US has fewer physicians, hospital beds than similar countries, KFF finds

The U.S. has fewer active physicians and hospital beds per capita compared to similar countries like France or Canada, according to a March 27 analysis from Kaiser Family Foundation.

KFF examined data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development on the healthcare workforce, hospital resources and at-risk populations for the U.S, 11 countries of similar size and wealth, and five countries with a large volume of COVID-19 patients. 

Three findings:

1. When ranked by the number of practicing physicians per 1,000 people for 2017 or the nearest available year's data, the U.S. came in 11th out of 12 similar countries. The U.S. has 2.6 practicing physicians per 1,000 population, only surpassing Japan's rate.

2. The U.S. had slightly more active nurses (17.5 per 1,000 population) than similar countries in 2017. 

3. When ranking 15 countries based on number of hospital beds, the U.S. came in No. 12 at 2.8 total beds per 1,000 population. South Korea had the most at 12 beds per 1,000, while Sweden had the least at 2.3 beds per 1,000.

To view the full analysis, click here.


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