Pay for Correctional nurses?

  1. I'm just curious as to the salary for correctional nurses? I"m a new grad, and have an interview scheduled with a correctional facility in gatesville texas. they do 12 hr shifts from 445am-515pm (whewwwwwwwww that's an early morning and a really long day! lol) i understand some of the duties, but i didnt want to ask about pay so i wondered what range of pay you all make? if you are willing to say...thanks for the input! :angel2:
  2. Visit TashaLPN2006RN2012 profile page

    About TashaLPN2006RN2012

    Joined: Aug '05; Posts: 1,730; Likes: 482
    Registered Nurse: Juvenile Corrections; from US
    Specialty: 8 year(s) of experience in home health/podiatry/neurology/case mgmt


  3. by   ex1140 my opinion, those are bad hours...I can see working 7p to 7a or 7a to 7p, but 4a to 5p...sounds exhausting. In terms of are going for an interview so don't be afraid to discuss salary...and be honest about what you feel you should make....Corrections, USUALLY pays more than nursing homes and hositals, but not in all areas.

    Who is currently running the medical department? Because if it's a private contractor they can be outbid and you could find yourself in the hands of a new company that dosen't want to give you a raise. I have worked corrections for a little over a year...and the prison I work for has changed hands 2 times. Some of the nurses haven't gotten a raise in over two years. The prison I work for is being run by two groups the State of Florida and MHS...and from what I understand the later will be pulling out this year. Which only leaves the State of Florida that means that salaries will decrease...and nurses are going to walk.

    The good thing about working corrections is the pace, on most days or nights it can be a lot slower than that of a hospital or nursing home. However, if you have no experience in those areas then I would strongly suggest getting some before working in correctional nursing, because a correctional nurse needs strong assessment skills. Currently, I make $20.50 an hour...I am due for raise...and I am looking for another job because I only want the prison as extra income at this time, because I'm going back to school this year.
    Working with men is easier than working with women...I would suggest that you do your homework because although, this can be a rewarding area of nursing it is not for everyone.
    Last edit by ex1140 on Mar 5, '07
  4. by   texascowgirl
    if you are working in Gatesville, you are working at a TDCJ unit and in this region of the country, health care is managed by UTMB. UTMB has the payscale right on the website! did you not apply thru their online jobsite?
  5. by   military spouse
    I work at a contracted facility in MD and make $27.50 per-diem. Pay is less than the hospital, but most days are better. I believe new grads are starting around $22 here. Good luck!!
  6. by   High Wall U - RN
    I work in Ely, NV and make a little over $33/hr. We are very remote so the state has maxed out the pay scale in an effort to get and keep nurses who don't mind being 200 miles away from the nearest Wal-mart. The raises we get are mandated by the legislature (6% in the last 2 years). I feel better about the quality of care I'm able to provide in the prison setting as compared to my high stress shifts in acute care with chronic short staffing and several high acuity patients. Correctional nursing isn't for everyone though and the only way to really know if you're suited to it is to try it. A good sense of humor is a big plus. I never planned to work in a just sort of happened and I'm so glad I found it. It's interesting, challenging and never routine. I've been a correctional nurse for almost 12 years in 2 states and I love it. I hope you do too. Good luck.
    Last edit by High Wall U - RN on Mar 17, '07 : Reason: clarification
  7. by   rose red RN
    At Clark County Detention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada LPNs start at $20/hr RNs $30/hr Charge Nurse $34/hr.
  8. by   LtLilRed
    I will just add that in Columbus,OH at the county jail(there are two jails and one holds 650, the other 2200), RN's are currently making about $28 plus 0.65 shift differential. LPN's about $22. The strange thing is all RNs or all LPNs all make the same wage. I've been there a year and make the same that the other RN makes that has been there for ten years. Something is strange about that. Also, sheriff deputies make even more than RN's when they top out and get a bigger shift dif! Strange but true.
  9. by   diveRN
    US Penitentiary at Merced was hiring a year or two ago. Beni's looked nice, but pay was only $34.00/hr. New grad RNs are starting at considerably more than that in hospitals around the valley.
  10. by   LtLilRed
    I also meant to add that staffing agencies are currently paying RN's a minimum of 33 an hour. I make 35. Sometimes they go higher when they are truly desperate. They tend to let people work without experience as well I'm more concerned that without experience you do not want to be thrown into working at a prison with one day or less of orientation.
  11. by   nadjjaa
    I work in a Kansas City suburb at a county Juvenile Detention Center and make $22.50 an hour. I got my RN license 4 months ago. My job requires a lot of autonomy (I am the only medical personnel on staff during the day) and very good assessment skills. This isn't so much to diagnose people with stuff that is wrong with them, but to figure out if they're faking. Heart attacks, asthma attacks, seizures....they love to fake these things to get trips to the hospital. And then there are kids who really are having seizures, etc and need to be cared for.

    I think that someone new to nursing CAN work in this field. I do. I have a lot of questions but my boss is a phone call away, and I have two doctors I can call. I also have the internet and a huge medical library. It took me about 3 months to learn what I need to know.

    I would suggest starting out in a juvenile or adult detention center, community corrections center, or jail. DO NOT start your career working in a prison. You want to have experience dealing with the people and such before begin caring for hardened criminals...

    I was a corrections officer once upon a time, which gave me a slight advantage.

    Sounds like I make a lot less than the rest of you folks, but around here, my pay is comparable to the hospital and slightly better than most nursing homes. However, I work 8 hour shifts (or 12s when I want to) and have weekends and evenings off. I get off at 1430! I don't have to lift anyone, and I don't have to put up with demanding, rude, abusive, crabby patients. I give medical care to people but I don't have to pretend that I am their friend. I am here to make you well and keep you healthy, and that is IT!

    I love it so far. Next I think I will move in to Forensic nursing.

    Hope this helps.
  12. by   medsurgrnco
    I was offered a job at a detention facility that would pay more than $3.50/hr less than my last hospital job (between the salary and shift differential) and the paid time off is also less. But I'm considering it as I believe it would be a better work environment than the hospitals around here. I tend to wait for clear interest from the employer before asking about pay.
  13. by   Promin
    Quote from diveRN
    US Penitentiary at Merced was hiring a year or two ago. Beni's looked nice, but pay was only $34.00/hr. New grad RNs are starting at considerably more than that in hospitals around the valley.
    That's exactly what hospitals pay to new grads in Central Valley.
  14. by   ibnathan
    I just got hired on at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. My starting pay is 42.02 an hour. I just left the ICU were I was only getting paid 26.50 an hour plus shift differential.