1. Working with some seasoned nurses in the ER over the last couple years, they make more than starting NP's do.
You can't compare a 20 year career veterans salary to a starting salary in most fields. Additionally, who wants to be a 55 year old wiping butts and taking crap in the ER working 12 hour shifts and then coming home and icing your knees while praying your back doesn't give out because the 300 lb guy in bed # 4 needed lift assist to stand at the bed to pee ? Finally, no one in my class started at nursing wages. No one. I started at LEAST $12.00 more an hour than my highest ever PRN/float pool rate and that did not include the raise I got a few months later, etc.
2. Two doctors and a nurse who did recruiting and hiring for a couple years all stated that it was not worth it...their reasons were:
A. Increased liability without enough pay
I work in a family practice office and all of our providers work together as a team. We take on the liability together.
B. Overworked and underpaid for their work. In our ER, the PA's do most of the work while the physicians kick back.
That's sad. I don't work in the ER so I have no idea if that happens or not
C. PA's are preferred in hospital settings (which is my major interest...though Im sure an office setting will be great later in life)
Yes, I have heard this is true in regards to hospital settings.
D. Again...financial. They did not agree that 2.5 years of schooling was worth a mediocre increase in salary (even long term). They collectively felt that working a 4th 12hr shift each week was better than spending another 2.5 years an lots of money for a NP degree.
My FNP degree cost < than $20K. I don't think that counts as "lots of money." I tend to wonder about the new MDs who have a $300-400K debt load !
3. If I dont jump on the bandwagon right away...the rumors of the dreaded 2015 DNP may come true. Gawd, aren't you talking the truth. Don't even get me started on that! RUN RUN RUN!
Look, I went to UTA and you can feel free to message me. I had NO desire to work in a hospital and still don't. I go to work at 8:30 and am done seeing patients before 5. I can sit and casually write charts. I get to pee. I have no drunks or druggies using me for narcotics and last week was the first time in OVER a year that I remotely touched a body fluid (8 year old gagged after a rapid strep test and puked on the table!). I have a LIFE. I am paid well. I have time with my family and at the end of the day I feel I caught an appendicitis, got some diabetes under control and *maybe* got through to the 48 year old with new hypertension. I will never again have to put up with the hospital "heel clackers" who are managing my time, looking over my shoulder and rewarding my "outstanding patient care" with a coupon for coffee from the hospital cafeteria.
1. Increased autonomy- DEFINITELY!
2. I can do a full time NP program and still work
Eh, up until a point. It will be more challenging that you think. When the heavier clinical hours come on you will have to do some juggling. Also, UTA is heavy on the Saturday classes in the later clinical classes so be aware.
3. There are 2 great NP programs near me (TWU and UTA). UTA is a great program. As with any of them, they are heavy on the fluff (theory, etc.) in the beginning. Just hang in there and play the game.
4. I believe I can get in without to much hassle.
Entry has become much more competitive but yes, you probably can if your undergrad grades were decent
5. In state tuition is affordable. YES!
6. Self satisfaction
Finally, don't let the staff naysayers get you down. Some people will do and say anything to keep you from moving on and expanding your career. They feel threatened when one of their own seems discontent because it brings out all sorts of insecurity in them. If your hospital only pays NPs a bit more than RNs then that sucks and in the DFW area it does not hold true for all hospitals. It definitely is not true in private practice. I was never remotely near $100K working as an RN unless I busted butt working extra and overtime.