Which Countries Do Immigrant Healthcare Workers Come From?

We breakdown the more than 2.8 million immigrant healthcare workers in the United States by country of birth to see where they hail from.

Top Countries of Birth for Immigrant Healthcare Workers

Country of Birth Number of Healthcare Workers Share of All Immigrant Healthcare Workers Share of All Healthcare Workers
Philippines 357,300 13.5% 2.2%
Mexico 283,200 10.7% 1.7%
India 183,700 7.0% 1.1%
Jamaica 115,900 4.4% 0.7%
Haiti 102,100 3.9% 0.6%
China 91,300 3.5% 0.6%
Cuba 75,600 2.9% 0.5%
Dominican Republic 74,400 2.8% 0.4%
Vietnam 66,400 2.5% 0.4%
Nigeria 62,800 2.4% 0.4%
Source: 2018 American Community Survey, 1-year sample.

Using the most recent data available from the American Community Survey, we analyzed data on the country of birth for more than 2.8 million foreign-born healthcare workers in the United States. The results show that great diversity among the immigrant healthcare workforce.

Overall, however, the Philippines was the most popular country of birth for immigrant healthcare workers overall, with more than 357,000 Filipino immigrants working in healthcare. This includes almost 143,000 Filipino immigrant registered nurses, making the Philippines also the most common country of birth for foreign-born registered nurses in the United States. Together, Filipino immigrants made up almost 1 out of 20 registered nurses.

Top Countries of Birth for Immigrant Registered Nurses

Country of Birth Number of Workers Share of All Immigrant RNs Share of All RNs
Philippines 142,800 29.3% 4.5%
India 32,400 6.7% 1.0%
Nigeria 21,200 4.4% 0.7%
Jamaica 21,200 4.3% 0.7%
Mexico 18,900 3.9% 0.6%
Source: 2018 American Community Survey, 1-year sample.

India was by far the most common country of origin for immigrant physicians and surgeons, with more than 56,000 physicians and surgeons. Indian immigrants today make up more than 1 in 20 physicians and surgeons in the United States. Overall, India was the third most popular country of birth for immigrant healthcare workers, with almost 184,000 healthcare workers in the United States hailing from India.

Top Countries of Birth for Immigrant Physicians and Surgeons

Country of Birth Number of Physicians and Surgeons Share of All Immigrant Physicians and Surgeons Share of All Physicians and Surgeons
India 56,500 21.9% 6.1%
China 13,600 5.3% 1.5%
Pakistan 12,600 4.9% 1.4%
Philippines 12,100 4.7% 1.3%
Canada 10,300 4.0% 1.1%
Source: 2018 American Community Survey, 1-year sample.

With 133,000 workers, Mexico was the most common country of birth for immigrant home health aides in the United States. Overall, Mexico was the second most popular country of birth for immigrant healthcare workers, with more than 283,000 workers.

Top Countries of Birth for Immigrant Home Health Aides

Country of Birth Number of Workers Share of All Immigrant Home Health Aides Share of All Home Health Aides
Mexico 133,300 15.5% 3.9%
Philippines 87,600 10.2% 2.5%
Jamaica 59,300 6.9% 1.7%
Haiti 59,300 6.9% 1.7%
Dominican Republic 53,400 6.2% 1.6%
Source: 2018 American Community Survey, 1-year sample.

For more information and data on immigration in the United States in the time of COVID-19, check out our research portal of Immigration and Covid-19. If you have any specific questions about our data, please reach out to us at info@newamericaneconomy.org.

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New American Economy is a bipartisan research and advocacy organization fighting for smart federal, state, and local immigration policies that help grow our economy and create jobs for all Americans. More…