• Professionally active physicians, per 100 000 population (Line chart)
  • Professionally active physicians, per 100 000 (Boxplot chart)
Data set notes
European database on human and technical resources for health

Indicators: 250
Updated: 23 September 2016
Downloads: 4388

HlthRes-DB provides a wide range of statistics on human and technical resources for health and offers data on non-monetary health care resources collected through the joint work of the Statistical Office of the European Union (Eurostat), the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and WHO/Europe. It contains nearly 200 indicators on human and technical resources for health.

Human resources indicators: Indicators include the number and density of a wide range of health personnel (such as physicians, nurses, midwives, dentists, pharmacists and health care assistants), according to three different concepts (those practising, professionally active and licensed to practice). Information on employment in hospitals and numbers of medical and other graduates is also available.

Technical resources data: Data include the number and density of hospitals and hospital beds, stratified by ownership of facility (public, non-profit-making private and for-profit private), in addition to the number of beds for long-term care.

HlthRes-DB also contains indicators on the availability of the following medical equipment: computed tomography (CT) scanners, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) units, positron emission tomography (PET) scanners, gamma cameras, digital subtraction angiography units, mammographs, radiation therapy equipment and lithotriptors.

Coverage: HlthRes-DB contains data from the 53 Member States in the WHO European Region. To be updated yearly, usually in late summer, it is currently available in English and Russian.

More information: http://www.euro.who.int/en/data-and-evidence/databases/european-database-on-human-and-technical-resources-for-health-hlthres-db
Indicator notes
Professionally active physicians, per 100 000 population
Indicator code: prof.phys.rate This indicator shares the definition with the parent indicator "Professionally active physicians, total number".

Professionally active physicians include practising physicians and other physicians for whom their medical education is a prerequisite for the execution of the job.
Inclusion
- Physicians who provide services directly to patients
- Physicians working in administration and management positions requiring a medical education
- Physicians conducting research into human disorders and illness and preventive and curative methods
- Physicians participating in the development and implementation of health promotion and public health laws and regulations
- Physicians preparing scientific papers and reports
Exclusion
- Dentists and stomatologists/dental surgeons
- Physicians who hold a post / job under which medical education is not required
- Unemployed physicians and retired physicians
- Physician working abroad
Note: The number should be at the end of the calendar year.
Country notes
Albania
Data not available.
Armenia
Source of data: Republican Research and Information Health Center and the National Statistic Service of the Republic of Armenia, Report form of the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Armenia ? 17 “Health employment”, http://healthinfo.am/Statistical%20Report.htm, Statistical book, Armenia, English version (zip) 2009.
Reference period: 31 December.
Austria
Data not available.
Azerbaijan
Data not available.
Belarus
Source of data: National Statistics Committee of Belarus http://belstat.gov.by/; National Archives of the Republic of Belarus http://narb.by/.
Reporting period: 31 December
Deviation from definition: Data on foreign doctors are not included because this data is unavailable.
Belgium
Data not available.
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Source: Public Health Institute of FB&H - Annual report organisation structure of health personnel Public Health Institute of Republica Srpska - Annual report organisation structure of health personnel.
Bulgaria
Source of data: Bulgarian Medical Association, Medical register.
Reference period: 31st December
Coverage: According to the national legislation all physicians who are professionally active in Bulgaria have to be included in the Medical Register at the Bulgarian Medical Association.
Croatia
Data not available.
Cyprus
Data not available.
Czechia
Data not available.
Denmark
Source of data: Statens Serum Institut, Labour Register for Health Personnel.
Reference period: 31st December.
Coverage:
- Physicians who have a license to practice and whose status in the Central Personnel Register (CPR) is active (not dead or abroad), i.e. in the country; a) employed, b) employed, being on leave or c) employed, receiving sickness benefit.
- Dentists are not included.
Break in time series: 1992. Change in the data collection.
Estonia
Data not available.
Finland
1) Until 2009
Source of data: Finnish Medical Association. The Register of the Finnish Medical Association which is updated by a yearly survey covering all physicians licensed to practice in Finland who are not retired.
Reference period: Mid-March.
Coverage: Physicians are classified according to their main employment. Concerns professionally active physicians. Includes physicians who are under 64 years old. 2) 2010
Source of data: Finnish Medical Association. Data from a survey: "Physicians’ Working Conditions and Health” 2010 survey.
Reference period: End of year.
Coverage: Survey for 7000 physicians, response rate 54%. The data were weighted according to sex, age group and specialisation to represent all physicians under 70 years old who are licensed to practice and living in Finland. These data concern professionally active physicians under 65 years old. 3) 2011
Source of data: Finnish Medical Association. Data from a survey: “Finnish Medical Association Labour Market Survey 2012”.
Reference period: March 2012.
Coverage: The survey population consisted of physicians aged under 70 years old, resident in Finland and having a registered e-mail address in the Finnish Medical Association’s register. The survey was carried out electronically in March 2012.An e-mail invitation was sent to 18701 physicians. A total of 5660 physicians responded. The data were weighted according to sex, age group and specialisation to represent all physicians under 70 years old who are licensed to practice and living in Finland. These data concern professionally active physicians under 65 years old. 4) 2013
Source of data: Finnish Medical Association. Data from a survey: "Finnish Medical Association Labour Market Survey 2014”.
Reference period: March 2014.
Coverage: The survey population consisted of physicians aged under 70 years old, resident in Finland and having a registered e-mail address in the Finnish Medical Association’s register. The survey was carried out electronically in March 2014.  A total of 4 562 physicians responded.  The data were weighted according to sex, age group and specialisation to represent all physicians under 70 years old who are licensed to practice and living in Finland in the beginning of 2014. This data concerns professionally active physicians under 65 years old. All physicians working in primary care are classified as GP’s regardless of their specialty. The remaining specialist physicians are classified according to their last specialty. The unspecialised physicians not working in primary care and the physicians currently specialising are classified as “Medical doctors not further defined”.
Deviation from the definition: Data refer to professionally active physicians. Break in time series: 2010.
France
Source of data: Ministere du Travail, de l’Emploi et de la Sante - Direction de la Recherche, des Etudes, de l'Evaluation et des Statistiques (DREES), Sous-Direction de l'Observation de la Sante et de l'Assurance maladie, Bureau des Professions de sante.
- Until 2010 (01/01/2011): Repertoire ADELI, DREES.
- From 2011 (01/01/2012): RPPS (Repertoire partage des professionnels de sante), ASIP-SANTE RPPS.
Reference period: 31st December.
Coverage:
- Data refer to metropolitan France and D.O.M. (overseas departments).
- Data refer to active physicians, either self-employed (“liberaux”) or salaried. Self-employed physicians are physicians registered in the “ADELI Registry” and working full-time or part-time in private practice or private surgery, in a clinic or laboratory. Salaried physicians are physicians registered in the “ADELI Registry”, practising only full-time in hospital activities and in the field of health care, preventive medicine, control, teaching, research or administration.
- All public and private hospitals and clinics are covered.
- Stomatologists and dentists are not included in the number of physicians.
- Interns and residents are not included.
Deviation from the definition: Interns and residents are not included.
Break in time series:
- In 2009 (01/01/2010), there is a break in the series for physicians because of a change in the statistical methodology. Therefore the evolution between 2008 and 2009 must not be interpreted as a decrease in the number of professionals. (The change in methodology had an impact of about -1.3% on the number of doctors in metropolitan France in 2009).
- In 2011 (01/01/2012), there is a new break in the time series because of the change in the data source.
Georgia
Source of data: Data are based on annual statistical reports collected from health establishments to the Ministry of Health and include both, public and private sectors and also facilities working under other Ministries, such as Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Internal Affairs, Ministry of Defence.
Reference period: 31 December 2012
Coverage: The provided data cover all regions except separatist regions, Abkhazia and South Osetia. Data for those two regions are unavailable.
Note: 10% increase in 2012 is due to an essential change of the data collection tool related to the health human resources.
Germany
Source of data: German Medical Association, Medical practitioner statistics; http://www.gbe-bund.de or http://www.baek.de.
Reference period: 31st December.
Coverage:
- Data contain the number of practising physicians and physicians for whom their medical education is a prerequisite for the execution of the job, e.g. physicians working in administration, research and industry positions (head-count data).
- The data exclude dentists, stomatologists, qualified physicians working abroad, as well as unemployed and retired physicians.
- Excluded are students who have not yet graduated.
Greece
Source of data: Hygiene Divisions and Sections attached to prefectures, Athens Medical Association and Pireas Medical Association. Annual Doctors and Dentists survey, http://www.statistics.gr/portal/page/portal/ESYE/PAGE-themes?p_param=A2103.
Reference period: 31st December.
Deviation from the definition: Unemployed physicians are included.
Hungary
Data not available.
Iceland
Source of data:
- 2003 and onwards: The Directorate of Health, The Register of Physicians.
- Until 2002: The Directorate of Health. Data from inpatient care institutions, health centres and The State Social Security Institute.
Reference period: 31st December.
Coverage:
- Head count data.
- Includes those physicians who are 70 years old or younger with permanent residence and registered domicile in Iceland (Icelanders or foreigners).
- Excludes retired professionals and professionals working abroad.
- May include a very small number of non-practising physicians.
- The peak in 2001 is due to “change of source and methodology”.
Break in time series: Break in series in 2005 is due to revision of methodology. The methodology was altered in 2009 in such a way that registered domicile is now taken into account when counting the number of physicians, not only permanent residence. Figures for previous years, back to 2005, were revised accordingly.
Ireland
Source of data: Medical Council of Ireland.
Reference period: Figures refer to 31st December.
Coverage: Up to 2013:- In an attempt to estimate for professionally active physicians, figures refer to all persons with addresses in the Republic of Ireland (i.e. excludes physicians working abroad), aged under 70 years old, who have entered and maintained their name as fully registered doctors in the Register of Medical Practitioners, regardless of the area in which they are engaged or whether or not they are practising medicine. Registration is a pre-requisite for practice in Ireland. Break in Series 2014: From 2014, data refer to doctors registered with the Medical Council of Ireland who, in the last 12 months, have declared themselves active and who have worked in Ireland either full or part-time.
Israel
Source of data: The data are based on the Physicians License Registry maintained by the Medical Professions Division and the Health Information Division in the Ministry of Health, for which the demographic information and date of death are periodically updated from the Population Registry at the Ministry of Interior.
Reference period: End of the year.
Coverage:
- Data are for licensed physicians under 65 years old (including residents). The data include only physicians with valid licenses at the end of each reference year.
- Physicians working abroad or working in other fields than health cannot be excluded from the data. In 2008, 11.3% of the physicians licensed to practice (recorded in the Physicians License Registry) were not resident in Israel for more than 12 months.
- At the beginning of the 1990s, there was a large immigration wave from the Former USSR countries to Israel which included a large number of physicians who received a license to work in Israel.
Note: The statistical data for Israel are supplied by and under the responsibility of the relevant Israeli authorities. The use of such data by the OECD is without prejudice to the status of the Golan Heights, East Jerusalem and Israeli settlements in the West Bank under the terms of international law.
Italy
Source of data: ISTAT, Labour Force Survey. http://www.istat.it/it/archivio/8263.
Reference period: Annual average.
Coverage: Sample survey.
- Professionally active physicians are individuals who have indicated that they work as a physician and for whom their medical education is a prerequisite for the execution of the job. In this way physicians providing services directly to patients and physicians not providing services to patients (working in administration, research, and public health) are both included.
Estimation method: Estimation from the sample survey. Data are affected by the statistical error due to the sample design.
Kazakhstan
Source: Ministry of Health of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
Reference period: data as of December 31.
Latvia
Source of data:
- Since 2005: Health Inspectorate of Latvia; Medical Persons' Register.
- 2004 and earlier: Health Statistics and Medical Technologies State Agency; Statistical Report No.17 "Report About Medical Staff").
Reference period: 31 December. Break in series: 2005: Change in data source.
Lithuania
Source of data: Health Information Centre of Institute of Hygiene, data of entire annual survey of health establishments. Report “Health Statistics of Lithuania”, available from http://sic.hi.lt/html/en/hsl.htm.
Reference period: 31st December.
Coverage: The number of professionally active physicians at the end of the year includes all active physicians working in health care, public health, health administration, health education and research institutions (public or private), including health care institutions under other ministries than the Ministry of Health. Interns and residents, i.e. physicians in postgraduate training, are also included. The number of physicians excludes: physicians working in social institutions (nursing homes belonging to social sector, the number of these physicians is very small), physicians working outside the country; physicians on the retired list and not practising or unemployed; physicians working outside health services, e.g. employed in industry, etc.
Luxembourg
Source of data: Direction de la Sante - Service des statistiques. Register of doctors and health professionals.
Reference period: 31st December.
Coverage:
- Head count data. Excludes non-practising physicians, retired professionals and professionals working abroad. Includes professionals who are foreigners.
- Retired physicians are not included. However, the end of activity of self-employed physicians is often noted with some time lag.
- Includes stomatologists/dental surgeons.
Malta
Source of data: Registers of Medical council. Data is extracted from the Registers by the Directorate for Health Information & Research.
Reference period: 31st December. Data not available till 2008. Figures are being quoted for the first time for year ending 2009. Break in Series: Data on physicians from 2011 onwards had been updated by the Medical Council and more accurate figures have been provided.
Montenegro
Source of data: The source for all data submitted is the Institute of Public Health. Some additional information can be found in Health Statistical Yearbooks available at http://www.ijzcg.me/
Reference period: December 31st.
Coverage: Only physicians from public sector.
Netherlands
Source of data: Data based on BIG register (register of (para)medical professions) and SSB database (micro-integrated database of Statistics Netherlands with data from the municipal register, tax register, social security, and business register).
Coverage:
- Data refer to physicians who:
- are licensed to practice;
- live and work in the Netherlands;
- for employees: are active in a health- or social care sector or a health-care related sector; or
- for self-employed specialists: are economically active (their license requires that they have been practising – not necessarily fulltime – in the past five years).
- List of NACE codes used for health- or social care and health-care related sectors: NACE v1: 851, 853, 2441, 2442, 331, 5146, 5231, 5232, 5248.2 (opticians), 6022 (part of transport for healthcare), 6602.3, 6602.4 (pension fund part for health care occupations), 6603 (part of health insurance funds and companies), 7310.3 (medical and pharmacological research and development), 745 (temporary work companies; very important for nurses, caring personnel and physiotherapists), 7522 (Ministry of Defense, including military hospital), 7523.2 (part of medical personnel for prisons, including prison hospital), 753 (compulsory health care insurance, operations for exceptional medical expenses act), 8022, 8030, 9304, 9305.
- NACE v2: 86, 87, 88, 212, 266, 325, 4646, 4773, 4774, 4778.2, 4932, 6530.3, 6530.9, 6512, 7211.2 + 7219.3 (R&D for health, medical products or pharmaceutical processes), 782, (8412 will be included when NACE v2 is available in SSB; Regulation of the activities of providing health care, education, cultural services and other social services, excluding social security), 8422, 8423.2, 843, 8532, 854, 9313, 9609.
Norway
Source of data: Statistics Norway; Statistics on health-care personnel. Administrative registers. See www.ssb.no/hesospers_en/.
Reference period: 3rd week of November.
Coverage: 2008-dd: Excludes non-practising physicians, retired professionals and professionals working abroad. The figures include professionals who are foreigners. All professionally active physicians in all industries; also, physicians for whom their medical education is NOT a prerequisite for the execution of the job.
Poland
Source of data: Ministry of Health, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of National Defence and Central Statistical Office.
Reference period: 31st December.
Coverage: Physicians are categorised as practising or professionally active physicians based on the primary workplace.
- Practising physicians.
- Physicians for whom the primary workplace is a university, units of state or local self-government administration or the National Health Fund are included.
- Since 2010 physicians working in social security funds are included.
Break in time series: 2010.
Portugal
Data not available. (Data available only for all physicians licensed to practice.)
Republic of Moldova
Source of data: Ministry of Health of the Republic of Moldova, National Centre for Health Management, Annual statistical report N17 “On staff and cadres of health institutions”. http://cnms.md/areas/statistics/anyar/.
Reference period: Data as of December 31.
Coverage: Data exclude Transnistria.
Deviation from the definition: there is no statistics in the country on Physicians for whom their medical education is a prerequisite for the execution of the job (for example, physicians working in pharmaceutical companies). Foreign physicians are not included. Interns and residents are not included.
Note: Physicians working as faculty at the State University of Medicine and Pharmacy are included. Public health employees involved in development and implementation of health promotion and public health laws and regulations are also included in the category.
Romania
Source of data: National Institute of Statistics, Activity of Sanitary Units – annual survey performed by NIS.
Reference period: data as of 31st December.
Coverage:
- From 1970 to 1998, data refer only to the public sector.
- From 1999, the data cover all physicians from public and private sector.
- Physicians (ISCO/COR 2221) are defined as the persons who have completed studies in medicine at the university level and who are licensed to practice. Physicians’ tasks include: medical or surgical treatment for diagnosed illness of patients, conducting medical examination, making diagnosis and giving treatment diagnosed illnesses, disorders or injuries, establish curative and preventive medical measurement, relished reports and participate to scientific communication in medical field.
- The physicians who work in education field as teachers and physicians from health insurance field are not included. It was impossible to exclude physicians who have administrative function in health units because separate registrations do not exist.
- Were excluded from physicians: students, unemployed physicians in health field, retirement physicians, and physicians working abroad, physicians working in sales field even if they work in medical sales (ex. medical drugs). Break in the series: 1999.
Russian Federation
Source of data: Annual reporting form ?17 «Information about the medical and pharmaceutical personnel", Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation.
Reference period: 31 December.
Coverage: Includes only data for medical institutions of the Ministry of Health. Data from institutions of other ministries and private sector are not included.
Deviation from the definition: Interns and resident physicians are not included.
San Marino
Data not available.
Serbia
Source of data: Institute of Public Health of Serbia, National register on health care human resources. Data as of December 31. http://www.batut.org.rs/.
Coverage: Data for Kosovo-Metohija province are not included in the coverage of data for the Republic of Serbia. Data from health institutions under other ministries (military services, prisons, social services) than the Ministry of Health are not included. Data from private health sector are not included.
Slovakia
Source of data: National Health Information Center. Annual Report M (MZ SR) 1- 01 on structure and number of health professionals for all years (2008 – 2012) except 2007, Register of Health Professionals for year 2007.
Reference period: 31st December.
Break in time series:
- In 2007, change of data source: Register of Health Professionals.
- In 2008, change of data source: Annual Report M (MZ SR) 1- 01 on structure and number of health professionals was used again.
Slovenia
Source of data: National Institute of Public Health, Slovenia; National Health Care Providers Database.
Reference period: 31st December.
Coverage:
- Professionally active physicians include practising physicians working in the health-care sector and physicians working at HP4, 6.1, 6.3-6.9 and HP7 providers.
- The National Health Care Providers Database is a registry with total (100 %) coverage of health workers.
Spain
Source of data: National Statistics Institute (INE). Economically Active Population Survey (several issues). http://www.ine.es/jaxi/menu.do?type=pcaxis&path=/t22/e308_mnu&file=inebase&N=&L=0.
Reference period: Annual average. Three-year moving averages (e.g. data reported in 1996 is an average of 1995-1997).
Coverage:
- The data set for professionally active physicians, nurses and pharmacists has been updated with better estimates in 2010. In this way, all the series follow the methodological definition. Before the correction, some figures were in line with the definition of ‘economically active professionals’ whose values could include unemployed professionals.
- The number of professionally active physicians was obtained by calculating the number of physicians employed in the health sector as well as in remaining sectors of NACE rev.2 since 2009, and similarly with NACE Rev.1 and NACE Rev1.1 before 2009. Thus, the ‘Professionally active’ data correspond to physicians regardless of NACE sector where they are working.
- Medical interns/residents are included in the data on health employment if they worked at least one hour in return for remuneration during the week prior to the interview (Survey reference week).
- Up to 2010, the data include “physicians and odontologists” from the National Occupations Classification (CNO-94 Spain, code 212) on 3-digit level. The information on 4-digit level is not available. The CNO-94 code 212 is the Spanish equivalence of ISCO-88 codes 2221 (medical doctors) and 2222 (dentists). It is not possible to separate “physicians and odontologists” on 3-digit level.
- From 2011 onwards the data are classified according to CNO-11 Spain, code 211. The CNO-11 code 211 is the Spanish equivalence of ISCO-08 code 221 (medical doctors). Dentists are not included in the ‘professionally active’ figures since 2011.
- Data analysis over time should be carried out with caution. Data are obtained from a survey and fluctuations in the data can occur for a number of reasons, one of them being the sampling errors. These variations can lead to false assumptions about trends. We advise users of time series data to carefully explore the relevant issues before drawing any conclusions about the reasons for year-on-year changes.
- During the first quarter of 2005 various changes have been introduced into the Economically Active Population Survey:
1. New variables have been included in accordance with Eurostat (Statistical Office of the European Communities) requirements, set forth in Regulation 2257/2003.
2. A centralised procedure has been implemented for the process of the telephone interviews.
3. With the goal of further standardising the survey process, the questions of the questionnaire have been reformulated.
Deviation from the definition: Data include dentists until 2010.
Estimation method: In 2014, data series have been updated with Spanish population figures imported from Census 2011 and recalculated by using three-year moving averages in order to reduce the large year-to-year fluctuations in data derived from the LFS. The number reported in 1996 is an average of 1995-1997; the number for 2012 is an average of 2011-2013.
Sweden
Source of data: National Board of Health and Welfare, National Planning Support (NPS) register.
Reference period: 1st November.
Coverage:
- In addition to the NACE-codes used to identify practicing physicians the NACE-codes: 75.1 - Public authorities 80.3 - Higher education establishments are used to identify professionals.
- 100 per cent coverage.
Switzerland
Source of data: FSO Federal Statistical Office, Neuchatel; Swiss Medical Association (FMH), Bern; medical statistics of physicians; yearly census.
Break in time series:
- 1989: No clear explanation was found in the documents of the FMH.
- 2000: The time series starting 2000 also includes active physicians who are not members of the Swiss Medical Association.
- 2003: The time series starting 2003 includes active physicians with EU citizenship residence in Switzerland whose diploma and postgraduate qualification have been officially recognised according to the bilateral agreements between Switzerland and the European Union.

TFYR Macedonia
Source of data: Institute for Public Health-Skopje. Report for health staff in health sector (3-00-60).
Reference period: 31st December.
Coverage: From 2006 data includes both, public and private sectors. Up until 2005, the data sets for private sector are incomplete, because private sector physicians were not sending reports regularly to the relevant organisations. Since 2006, more strict controls for regular reporting were put into practice by the Ministry of Health, which resulted in very accurate report sending and vastly improved evidence of health personnel. Also, the new software from 2006 comprises private sector physicians. Private sector is not included in year 2005 and earlier. Break in the series: 2006, stricter reinforcement of reporting with inclusion of private sector.
Turkey
Source of data:
- From 2000 onwards: General Directorate for Health Services, Ministry of Health.
- Up to 1999: Health Statistics Yearbook - Ministry of Health.
Coverage:
- All sectors (Ministry of Health, University, Private and Other) are included.
- Others (Other public establishments and local administrations) have been included since 2006. MoND-affiliated facilities are not included until 2011.
- Practitioners who are retired or work abroad are not included. However, practitioners acting as managers are included.
Break in time series:
- MoND-affiliated facilities have been included since 2012.
Turkmenistan
Source of data: Report from of the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan. ? 17 “Health employment”
Reference period: 31 December.
Coverage: Includes data from institutions under the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan, data from other Ministries or sectors not included.
Ukraine
Source of data: Centre of Health Statistics, Ministry of Health, Report form ? 17 “Health employment” of the Ministry of Health, other agencies and private entities.
Reference period: 31 December.
Deviation from the definition: data on foreign physicians are not included.
Break in time series: 2009, before 2009 data included only health professionals working in the institutions reporting to the Ministry of Health, starting from 2009 data coverage is complete.
United Kingdom
Data not available.
Uzbekistan
Source of data: Institute of Health and Medical Statistics, the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Uzbekistan, reporting form 15-SSV “Report on Health personnel by categories”.
Reference period: 31 December.
Coverage: data include personnel working within the system of the Ministry of Health only.