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Registered nurses made up 30 percent of hospital employment in May 2019

April 27, 2020

Hospital employees are on the front lines of any health crisis. Registered nurses was by far the largest occupation in hospitals in May 2019, with over 1.8 million jobs, which was 30 percent of total hospital employment. After registered nurses, clinical laboratory technologists and technicians (with employment of 159,580) and radiologic technologists and technicians (125,310) were among the largest healthcare practitioners and technical occupations in hospitals.

 Employment and annual mean wages for the largest occupations in hospitals, May 2019
Occupation Employment Annual mean wage

Management occupations

Medical and health services managers

136,030 $123,930

Business and financial operations occupations

Project management specialists and business operations specialists, all other

29,140 70,290

Computer and mathematical occupations

Computer systems analysts

24,620 87,110

Life, physical, and social science occupations

Medical scientists, except epidemiologists

22,760 87,680

Community and social service occupations

Substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors

30,380 51,130

Healthcare social workers

50,430 65,600

Healthcare practitioners and technical occupations

Dietitians and nutritionists

21,920 63,450


82,050 127,210

Physician assistants

31,300 113,420

Occupational therapists

35,780 86,140

Physical therapists

64,840 91,250

Respiratory therapists

108,420 64,190

Registered nurses

1,816,170 79,400

Nurse practitioners

51,120 115,770

Physicians, all other; and ophthalmologists, except pediatric

121,370 176,830

Clinical laboratory technologists and technicians

159,580 56,840

Cardiovascular technologists and technicians

44,060 58,390

Diagnostic medical sonographers

44,420 75,930

Radiologic technologists and technicians

125,310 63,980

Magnetic resonance imaging technologists

23,100 73,470

Emergency medical technicians and paramedics

48,680 39,760

Pharmacy technicians

69,270 40,000

Psychiatric technicians

44,190 38,730

Surgical technologists

79,720 49,810

Licensed practical and licensed vocational nurses

102,570 46,790

Medical dosimetrists, medical records specialists, and health technologists and technicians, all other

122,000 49,330

Healthcare support occupations

Home health and personal care aides

21,910 29,680

Nursing assistants

406,350 32,550


38,690 30,740

Psychiatric aides

26,560 35,080

Medical assistants

107,780 37,170

Medical equipment preparers

40,680 39,620


48,820 35,300

Healthcare support workers, all other

25,910 37,650

Protective service occupations

Security guards

43,640 37,880

Food preparation and serving related occupations

Cooks, institution and cafeteria

34,700 32,990

Food servers, nonrestaurant

46,460 29,940

Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance occupations

Janitors and cleaners, except maids and housekeeping cleaners

77,890 30,690

Maids and housekeeping cleaners

101,080 30,390

Office and administrative support occupations

First-line supervisors of office and administrative support workers

48,990 65,170

Billing and posting clerks

42,870 40,840

Customer service representatives

67,880 37,070

Interviewers, except eligibility and loan

76,310 36,700

Receptionists and information clerks

44,820 33,370

Executive secretaries and executive administrative assistants

23,080 59,080

Medical secretaries and administrative assistants

163,510 38,770

Secretaries and administrative assistants, except legal, medical, and executive

58,960 41,310

Office clerks, general

65,670 37,340

Installation, maintenance, and repair occupations

Maintenance and repair workers, general

33,580 46,670

Transportation and material moving occupations

Stockers and order fillers

23,970 35,880

Registered nurses had an annual mean wage of $79,400 in hospitals. Annual mean wages in hospitals were $56,840 for clinical laboratory technologists and technicians and $63,980 for radiologic technologists and technicians.

The largest healthcare support occupations in hospitals were nursing assistants (406,350) and medical assistants (107,780). These occupations had annual mean wages in hospitals of $32,550 and $37,170, respectively.

Of the nearly 6.1 million hospital jobs in May 2019, 56 percent were in healthcare practitioners and technical occupations, and an additional 13 percent were in healthcare support occupations.

The remaining 32 percent of hospital jobs were in occupations outside of the healthcare occupational groups. Some of these jobs had duties directly related to providing healthcare services, while others provided support services, such as building cleaning or food service.

These data are from the Occupational Employment Statistics program. To learn more, see data for hospitals. Estimates of occupational employment and wages for hospitals are available for private sector, state government, and local government ownership. For these and other data see OES Data.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Registered nurses made up 30 percent of hospital employment in May 2019 at (visited June 22, 2024).

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