If the salary is an expression of recognition, it often looks miserable in systemically relevant professions. That was shown again in the Corona crisis. During the pandemic, those affected risked their health for their fellow human beings (more than usual), sometimes voluntarily, sometimes by force. There were often wages for the work that others would not even leave the home office for.
According to the Federal Statistical Office, many people in systemically important occupations earn significantly less than the average monthly salary of 3327 euros for skilled workers. But the wage gap is also large internationally. This can be seen when comparing the salaries of nurses in OECD countries. In the statistics of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the range extends from 28,000 to 114,000 euros per year.
On the one hand, this reflects the large differences in international salary levels. However, if one compares the average salary of nursing staff at hospitals with that of the respective population as a whole, it becomes clear how differently well female nurses are paid. In many countries it is only enough for a little more than the general average income. In some states, however, nurses earn almost twice as much.
# 10 Canada
Canadian hospital nurses earned an average of $ 60,714 per year in 2018, according to the OECD. That was the 10th highest value in the statistics for which 28 members of the organization were compared. Canada ranked twelfth across the OECD in terms of general average wages in 2018 at $ 48,849. So nurses were paid a little better in a country comparison. The data refer to wages adjusted for purchasing power in US dollars.
# 9 Israel
The salary for nursing staff in hospitals in Israel is comparatively princely. The country was ranked 23rd in the OECD’s total median income in 2018 ($ 37,655). But nurses made it to ninth place. They reportedly earned an average of $ 62,225, around two-thirds more than the total population. At this value, Israel could almost keep up with the leader in this ranking.
# 8 Switzerland
It looks completely different in Switzerland. There, the salaries of nurses lag behind the high wage level. In 2018, the Alpine republic was only eighth in the OECD (63,692 dollars). In the general wage statistics, however, Switzerland came third with an average of $ 64,109. So nurses earned less than the average wage. This means that Switzerland has a sad special position in the top 10 of the OECD.
# 7 Ireland
Irish nurses in hospitals, on the other hand, are paid above average. All workers on the island averaged $ 47,952 in 2018. That meant 13th place in the OECD behind Germany and Canada. In terms of care salaries, however, Ireland last came in seventh with $ 64,924.
# 6 Australia
For Australia, the OECD recently only had figures for 2017. The annual earnings of $ 69,315 would have meant sixth in 2018. That roughly corresponds to the continent’s overall ranking in general median incomes: seventh place with $ 53,349.
# 5 Netherlands
Nurses in the Netherlands earned an average of $ 71,497 in 2018. That meant fifth place in the OECD. The national median income that year was $ 54,262 (sixth).
# 4 Iceland
The nursing staff in Icelandic hospitals are paid comparatively poorly. In the OECD statistics it was enough for fourth place with $ 74,413. The Icelanders were the top earners in the community in 2018 with an average income of $ 66,504 a year.
# 3 United States
Nurses in the US are paid slightly better across the OECD than the entire working population of the country. She came fourth in annual income ($ 63,093). For the nursing staff in hospitals, it was enough for the third place with 77,670 dollars.
# 2 Belgium
Belgium was only eighth in the OECD in terms of general median income at $ 52,080 in 2018. Nurses, on the other hand, came in second with $ 89,445. This put them almost 72 percent above the general wage level in their country. The front runner was able to surpass that.
# 1 Luxembourg
Nurses from Luxembourg are by far the top earners in the OECD. They earned an average of $ 114,064 a year in 2018. This was not only due to the generally high wage level in the Grand Duchy, which ranked second behind Iceland in the OECD. Nurses in Luxembourg were paid around 75 percent more than the average wage earner ($ 65,449). The organization only took 28 member countries into account in its comparison of nursing salaries. Germany and Denmark, among others, were missing.
According to the Federal Statistical Office, nurses in German hospitals have recently earned around 42,000 euros. With an annual income equivalent to around $ 47,630, Germany would be in 16th place in the OECD statistics, behind the United Kingdom and ahead of Turkey, Finland and Japan. In terms of average income, Germany was in eleventh place in 2018. As expected, there was the least amount of money for nurses in Hungary and Slovakia. In addition to Mexico, they generally have the lowest wages in the OECD. In both countries, however, nurses were around a fifth above the general average salary.