angola0.402018
Cameroon0.402018
Mali0.402018
Haiti0.402018
Madagascar0.302018
Benin0.302019
South Sudan0.302018
Central African Republic0.302018
Equatorial Guinea0.302018
Niger0.202018
Chad0.202020
Somalia0.102014
showing: 191 rows

Which country has the highest number of nurses per capita?

Switzerland has the highest number of nurses per capita, with 18.37 per 1000 people.

Frequently Asked Questions

Sources