How much do addiction nurses make? The job of an addiction nurse is one that comes with high earning potential. But just because these nurses are working towards a rewarding career doesn’t mean they’re making the same amount as other healthcare professionals. In fact, addiction nurses in the United States earn significantly less than their non-nursing counterparts. The below average salary for addiction nurses has to do with more than just being an emotionally demanding job — it’s also due to the competition among numerous agencies and hospitals who are looking to fill nursing positions at a lower salary.
What Is an Addiction Nurse Salary?
An addiction specialist is a highly trained professional who works alongside a doctor to help people in recovery. These are people who are seeking help for a substance-related illness, like an opioid-related painkiller addiction or alcohol-related depression. These specialties include substance-related mental illness and drug addiction. The average salary for an addiction specialist in the United States is $140,190. However, this number can vary greatly depending on a variety of factors, including the individual’s education, years of experience, and location of work. The following are some of the more common salary figures for addiction specialists across the country.
How Much Do Addiction Nurses Earn?
Like all healthcare professionals, addiction nurses make money through Medicare, Medicaid, and other government-backed insurance plans. These paychecks also come with perks and benefits, including generous paid vacations, paid sick days, and health care coverage. The exact salary of an addiction nurse can vary based on a number of things, including the individual’s experience, specialty, and location within an agency or hospital. The average salary for addiction nurses in the United States is $56,280.
If you’re interested in being an addiction specialist, there are plenty of opportunities to make a good living as an after-hours or evening shift worker. Because many addiction facilities are staffed 24/7, there’s no shortage of work. As an after-hours or evening shift specialist, you could work in a hospital, detoxification center, or other settings where there aren’t any doctors or other healthcare professionals on staff during regular hours. This is one area where the non-nursing side of the field can benefit from what we in the nursing field call “comparable worth.” In other words, we question how much healthcare workers like psychologists or social workers make, as they might be doing similar work, and yet receive less pay. The following are some examples where the same can be said about addiction nurses: Specialty Addiction Specialists: The average salary for an addiction specialist is $142,920. Many specialties pay higher salaries because they are highly specialized, like addictions to drugs and alcohol, or mental illness. The average salary for an addiction specialist is $142,920. Many specialties pay higher salaries because they are highly specialized, like addictions to drugs and alcohol, or mental illness. Mental Health Specialists: The average salary for a mental health specialist is $96,520. This is likely to increase as more state and local governments enact “right to work” laws that removed labor restrictions for non-unionized workers.
The Truth About Addiction Nurse Salaries
While the average salary for addiction nurses is $56,280, there are many positions that earn much less. In some areas of the country, an addiction nurse’s salary may depend on the type of facility they work in. These may include private facilities operated by faith-based organizations where the government doesn’t regulate the amount of money given to members, or government-run drug and alcohol treatment centers. In other areas, the salary is set by the agency that hired the nurse, and can vary from state to state and even region to region. An example of one area where the average salary for an addiction nurse is much less is in the South. In this region, an addiction specialist makes an average of $42,816, compared to $76,429 in the Northeast and $67,898 in the West.
The Bottom Line
As an addiction specialist, you’ll make a substantial salary, enjoy benefits, and have plenty of opportunity to help people in recovery. The real question is: How much do addiction specialists make? The answer is: A lot. An average salary of $140,190 is likely a conservative figure, as is the vast majority of the income of an addiction specialist. Even before taxes are taken into account, a career as an addiction specialist can be a highly lucrative profession.