Background Urinary tract infection is a common disease in the community. There is a huge problem in management of these cases in general practice, which mainly attributed to misdiagnosis and misuse of empirical therapy. Objective The aim of this study is to determine the distribution of uropathogens in Northern Iraq together with their in vitro susceptibility profiles to antimicrobial agents Methods The study included urine samples submitted for culture and antibiotic susceptibility examination for inpatient and outpatient cases. Mosul samples were from inpatient admitted to Al-Salam teaching hospital for a one year period of 2005. Duhok samples were from outpatients sent to the Laboratory of one of the two main private hospital in the city for a one year period of 2006. All samples were tested microbiologically by standard procedures and cultured quantitatively. Colony count was estimated after overnight incubation at 35°C. Results A total of 1692 and 842 samples were sent for urine culture for inpatient and out patient cases of which 31% and 60.6% of them showed a significant bacteruria respectively. Escherichia coli was the commonest bacteria isolated represented above 40% of total isolates in both groups. The other main bacterial isolates from inpatients were Klebsiella spp. 18.9%, Staphylococcus. aureus 8.6%, Psendomonas aeruginosa 7.0% and Proteus spp 6.5%, while in out patients were; according to frequency, Proteus spp. 30.7%, Enterococcus. fecalis 7.8% and Staphylococcus saprophyticus 7.4%. The study showed a high emerging resistance for most commonly used antibiotics in general practice; with overall increase in antibiotic resistance profile mainly among inpatients. Empirical treatment was chosen as a general guideline for treating urinary tract infections in the North of Iraq. Conclusions The data provide much needed information on the prevalence of antimicrobial resistance amongst pathogens currently causing UTI in hospitals and community in the North of Iraq