An appropriate hourly rate of pay for a Registered Nurse at the bedside? - page 3

I know that cost of living is said to vary from one area to the next but with few exceptions the cost of living is actually comparable. I have lived or journeyed to many areas in the us and can... Read More

  1. by   wildtime88
    OK, then here is a question for you. If there was no more bedside nurses would there be a nursing profession?

    In those other areas you mentioned if they disappeared would there still be a nursing profession. Now remember that bedside nurses have helped educate nurses for centuries. You can also be a researcher without ever having went to nursing school. Can you run a hospital without a nurse in administration. There are many hospitals that are doing just that. Health care administation does not require the title of nurse.
    Last edit by wildtime88 on Dec 30, '01
  2. by   Q.
    Wild, my point is that I don't believe that bedside nursing is the be-all, end-all profession of the year that is the single most important, stressful job in the entire universe.

    Open your mind.
  3. by   wildtime88
    I never said it was. I just said it is the back bone of the nursing profession and it contains the overwelming majority of the nursing profession.

    If bedside nursing was not the primary goal of a nurse, then clinicals would be optional.
  4. by   funnynurse
    hey wildtime,
    80,000 a year sounds pretty damn good to me! We are worth it!
    ( if only in our dreams!)
  5. by   thisnurse
    some nurses SHOULD make 80k/year.
    SOME nurses SHJULD make 20k/year.

    to think that for our responsibilities and expertiese so many nurses feel that 20 something an hour is adequate is insane.
    for the most part i think that these nurses are the ones who are providing a second income. surely not the breadwinners.

    suzy you said:
    My husband is in a pretty high role in the IS field and doesn't make $80,000 - he makes decisions that effect the company's bottom dollar and investment activity - which is about as important to that company as life is to an individual Joe.

    this analogy confuses me. are you saying that your husband should make more than you do because his job is more important?

    and think about this:
    how much would YOU pay an experienced nurse to care for your husband if his life were hanging in the balance? 20 bucks an hour?

    i worked in burn/trauma the other night. we had a 13 year old girl who was burned over 90% of her body. she is in a coma and vented. as you are aware injuries like this can go bad in a matter of seconds. constant monitoring and quick decisions are SO important in cases like this.
    how much do you think her mom and dad would be willing to pay a nurse that specializes in that kind of care? what would you be willing to pay if it were your daughter?
    im not talking about myself. i am med surg. not demeaning myself but i am not familiar with burns and treatment of that kind. in that unit im not saying i deserve to make 80k/year but the nurse who was caring for her sure did. and im sorry but this is a lot more important than decisions that affect bottom dollars.

    so many of you dont have a problem paying a plumber outrageous wages to repair your plumbing but you, who repair body mind and spirit feel that you deserve less money than one who fixes your pipes. its not good enough to say they SHOULDNT get paid because they DO. how many plumbers do you think say...well sir thats a lot of money. i think ill do the job for half because im really not worth it? when a plumber bursts a pipe he can fix his mistake. can you fix yours? can he go to jail for bursting that pipe? you make a mistake in nursing. its a bit different but somehow we deserve less.
    i dont understand this.

    and for the life of me i will NEVER understand why some nurses feel that they are called to a higher power so they deserve less money or that money is some sort of evil that demeans our profession or lessens our ability to provide quality care.
    if you have entered nursing to answer a call then why do you expect to be paid at all for your calling?
    priests get paid dont they?

    i find it annoying that wildtime is "picked on" because he speaks up for nurses. somehow nurses think its wrong to make as much money as you can. he takes a lot of slack for saying ....

    this is what i do and this is what i charge to do it.
    hire me or not.

    why does this annoy so many of you? if we all had that kind of mentality our profession wouldnt be in the shape its in.
  6. by   Q.
    ThisNurse:

    I don't think Wild is picked on. He loves a debate as do I, and as long as we can debate without being childish (which we usually do) things are fine. Picked on he is NOT.

    As far as my analogy: I was trying to point out that the role my husband is in is about as important in HIS profession as my role in MY profession - and HE'S not making nearly $80,000 - why should I? Again, where does that leave nurses with advanced degrees, in education or research? Making what an Internal Medicine doc makes? Does that seem right?

    Not to me it doesnt. I think 20 something/hour (relative to the cost of living) is fine for a new grad - with raises subsequent with experience, etc.

    I'm sorry, but $80,000 a year is ludicrious in my opinion.
  7. by   wildtime88
    so Susy just out of curiosity what do you think a physician should get paid? If you need to pay them by specialty then be my guess and start listing them.

    How much do you think a CEO should get paid?

    How about a CFO?

    How about the adminstater's secretary?

    How about an accountant?

    How about a nursing instructer?

    How about a dietician?

    How about an occupational therapist?

    How about a physical therapists?

    How about an intranet administrator?

    How about an airline pilot?

    How about an airplane mechanic?
  8. by   Q.
    I don't know or CARE what some of them should make. You are missing the point. Too many nurses care about what every other person makes, and then tries to compare a NURSING job to a BUSINESS or TEACHING job, and argue that since a network admin or an accountant didn't code an infant for 30minutes, that they are somehow not as important as a nurse. Not true at all, in my eyes.

    My point, and the reason for my opinion, is that there are nurses out there who feel (or at least write as if they do) that those professions should make LESS than nurses.

    Should they, Wildtime? Is nursing the most stressful, horrible job in America? Is there nothing else more important? Is there not another job that has overtime, call hours? Or are only the jobs that deal with the human condition important? What about the military? Being a soldier? Is that important? And I'm not talking about officers, I'm talking about your general enlisted Joe. Some nurses make more than them. What do you think of that?

    I agree, jobs that deal with lives are. But don't forget, those other jobs that deal with inanimate things, like internet admin, CEO's, accountants, are all important to people too and the companies that adminster them.

    And BTW, physicians ARE paid by speciality, that is not a new concept.
  9. by   Q.
    Oh and Wild-

    back to the other post about our agency who don't scrub in or circulate for C-sections;

    It's not our policy that stops them, it's their agency. They claim that they may not be on the floor often enough to be proficient in the OR (in Labor and Delivery).

    Sooooooo...they are paid $30 an hour and then we have to call in our OWN staff at time and half and call-in bonus to take over their assignment when a C-section is needed. What a frickin waste.
  10. by   thisnurse
    suzy
    if we do not compare our salaries with the salaries of other professions then what do we compare them to?

    i agree that 80k for a new grad is ludicrious as it would be in most professions. but i am not talking about the new grad.

    how do you feel about a specialty nurse with 20 years experience? should that nurse make 80?

    i now understand your analogy and the point you are making but i still dont think we should look at our pay rate like that either.

    what annoys me the most is that out of the big piece of hospital pie, whats our share?

    so many of us sell ourselves short. i didnt enter this profession to get rich but i would like to be comfortable.

    let me use the tired old plumber analogy.
    i dont see any of them struggling to support their families. they seem very comfortable to me. what is a new plumber making these days?
    what kind of degree is required for that?
    why are we less than that?
    how about auto mechanics?

    society puts a money value on the importance of a profession, sad but true, look where we fall in that list.
  11. by   wildtime88
    Susy, that is a good question. By your standards, where does a nurse fit on the list?

    Would it also surprise you to know that intranet administrators in hospitals make twice as much as nurses?

    Dieticians make more money.

    In fact there is a lot of people who make more money than nurses and in many cases nurses have to perform many of the same duties that they do.

    It is not so much nurses saying that another profession should make less than nurses. It is nurses saying that the duties and responsibilities that we perform deserve the same financial consideration. If that profession has less duties and ultimate responsibilities, then yes we should make more.

    As far as the other jobs that should get greater pay, then they need to speak out and take action. We need to focus on our problems and what we have to deal with on a daily basis. If we ever get our houses in order then we will be stronger and better able to help others in need and this includes our patients.

    Susy, you your self left hospital nursing except for picking of time here and there. You took a lower paying just to get away. You have stated in the past that the only reason you have continued to pick up time in the hospital was to keep your skills up to date. You are in a 2-income family without dependents. There are many nurses who do not have that luxury and are forced to work an additional job in order to provide for their dependents. They paid a heavy price to get where they are today both emotionally and financially. For someone in your position to tell others that they are not worth more is almost harboring on ......... I will let you choose the word that fits the best.

    I am through going down this path of nonsense with you. Thank god there are people who actually value themselves higher than you do. Your attitude is one of the main reasons nursing in general has not advanced and is in the shape it is in today. Sme people actually seek improvement than rather stay stagnant in a world they do not enjoy.
  12. by   Q.
    Wild,

    Because I chose to not have dependents and because both my husband and I worked through college and ate Hamburger Helper for 5 years, and because we don't sink our money into car payments, does that mean that I can't hold an opinion because someone else has it rougher than me - in the same profession? I bet that most of those nurses who are referring to are also making more than me.

    Yes I left the hospital full time and took a lower paying clinic job. That was also to set myself up to be able to return to school. And don't think that the lower pay didn't come with sacrificies.

    It's not like I'm some CEO in an insurance company with this opinion. I am a bedside nurse, just like everyone else, and I make $16/hour. Because my husband and I appear to have it "better" than other nurses does not invalidate my opinion.

    Jeez Wild, I'm kinda offended. I have the lifestyle I do because of the choices I made.
  13. by   Q.
    Also Wild, I seriously doubt that the nursing profession is in this state because little ol' me holds the opinion that 80K is a bit much for your basic bedside nurse with little experience.

    Perhaps travelers and agency are, because they often come in and fill the gaps that the regular staff leave as a result of horrible conditions, and hospitals don't mind paying agency because they don't have to provide benefits to them which account for...what is it....1/3 of someone's income?

    See how ludricous that is?

    Also, the nursing shortage is a pendulum. It was this way years ago as well....when I just a twinkle in the profession's proverbial eye.

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