Table 2

Annual growth of the NP and physician workforces, measured by yearly percentage change, median percentage change and CAGR (%), in six countries, 2005–2015 (or years available)

YearUSACanadaThe NetherlandsAustraliaNew ZealandIreland
PA (%)*R† (%)R (%)PA (%)PA (%)R (%)R (%)R (%)R (%)R (%)R (%)PA (%)PA (%)
Median PC7.57.7219.
CAGR7.46.1 (1)1.916.73.327.8 (2)2.915.53.827.32.813.3 (3)2.4
  • Sources: authors’ calculations, based on the following data sources (Dutch Nurse Specialist Registry. Unpublished data on Nurse Specialists (Verpleegkundig Specialisten), 2009 to 2015, received upon request. 2015).38–41 ,45 ,51–54 ,58–67 The OECD statistics on physicians are based on the following primary data sources: USA: AMA; Canada: CIHI; the Netherlands: The BIG register, Australia: AIHW, New Zealand: Medical Council Medical Register.56 ,57

  • Caveats: USA: *data on professionally active NPs do not include self-employed.39 †Data on registered NPs are estimates, exact numbers are not publicly available,38 the Netherlands: data on NS (NS, R) include ∼10 invalid cases per year used as test accounts (range 8–12) in the database that cannot be filtered out (estimated 8 cases yearly in 2009/2010/2011/2012 and 12 in 2013/2014/2015) (personal communication, with registry advisor at Verpleegkundig Specialisten Register, 29 January 2016), Canada: OECD data on MDs, based on two combined data sources, which may overstate the number of physicians, since interns and residents may be registered twice, Australia: break in OECD time series data on MDs in 2010, due to change of data holders.56 ,57

  • –, not available; AIHW, Australian Institute of Health and Welfare; AMA, American Medical Association; CAGR, compound annual growth rate, (1)=CAGR (2004/2014) calculated based on 2004–2014 data (2004 data used in lieu of missing 2005 data) (2)=CAGR (2010–2015), 2009–2010 was excluded due to excessive growth rate caused by small numbers (CAGR 2009–2015: 64.3%, not shown), (3)=CAGR (2011–2014), 2010–2011 data excluded (CAGR 2010–2014: 38.8%, not shown); CIHI, Canadian Institute for Health Information; MD, medical doctors/physicians; NP, nurse practitioners; NS, nurse specialists; OECD, Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development; P, practising; PA, professionally active; PC, percentage change; R, registered.