Reports 2019/20

Health workers workplace and newly graduated health workers affiliation with working life

This publication is in Norwegian only.

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Necessary and sufficient staffing is a prerequisite for a well-functioning health service. New treatment methods and higher life expectancy will increase the demand for health care professionals, especially health workers. Therefore, monitoring the changes in number and composition of health personnel is a matter of importance.

This report describes the coverage of health care workers in Norway in 2016 and highlights the recent graduate health workers involvement with the labour market after completing education. The goal is to uncover trends that can give a better understanding of the present and future supply of personnel with a health worker education.

The first part of the analysis applies cross-sectional data of employed health workers to describe the labour market situation among all employed health workers in Norway in 2016. In the second part, the goal is to reveal trends that can provide a better understanding of the current employment situation. We use data on graduates from 2005 and 2013 and study their employment status in the years after graduation.

Analyses show that health workers is a woman-dominated profession in 2016. Men make up almost 4 percent of all health workers. Furthermore, more than half of all employed health workers were over the age of 45, while the proportion of health workers under the age of 30 was 10 per cent.

There were 89 778 employed persons educated as health workers in 2016. This corresponds to 74 per cent of everyone who formally completed the education. Most health workers worked in health and care services, of which 70 per cent were employed in municipal health and care services, while just 8 per cent worked in specialist health services. Two of three health professionals worked part-time.

In 2016, 26 per cent of all people with a health worker education were without a job. Lasting disability pension was the reason most of them were unemployed. Among health workers aged between 45 and 59, 10 per cent received disability pension.

Among all employed health workers in 2016, there were 12,000 immigrants. Just over half of the immigrants received their education in Norway, many of them from Thailand and the Philippines. Those who came to Norway fully educated were mainly from the Philippines and Sweden.

There were some changes in the education for health workers in 2006. The content and duration of the education and the composition of theory and practice are different for the two classes of graduates we have compared. These changes may have affected both the age for the graduates from 2013 and their work choices three years after completing the education.

The comparison of the two classes shows that the proportion of younger health workers increased for the 2013 graduates, while there were fewer over the age of 25. Graduates from 2013 chose a job within the health and care service more frequently, while at the same time a larger share worked part-time.

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