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What Is the State of Nursing Around the Globe?

Written by Rose Torrento on Wednesday, March 22, 2017 Posted in Industry News


If you're a qualified nurse, you can practice in almost any country in the world. Your opportunities are endless!


So, how do you decide where your career should take you? Salary is certainly one factor to consider.

As you know, salaries vary depending on your certification, location, experience, and specialization. But the following five countries pay the highest average nurses' salaries:

  1. Luxembourg: $82,000
  2. United States: $70,000
  3. Ireland: $64,000
  4. Australia: $56,000
  5. Denmark: $54,000

If you’re interested in working as a travel nurse abroad, pay is typically lower just as it is for staff nurses. If your motivation for traveling abroad is to make more money, you may want to reconsider. It also can take up to six to eight months to get approved, so going abroad as a travel nurse can take considerable planning and a strong desire to be in the country you’re set on traveling to.

Money, as you know, isn't everything. What are standard working conditions like in foreign countries? What schedule could you expect to work?

Working conditions

Nursing is more than a job. For most of us, it's a way of life. Job satisfaction and support are essential. Caring for others comes naturally, but you should also consider your own well-being and happiness.

Some countries on the best wages list are in Europe, and it may come as no surprise these next countries, according to the Euspert article, have the best working condition standards:

  1. Norway
  2. Switzerland
  3. The Netherlands
  4. Belgium
  5. Germany, Finland, and Spain


So, now that you know where you can make the highest salary and work in the best environment, how do you take your nursing license with you? For comprehensive and precise information on foreign nursing rules, contact the national nursing association in the country you’re interested in. The International Council of Nurses provides a list of members in every participating country.

Even if licensed and educated in one country, traveling nurses may still be subject to nursing exams and evaluations: Each country has established rules set forth by regulatory nursing boards.

Benefits of international nursing

Nursing in other countries exposes you to new ideas as well as better methods, policies, and procedures you can use to empower your fellow health care providers. Your expertise and knowledge in health care are based on training, practice, and experience, which put you in an excellent position to exert influence on health care policies.

In addition, many international humanitarian groups have health care-related missions. Those in organizations like the World Health Organization help raise awareness for international nursing and provide resources specific to nursing. They’re aware of opportunities in the world where nurses are needed the most.

Working as an international nurse positions you to meet other health care professionals dedicated to the common long-term goal of improving health care globally.

The well-rounded experience you can gain while traveling overseas as a nurse allows you the opportunity to better advocate for improving patient care as well as raise health care standards in both your home country and countries you visit.

Nursing is an ever-changing world, especially for travel nurses. Let us help you navigate it: For answers to all your career questions, call the professionals at Health Providers Choice at 888-299-9800 or contact us online.

About the Author

Rose Torrento

Rose Torrento

Rosemarie Torrento has worked in health care for more than 26 years, beginning as a registered nurse in 1988. Early in her nursing career, Torrento worked as a freelance contract nurse before accepting a position in nursing administration. During her 17-year tenure in that role, she oversaw nursing employment and travel nurse contracting at a Level 1 Trauma Hospital in Michigan. Understanding the challenges travel nurses faced, Torrento founded Health Providers Choice Inc. (HPC) in 2003. Through Torrento’s extensive experience and her role as President and CEO, HPC provides travel placement of registered nurses and allied health professionals to hospital systems nationally.