How are Canadian nurses paid compared to American nurses?

  1. Hello

    Sifting through all these messages here, I find that almost EVERYONE complains about low pay. Well, I'm wondering. I'm entering nursing school, and many many people have said the pay is GOOD! I live in Saskatchewan, Canada, and I'm not positive what base pay is, but I know we're pretty close to Alberta, which has a ceiling of 36 bucks an hour. I think base is around 26??

    I've been told that I'll be making $30 an hour by the time im finished school in 4 years. Are the people I'm talking to mislead? If so, how is this bad pay? Are people in Alberta and Sask being paid MORE than people in the US? Because I'm sure I wouldn't mind getting paid $26 an hour... I know for a FACT that in 2001, base pay for RN's was $24 an hour.l

    many people here say they make around $17, and they're RN's! That just seems so low! What are people making in Canada compared to the US? The rates here in Saskatchewan seem MUCH higher than the ones in parts of the US...
    Last edit by DMR1 on Jun 28, '03
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  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   oramar
    It is very hard to say what nurses make in the US. If you live on coast the pay tends to be better than if you live in middle America or in the South.
  4. by   vettech
    Originally posted by DMR1
    Hello

    Sifting through all these messages here, I find that almost EVERYONE complains about low pay. Well, I'm wondering. I'm entering nursing school, and many many people have said the pay is GOOD! I live in Saskatchewan, Canada, and I'm not positive what base pay is, but I know we're pretty close to Alberta, which has a ceiling of 36 bucks an hour. I think base is around 26??

    I've been told that I'll be making $30 an hour by the time im finished school in 4 years. Are the people I'm talking to mislead? If so, how is this bad pay? Are people in Alberta and Sask being paid MORE than people in the US? Because I'm sure I wouldn't mind getting paid $26 an hour... I know for a FACT that in 2001, base pay for RN's was $24 an hour.l

    many people here say they make around $17, and they're RN's! That just seems so low! What are people making in Canada compared to the US? The rates here in Saskatchewan seem MUCH higher than the ones in parts of the US...
    This may seem a silly question but, are you comparing apples to apples? I just checked and $1 US = $1.34 Canadian. ($1 Canadian = $0.74 US) So, your $30 Candian is equivalent to about $22.25 US. Starting pay in my area (Houston, TX) is pretty close to that.
  5. by   DMR1
    ok, well that is still quite a bit higher than $17 an hour.

    In your area, is $22 considered well paying?
  6. by   disher
    Most Canadian nurses are unionized, salaries vary from province to province, the Canadian federation of nurses unions (CFNU) website lists the salaries. I don't see Saskatchewan nurses making $30 hour at (CFNU) website but I think the salaries listed are from the first contract year.

    http://www.nursesunions.ca/cb/index.shtml

    If, in four years you will make $30 /hr in Saskatchewan that is a decent income. I hope Saskatchewan nurses are being offered good salaries. Maybe future nurses who train in Saskatchewan won't leave after they graduate to earn more pay in the US or other provinces.
  7. by   vettech
    Originally posted by DMR1
    ok, well that is still quite a bit higher than $17 an hour.

    In your area, is $22 considered well paying?
    To be honest, as I'm giving serious consideration to leaving this area after grad (tired of living in a metropolis) I've not seriously looked into salaries here. However, I know the Harris County Hospital District starts at $21/hr and I know a newgrad (a client at my clinic) who started at $21.50/hr in a major hospital in the Med Center.

    To be honest, combining that with our low cost of living, it makes it hard to leave.
    Last edit by vettech on Jun 29, '03
  8. by   Cynthiann
    I'm not a nurse yet, but someone told me a nurse recruiter quoted her $16.40 for a hospital in my area. That's new grad pay. Like someone said, the midwest and south the pay isn't high. On the other hand the cost of living is much cheaper than the north or coastal areas.

    Also, it's not easy to compare pay in another country because of cost of living and lifestyle, you can't just go by the exchange. For example, I have family in the Philippines and that $16/hr here is so little. Take that same money and convert the currency in the Philippines and you will be living really, really well there. That's because a lot of things are much cheaper over there. I'm not sure what the difference is in Canada, but it's something worth mentioning.
  9. by   fergus51
    Also you should remember that provincially the wages are the same no matter what the cost of living is like. Nurses in Vancouver or Toronto are getting paid the same as nurses in Peterborough and Kellowna.
  10. by   laurasc
    Originally posted by fergus51
    Also you should remember that provincially the wages are the same no matter what the cost of living is like. Nurses in Vancouver or Toronto are getting paid the same as nurses in Peterborough and Kellowna.
    No, sorry, that's not quite correct. Salaries vary from province to province just like healthcare varies from province to province.

    The site that disher posted above shows what the salaries are.

    Laura
  11. by   fergus51
    I meant provincially wages are the same, meaning all nurses in one province are paid the same. I live in Toronto, where it would cost 400K to buy a house, but someone in Pettawawa makes the same as me because all Ontario ONA nurses make the same amount.
  12. by   laurasc
    Originally posted by fergus51
    I meant provincially wages are the same, meaning all nurses in one province are paid the same.
    Ah! I stand corrected! Sorry. :imbar



    Laura
  13. by   Qwiigley
    Los Angeles new grads make 20ish/hr. Within a year you jump to $35.00 at a moderately paying hospital. The better paying hospitals of course are much more. ($35.00 is non-union).
    Nurse Anesthetists starting pay in LA is $125,000.

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