Americans trust nurses the most out of 23 major professions, new poll finds: ‘At the forefront’

Nurses play a ‘crucial role’ and spend the most time with patients, an expert says

Americans trust nurses the most out of 23 major professions

Americans place their trust in nurses even more than doctors, as revealed by Gallup’s 2023 Honesty and Ethics poll. This poll assessed the level of trust U.S. adults have in 23 major professions.

Nurses claim the highest position as the most trusted profession, with 78% of participating Americans stating that they adhere to “very high” or “high” standards for honesty and ethics, as outlined in a press release from Gallup.

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For the 22nd consecutive year, nurses have secured the top spot as the most trustworthy profession.

Despite a 7-percentage-point dip in their trust ranking since 2019, nurses still maintain a higher level of trust than dentists (with a 59% trust rating in 2023) and medical doctors (with a 56% trust ranking).

In the health care trust rankings, professions ranking lower included pharmacists (55%), psychiatrists (36%), and chiropractors (33%).

The poll highlighted that pharmacists experienced a record-low trust ranking this year.


College graduates expressed higher levels of trust for most professions.

In the realm of health care, significant disparities were observed among college graduates and those who did not graduate. The variations were notable for dentists (70% among college graduates and 53% for those who did not graduate), psychiatrists (47% versus 31%), pharmacists (64% versus 50%), and medical doctors (64% versus 52%).

Gallup has been conducting this poll since 1976, with annual updates initiated in 1990, as stated in the release.

For the latest ranking, researchers surveyed approximately 800 U.S. adults between December 1 and December 20, 2023.

Annette Wysocki, Ph.D., the dean of the University at Buffalo School of Nursing, who was not part of the poll, emphasized that nurses play a “crucial role” as healthcare providers who spend the most time with patients.

“In moments of vulnerability, patients disclose details to nurses that they’ve never shared with any other health care provider and trust that nurses will advocate for them,” Wysocki conveyed to Fox News Digital.


“With the highest level of interaction among all health care professionals involved in a patient’s care, nurses become the patient’s voice and adeptly navigate health care systems to ensure the best outcomes for them,” Wysocki explained further.

“Thus, research demonstrates that baccalaureate-prepared nurses lower the odds of hospital mortality by 25%.”

Regina Foley, chief nurse executive at Hackensack Meridian Health in New Jersey, offered an external response to Gallup’s findings. “Nurses are at the forefront of patient care, which allows for deep and meaningful connections with patients,” she conveyed to Fox News Digital.

“They not only provide extraordinary clinical care, but nurses also act as advocates, intermediaries, and counselors,” Foley added.

“With clear competence and remarkable compassion, our nurses are there for our patients in their darkest, most challenging hours.”

“Given the crucial role they play in a patient’s care, well-being, education, and recovery, it is no surprise that nursing has been consistently recognized as the most trusted profession,” she added.

Lisbeth Votruba, an RN with AvaSure, a Michigan-based company that offers real-time patient monitoring and virtual nursing services, is a third-generation nurse and is proud of the profession’s trustworthiness.

“In the past, nurses did not influence to match that level of trust,” Votruba conveyed to Fox News Digital.

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“I see trends to show this is changing. Many of the IT-focused healthcare conferences are adding a nursing track for the first time in 2024,” she added.

“There are more and more nurses like myself who sit on the senior leadership team of technology companies to ensure the voices of nurses and patients are heard as technology is being designed,” she expressed.

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