High Ratio of Doctors and Nurses in Iceland

mbl.is/Eggert Jóhannesson

Vala Hafstað

A new OECD study, including 32 countries, shows that Iceland ranks third in terms of the number of physicians and nurses per 1,000 inhabitants, mbl.is reports.

In Iceland, there are 3.89 physicians per 1,000 inhabitants and 15.73 nurses per 1,000 inhabitants.

The ratio is the highest in Norway, where it is 5.1 and 18.05 per 1,000 inhabitants, respectively, and the second highest ratio is in Switzerland.


The study is based on figures from 2020. OECD points out that countries with a high ratio of doctors and nurses may have a greater capacity to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. By contrast, in countries with fewer doctors and nurses per population, the existing workforce continues to be even more stretched in its attempts to address an increased work load caused by the COVID-19 crisis.

A closer look at the charts shows that in addition to Norway and Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Sweden, Demark, the Czech Republic, Lithuania, Italy and Spain all have a higher number of doctors per 1,000 inhabitants than Iceland does, but the reason Iceland is third on the list is the country’s high number of nurses per 1,000 inhabitants, which makes the combined number of doctors and nurses this high.

To view the study, see here .




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