Nurses wages...

  1. Just to get a run across the board, what kind of annual wages do most RNs in your areas earn? Around here it gets to be about $30k per year. Is that average or not?
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  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   -jt
    [QUOTE]Originally posted by barrybender:
    [B]Just to get a run across the board, what kind of annual wages do most RNs in your areas earn?


    NYC - new grad ADNs working on the day shift earn a base of $50-$55,000/yr depending on facility and contract the RNs there negotiated.

    add several thousand more each for BSN, MS, eve/night shift, specialty certification, years of RN experience.
  4. by   OC_An Khe
    The real comparison to see if you are being compensated fairly is with other RN's in your geographical area. ( I know ,few RN's are paid fairly based on our responsibilities). I'm in a more rural part of Ct. and new grads receive $45K to start, plus all those premiums/differntials. The difference with the top of the scale is not great, and wage compression is a problem that needs to solved for nursing to really compete with other professions.
  5. by   nurshathaway
    Ocankhe brings up a very good point Even though a starting salary in New York City of $50,000 sounds astronomical when you are starting with only $30,000, you are not thinking about the cost of living. If you wanted to live in New York City, a 2-bedroom apartment (and not that big either) can run at least $2000 a month.

    If you want to compare, it is definitely better to look at the same geographical/cost of living area.
  6. by   reg06
    Yes, it is very important to look at the cost of living in comparison to a person's pay scale. In the Minneapolis, St. Paul area it is about 21.90 an hour on the third shift for a nurse of two years on weeknights. This translates to approx. $40,000 working FULL time. It sounds like a decent wage when your fresh out of college BUT....

    The big problem is, there is only a $ 3.00 difference from a 10 yr nurse to a 30 yr nurse in our area. This means a RN who has 30 + years of experience is unable to make even more than $50.000 a year. For all that skill and expertise, I think that is terrible.

    My raise since last year was a whole 34 cents an hour.

    Now this is just a small drop in the bucket as far as salary goes, when you consider the stress level, life and death situations, overworked atmosphere that nurses are under every day. Also, contrary to public belief, nurses do not get free healthcare! Actually, our healthcare coverage is not very good at all. We also have a very crummy pension package. We deserve better.

    My husband is very talented as a computer software developer, yet when I look at his job and the fact that he is not working with life and death, and gets paid well beyond what nurses make I really wonder. He also has top notch benefits, bonuses and so on.
  7. by   timonrn
    Reg06, I aggree with you 100%--we in Minnesota get terrible wages, and we are in the top of the wage scale compared to everywhere else!! I pay more for healthcare then anyone I know (for example, ask anyone who works for Scimed) and I have to use my own hospital for supposed "least expensive care." All I can say is, our contract negotiations up here are already ongoing and it is looking up for us in this state--
  8. by   -jt
    [QUOTE]Originally posted by timonrn:
    All I can say is, our contract negotiations up here are already ongoing and it is looking up for us in this state--

    Good for you! Any improvements you are able to negotiate will become the standard for your area & eventually filter down & impact other RNs there for the better.

    RNs represented by NYSNA in any part of our state do not pay for healthcare benefits at all. Thats not negotiable. The hospital is told from day one of negotiations dont even go there. But this negotiations round, our hospital tried to not only reduce our benefits to 70/30% but they wanted us to have to pay for it too. They stalled negotiations on that point. They would not understand that RNs would leave over this and they wouldnt be able to recruit new ones if we had to pay for our benefits when we could take any other RN job in the area & get them for free. They would not recognize that this would cause their staffing shortage to worsen as it was not being competitive. So, the Rns had a massive 4 hour public informational picket outside the hospital & the very next day it dropped its demand that we pay for our benefits. But they didnt come to their senses about improving them until we took a strike vote this month, ready to walk on their refusal to address staffing guidelines, mandatory ot, & the health benefits improvements we needed. We got an overwhelming repsonse - 93% of the RNs voted to strike over these issues. But we never had to serve the notice. 6 days after the vote, the hospital agreed to RN/PT ratios, staffing guidelines, severe limits on their ability to use mandatory ot, AND made the healthcare improvements (which we do not pay for at all.) All these things that 6 months of negotiating could not get them to agree to & in just one session after a strike vote of Yes, all of the sudden it was not only possible but acceptable for them to agree. The CEO even put out a newsletter about how happy he is with the "extremely fair, mutually beneficial contract" negotiated with the RNs.
    Whats right is right & Theres power in unity.
    Good luck to you.
  9. by   Jenny P
    I work here in the Twin Cities, and with 31 years experience, I'd make $56,000/ year IF I worked full time; but I only work 3/4 time. It sounds good, but I can't afford to have the health insurance through my work place; we have to use my husbands', even though I'd pefer to go through my health system, his coverage is so much cheaper than mine and I have a family that requires more medical care than most (Hubby has M.S., 2 ADHD kids- 1 with other medical problems, and my own health problems. I do not feel I am being compensated enough for the type of work I do, nor am I being treated with respect by my employer.
  10. by   OC_An Khe
    _jt that was an interesting and encouraging post. Can you give me any insight on your compensation range, new grad to top of pay scale without premiiums and diffs. We are working on trying to change severe wage compression in or area. Top to bottom only 25% difference. What other profession has such a narrow range over an entire lifetime of working?
  11. by   mustangsheba
    Barrybender: Consideration of the regional wage is all important. The annual income for a nurse in Oregon has increased very little in the past 15 years. Some hospitals still start nurses with experience out at ~$15/hr., although more start at ~$18/hr. I have seen jobs for RN's advertised at $12/hr. Then there is the other end of the spectrum. Some NP's make pretty good money. What is normal in Tacoma, Seattle, and Olympia? I don't know what rent is in Port Angeles, but if it's anything like Seattle, you should get a pretty good wage.
  12. by   Mijourney
    Hi colleagues. The excuse I always hear from various administrators on the compression of nurses' wages is that we make up the lion's share of the budget. Well, tell me, what is the excuse for wage compression when nurses do not make up the largest part of the staff in a particular facility or office?

    I agree that teachers for the most part, are not getting paid what they are worth, but most of them get paid equal or more than nurses and work nine months out of the year. I believe their national average salary is $42K. Maybe the slightly higher wage reflects the educational requirements for teaching, or maybe it's because of the unions. Someone correct me if I'm wrong. I'm curious to know if those who teach year round can command and get higher wages?

    I note where CNN had a feature on the nursing shortage and stated our national salary average is $40K. That's sad, because no matter the region, direct care nurses do intensive work and are exposed to so many hazards. As nurses, now is the time for us to take advantage of the need for reform in pay, respect, and working conditions, even if we live in one of the right to work states. Also, we need reform in unpopular areas such as educational standards and nurse practice acts. The media, although tricky, is beginning to give us more positive recognition. Unless, someone can pull a rabbit out of their hat, I don't see where the need for humans to perform nursing activities will go away for a long time to come.
  13. by   goldilocksrn
    I have two words: hazard pay. Many other professions pay it. You work on a high rise, work near toxic stuff, etc, you get extra pay. I mean what is more toxic than the smells of a fresh GI bleed or a pt. reeking of pseudomonas? Better yet, how about those chemo drugs we give? How about those IV starts on combative ETOH and OD pts with HIV and Hep B&C? I think that deserves a little hazard pay! Post mortem care deserves a special little bonus. Where I work in CA, I make 18.00 an hour( I have a BSN,PHN, Psych degree)and have been working over 3 years on a frantic DOU (6:1 by the way w/ insulin gtts, lido, nitro, art lines, you name it) and I am one of the nurses with the highest seniority-which tells you of the high turn over rate. The cost of living is high here, with rent running around $850/mo for a small 2 bedroom apartment. With my mortgage,etc, I barely pay my bills. Oh, by the way, I think any nurse who has to work weekends, Christmas,etc deserves triple time.

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