Do you ever think about becoming a nurse? Nursing is definitely a good career since it makes a good impact on the world and promises comfortable living. Most nurses get adequate salary depending on their workplace and specialities. But a nurse practitioner salary is relatively high.
This profession has distinctive levels that eventually will determine the amount of salary they deserve. Naturally, nurse practitioners often get paid higher than common nurses. How come they can get a higher salary than other nurses?
- 1 Difference between Nurse and Nurse Practitioner
- 2 The Most Popular Nurse Practitioner Specialties
- 3 Factors that Determine the Nurse Practitioner Salary
- 4 How Much Is the Average Nurse Practitioner Salary?
Difference between Nurse and Nurse Practitioner
To answer the question of why the salary of nurse practitioners is higher than common nurses, you need to know the difference between these two professions first. Nurses in the entry-level are entitled as the registered nurses or RN, while the nurse practitioners are the advanced level nurses.
Registered Nurses (RN)
To start your journey as a nurse, at least you have to complete an undergraduate degree which is BSN. In some fields, nurses with ASN degrees are eligible to hire. BSN is the initials of Bachelor of Science in Nursing while ASN is Associate Degree in Nursing.
It takes 4 years to complete BSN programs while ASN takes around 3 years to gain the degree. Both BSN and ASN graduate students need to pass the standard rate of NCLEX which is the National Licensure Examination before applying for an entry-level position.
Nurse Practitioners (NP)
We can consider the nurse practitioner as an advanced career in nursing. The minimum degree required to become a nurse practitioner is a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN). After finishing the BSN programs and working as RN, you can proceed to pursue a graduate degree in MSN.
Ideally, the master program only takes 2 years to complete, especially for a full-time student. However, a part-time student who works while studying probably needs longer periods of time to finish the master program.
Basically, the main task of a nurse practitioner is to interpret diagnostic or laboratory tests, analyze patients’ needs, prescribe treatment plans. In completing their tasks, some nurse practitioners are under the supervision of physicians but some can act independently.
It is fair that the nurse practitioner salary is much higher than the salary of BSN or ASN degree nurses, considering how much money and how long the time they invested to gain the master degree. Are you interested in a nurse practitioner career?
The Most Popular Nurse Practitioner Specialties
Completing MSN programs will lead you to a brighter career as a nurse practitioner. In this case, you can determine one of the nursing specialities in your career path. Here are the popular specialities for nurse practitioners.
This nurse practitioner is responsible for guiding patients in pregnancy and delivery. Nowadays, the high demand for nurse midwives increases the chance for you to hire easily. In addition, the nurse-midwife can earn good compensation.
Family Nurse Practitioner
Among all types of nursing specialities, the family nurse practitioner is the most popular one. They have to provide special and principal care to patients of all ages. You might find an employer who is willing to pay a nurse practitioner salary higher than the average.
Those who like dealing with children should apply to pick this speciality. The pediatric nurse main tasks include primary care to infants and adolescents, psychopharmacology, and child development.
Gerontology Nurse Practitioner
This one deals with elderly people in managing and evaluating their lifespan. They give acute care as well to the old patients.
Critical Care Nurse Practitioner
Critical care nurses specially handle patients that require critical care. Most of them work at trauma centres or critical care units.
Neonatal Nurse Practitioner
Commonly neonatal nurses take care of patients before and after delivery. They are nurses in charge of the neonatal unit of a hospital. Their responsibility includes pediatric health, taking care of the newborn at high risk, and pharmacology.
Considering the extensive clinical tasks of a neonatal nurse, this profession is considered as the top salary of nurse practitioner among all the specialities.
Aesthetic Nurse Practitioner
The aesthetic nurse specializes in taking care of patients who have cosmetics issues or people who want to improve their appearance. They give treatment and counselling to people who need help in appearance improvement.
Factors that Determine the Nurse Practitioner Salary
Whatever type of speciality in nursing programs you take, it can affect the number of earnings you get. So, how much do nurse practitioners make? There are several factors that determine how much money you can earn from becoming a nurse practitioner.
Education and degree definitely hold the primary key to determine how much salary you can get. As mentioned before, the minimum degree to apply for a nurse practitioner is MSN. Some employers put a high standard to be a nurse practitioner in their company or institution.
The requirements of becoming a nurse practitioner are either MSN or DNP. DNP is an acronym of Doctor of Nursing Practice which is a doctoral degree in nursing school. These two distinctive level degrees cause different salaries for sure.
Years of Experience
In business, employers tend to take your experience into consideration. The longer work experience you have, there is the possibility you will get paid higher than the nurse practitioner average salary.
Different states and cities certainly have different standards of minimum wage. The amount of salary surely depends on where you work. It indirectly affects the cost of living as well.
Type of Specialty
Any specialities require different concentration of clinical works. It can be a factor causing a distinctive salary range among nurse practitioners. For instance, the neonatal nurse practitioner who has extensive duties tends to get a higher salary than other nurse practitioners.
How Much Is the Average Nurse Practitioner Salary?
It is true that the salary depends on several factors mentioned above. Despite those factors, you can refer to the average salary of the nurse practitioner. The nurse practitioners’ average annual salary per year is around $115,800.
Well, a piece of information about nurse practitioner salary might inspire you to be a proficient nurse practitioner. You can even pick one of the specialities that meet your interest. One thing for sure, the speciality you choose will determine your salary as well