Pay at Huntsville area hospitals

  1. 0
    Hello all,

    I'm sure something about this is posted somewhere on here, but I'll ask again anyway. What is the typical starting pay at Huntsville Hospital? I've got 8 months experience at a Level I trauma center ER in Atlanta. I'm originally from North Alabama, and I am just really tired of the Metro Atlanta area and would like to move back home. I'm just really not sure if I am willing to take a pay cut in order to move back. I checked with UAB, and they say their minimum starting pay is around $19.00 an hour. I figure HH pays less than that, but I was curious how much. Also, does anyone know what Decatur General or Athens_limestone are paying now? I worked at Athens a few years ago, but not as a RN so I'm not sure what they pay.

    You know how it is, you get used to making a certain amount of money and its hard to change, although I've had about enough to make the sacrifice.:innerconf

    Thanks for your help.
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  4. 0
    Quote from mandasueRN
    Hello all,

    I'm sure something about this is posted somewhere on here, but I'll ask again anyway. What is the typical starting pay at Huntsville Hospital? I've got 8 months experience at a Level I trauma center ER in Atlanta. I'm originally from North Alabama, and I am just really tired of the Metro Atlanta area and would like to move back home. I'm just really not sure if I am willing to take a pay cut in order to move back. I checked with UAB, and they say their minimum starting pay is around $19.00 an hour. I figure HH pays less than that, but I was curious how much. Also, does anyone know what Decatur General or Athens_limestone are paying now? I worked at Athens a few years ago, but not as a RN so I'm not sure what they pay.

    You know how it is, you get used to making a certain amount of money and its hard to change, although I've had about enough to make the sacrifice.:innerconf

    Thanks for your help.

    I am a student, employed at Huntsville Hospital. I have very carefully and casually asked several RNs not what they personally make, but what the starting pay for all nurses is, roughly. Usually they just kind of grimace and don't say anything. To me, that's kind of not a good sign...lol. I've talked with several non-nursing personnel about it, and I've heard starting pay figures for Huntsville area RNs that are usually around $16-18/hr. Some have even said as low as $14 (and that's for RNs, not LPNs!). From what I have read on what RNs nationally tend to make, that just seems awfully low. According to the current edition of the Calhoun Community College catalog, "the starting base salary range for a new graduate Associate Degree nurse is approximately $15.00 - 18.00/hr." So...I suppose you have to take that for however accurate it really is.

    What specifically do you not like about Atlanta, if you don't mind me asking? The only reason I ask is because I've considered moving there myself after I'm done with school. Do you mind if I ask what the pay for new nurses is like in that area? You can PM me if you would prefer to. Thanks!
  5. 0
    Quote from Jedi of Zen

    What specifically do you not like about Atlanta, if you don't mind me asking? The only reason I ask is because I've considered moving there myself after I'm done with school. Do you mind if I ask what the pay for new nurses is like in that area? You can PM me if you would prefer to. Thanks!
    Yikes, I can't believe RN pay is really that low. I'm a relatively new nurse, with 1 yr now of experience as a RN (I was an EMT-Intermediate prior to becoming an RN for years) and I started out at $27.00 an hour, non-benefit at the states largest hospital. New nurses there start at about $21.00 an hour with benefits. With three or more years of experience you can start at $30.00 plus. I think that is pretty typical of the area. Agency nurses make even more.

    You asked what I didn't like about Atlanta--well, a few different things going on have made me consider making the move back to AL. For one thing, the hospital that I work for is the charity hospital for the Atlanta metro area, really the entire state. The hospital is in a really bad financial situation right now, and there are rumors that the hospital could close it's doors by the end of the year. So I figure if I have to start over again anyway, I might as well make the most of it. Also, working in Atlanta is challenging, even if you work at some of the other hospitals in the city. Atlanta has a very high homeless population, high uninsured and unemployment rates and a whole lot of really sick people who either don't get adequate health care or don't care enough to. I can only speak from the experience at the hospital I work for, but it is not unusual for us to have at 6:1 or 7:1 ratio in the ER. There are days that I don't feel safe--I worked hard to get my RN and I don't want to lose it. However, I will say I am proud of where I work and I am proud of the difference that I do occasionally make. When I tell people around here where I work, they usually say "Wow, that place must really be something." I know I will be a stronger RN because of working there. I had a couple of bad days at work this week, you know the ones that leave you saying to yourself, "What was I thinking?"

    Basically, don't rule Atlanta out if you are considering a job there. There 60+ hospitals in the metro area, so there is a lot to choose from. I live south of Atlanta down I-85 and the town I live in is great. In the city of Atlanta, the hospitals include Piedmont Hospital --which is basically known as the "rich peoples" hospital, Atlanta Medical Center--they have a Level II trauma center, Emory Crawford-Long hospital--real great place to work if your into stroke or cardiac medicine, there are the Children's Hospitals of Atlanta if peds are your thing and from what I understand are a great place to work, Emory University Hospital is in Dekalb Co, Northside Hospital is up GA 400 north of Atlanta and has the busiest L&D in the city along with St. Joseph's which is a private Catholic hospital and has magnet status.

    Hope this info is helpful. One thing is for sure, you can really make some money in this area, especially if you live outside of Atlanta where the cost of living isn't as high as in the city. Good luck with school. Although Alabama will always be home to me, I just don't know if I can take that $10.00/hr pay cut.
  6. 0
    Hey Manda,

    Thanks for all of that info! $27 starting out...that's awesome. Again, if you don't mind me asking - are you an ADN or BSN nurse? I'm wondering if your EMT background had anything to do with you getting hired at that rate, or if that is simply more or less a routine starting-pay figure at your facility. Either way, that is very cool.

    I grew up mostly in this area, and then lived between Nashville, TN and Minneapolis, MN for several years. Then moved back home when I decided to start nursing school. My parents and some extended family all live here, and I would like to be as close as possible to them; but aside from that I have no qualms about looking elsewhere for better-paying employment. Not that life is all about money, but money is important nevertheless. Plus I like to see snow in the winter though I doubt Atlanta is any better than Hsv in that regard. lol. Anyway, I mention all of that simply to say that I think I can relate to your predicament - balancing family and career priorities.

    Aside from job pursuits, is there anything else you particularly have liked or disliked about living in Atlanta? If you have any other questions about Huntsville Hospital, btw, feel free. They recently opened the new ER and apparently are going to be expanding more in years to come.
    Last edit by Jedi of Zen on Sep 22, '07
  7. 0
    Hi Jedi,

    Thanks for your info. I'm actually and ASN nurse and the facility I work for pays both ASN and BSN the same right now, although they say they will be eventually be going to the "clinical ladder" concept, so at some time or another there will be a slight difference in pay. Base pay as a new RN--and no, unfortunately my EMS experience didn't make any difference--is $27.00 without benefits. I place emphasis on the on-benefit part, because I get paid that $7.00 an hour more because I did not take the health insurance and life/disability insurance. It works out great for me because I already have insurance through my husband. If you take the insurance, base pay starts at around $20.00 an hour I think. I also don't accrue paid time off or sick leave as a non-benefit. You can still take time off, you just don't get paid for it. I work three 12 hr shifts and I am off 4 days a week, so it's almost like a mini vacation every week--if I want more time off, I just schedule my days I want off. We do self-scheduling, which is absolutely wonderful.

    As far as living in the Atlanta area...well, it has it's ups and downs. The worst thing is the TRAFFIC. The traffic sucks! I actually live about 40 miles south of Atlanta and my drive to work at 6 am isn't to bad--as long as there are no MVCs along the way! You couldn't pay me money to live on the northside of ATL, where 2 hr + commutes are common to travel about the same distance I do. There are alot of fun things to do here, like the new aquarium, the World of Coke, Braves games, theater, concerts, great shopping. Its just really, really crowded here, I think that is one of the things that really gets on my nerves.

    BTW, in three years here, I have not seen a lick of snow, and I'll swear to my dying day that it is hotter here too.
  8. 0
    Quote from mandasueRN
    Hi Jedi,

    Thanks for your info. I'm actually and ASN nurse and the facility I work for pays both ASN and BSN the same right now, although they say they will be eventually be going to the "clinical ladder" concept, so at some time or another there will be a slight difference in pay. Base pay as a new RN--and no, unfortunately my EMS experience didn't make any difference--is $27.00 without benefits. I place emphasis on the on-benefit part, because I get paid that $7.00 an hour more because I did not take the health insurance and life/disability insurance. It works out great for me because I already have insurance through my husband. If you take the insurance, base pay starts at around $20.00 an hour I think. I also don't accrue paid time off or sick leave as a non-benefit. You can still take time off, you just don't get paid for it. I work three 12 hr shifts and I am off 4 days a week, so it's almost like a mini vacation every week--if I want more time off, I just schedule my days I want off. We do self-scheduling, which is absolutely wonderful.

    As far as living in the Atlanta area...well, it has it's ups and downs. The worst thing is the TRAFFIC. The traffic sucks! I actually live about 40 miles south of Atlanta and my drive to work at 6 am isn't to bad--as long as there are no MVCs along the way! You couldn't pay me money to live on the northside of ATL, where 2 hr + commutes are common to travel about the same distance I do. There are alot of fun things to do here, like the new aquarium, the World of Coke, Braves games, theater, concerts, great shopping. Its just really, really crowded here, I think that is one of the things that really gets on my nerves.

    BTW, in three years here, I have not seen a lick of snow, and I'll swear to my dying day that it is hotter here too.

    True - you make a good point about the benefits. I can see how that puts that figure into some perspective.

    I'm assuming that if you did get a job at HH and declined benefits as you do now, then of course your take-home pay would be a little bit more than $17-18/hr, or whatever it would be otherwise. Plus, with you being an experienced RN, perhaps that would also raise your starting wage. But I'd bet it would still be a big cut compared to what you earn now.

    On the other hand, with the nursing shortage that exists right now, I've always wondered how much bargaining power individual nurses actually have when it comes to getting hired at the pay-rate that you would reasonably prefer. Perhaps it's a factor that varies depending on geography and specific facilities.

    I actually spoke with a patient at work recently who happened to be an RN who was about to retire. She told me about how she had gotten a job at Vanderbilt Hospital in Nashville several years ago, and during the interview they basically asked her straight out to name her price as far as what her pay was going to be! Of course, she'd already had many many years of experience behind her, so I'm sure that played a role in it. But still...I was like, wow...

    As far as hospital facilities go, here in Huntsville of course, you only have two - Crestwood and Huntsville - and I have often heard that the obvious lack of local hospital-based employer competition is a big part of the reason why HH can get away with paying their nurses so low. Which, unfortunately, makes sense, to me anyway.

    No snow in 3 years, huh...I think we've had at least a half inch or so in the same time frame here...lol...
    Last edit by Jedi of Zen on Sep 22, '07
  9. 0
    Hi all!

    I am a new grad RN at Huntsville Hospital, starting base pay is $ 18.25 and there is a $ 4 shift diff for nights. That is for full benefits also. After you get a year's experiance you can go to weekends and make $ 30.00 per hour base. If you have any questions about new grad orientation at HH, let me know!



    April
  10. 0
    BLECH !!!!!!! $18.25 an hour for HH, you've got to be joking
  11. 0
    April-I do have a question...I want to work post partum...do they hire new grads to this area? I am applying to Calhoun for next year.

    Michelle
  12. 0
    Quote from aprildawn
    Hi all!

    I am a new grad RN at Huntsville Hospital, starting base pay is $ 18.25 and there is a $ 4 shift diff for nights. That is for full benefits also. After you get a year's experiance you can go to weekends and make $ 30.00 per hour base. If you have any questions about new grad orientation at HH, let me know!



    April
    Heck, they have it good! I started at HH in 2000 and my starting pay at the time was $13.75!!! We got an across the board increase to $15 shortly thereafter, and when I left after a couple of years I had made it up to $19.00 base...It's terrible what hospitals in north Alabama pay their nurses, but it's a supply and demand thing.

    WAY too many nursing schools within a 100 mile radius churning out nurses...no shortage means no chance for demanding better pay.


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