Information on North Carolina health professionals can be easily accessed online to inform decision-making. This information can now be customized by AHEC region!

sheps health workforce nc

Sheps Health Workforce NC launched an updated version of its online data visualization tool at The new website allows users to explore and download data on NC’s health workforce from 2000 to 2017. Users can customize maps and charts at the county, AHEC, and state level for 19 types of health professionals.

“Most of the decisions that affect the supply of health professionals in North Carolina—including opening a new school, changing scope of practice regulations, or expanding student loan repayment programs—are made at the state or local level,” said Julie Spero, director of Sheps Health Workforce NC. “Our aim is to make it easy to find information that helps people make those decisions.”

A quick look at the web site shows that:

  • In 2017, there were more than 100,000 active, licensed registered nurses in practice in North Carolina.
  • 61% of NC’s pharmacists are female.
  • NC’s nurse practitioner (NP) workforce has become more diverse, with 13% identifying as an underrepresented minority (Black, Hispanic, American Indian/AK Native) in 2017, compared to 7% in 2000.
  • 25% of the psychologists in NC are age 65 or older.
  • Moore County has 3.7 hospitalists per 10,000 population, the highest rate of any county in the state.

“Until we launched the online data visualization tool, people had to make a special request for data at this level of detail,” Spero said. “Since then, I’ve had people call me to request data, and as soon as I pick up the phone, they’ve already found what they needed on our website.”

“We’ve always been proud of our Health Professions Data System because it is the foundation of so much of what we do,” Spero continued. “We’re excited about our new identity—Sheps Health Workforce NC—because we’ve grown from our beginnings as a data system into a comprehensive state resource that conducts research and analysis. This broader role is reflected in the new name.”

About Sheps Health Workforce NC

Sheps Health Workforce NC is part of the Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research at UNC-Chapel Hill and the home of the North Carolina Health Professions Data System (HPDS). The HPDS is the oldest, continuously maintained state health workforce data system in the United States, with annual data on 19 different health professions for each year from 1979 to the present. In addition to maintaining the data system, Sheps Health Workforce NC provides timely, objective data and analyses to inform health workforce policy for the state of North Carolina. The HPDS is a collaboration between participating health professional licensing boards, the Sheps Center, and the NC Area Health Education Centers Program (NC AHEC).  For more information, please contact