NP Salary vs. RN salary - page 6

by Health-Nut 41,942 Views | 87 Comments

I have a friend who ust starterd working as a NP about a year ago and she said she is really disappointed she didn't go to CRNA school because she is make the same money she made as a RN in the hospital and whe she did agency... Read More


  1. 4
    I am becoming an NP because:
    1. I don't like being kicked around.
    2. I would like to look at one patient at a time.
    3. I don't like to bust my knees/hips.
    4. I would like to travel with missions and help people (would have like to go to haiti).
    5. I would like to work a predictable schedule, and not be asked to work night shift with every job I change.
    and it goes on and on. Even if I end up making the same amount of money, it would be worthwhile. It will probably take me 5 years, 1 course at a time, without incurring a debt.

    Five years later, I will be 5 years older and more grateful for not having to abuse my knees/hips.
    qaidowu, Katie5, MacD, and 1 other like this.
  2. 0
    Not all NPs or APNs for that matter work a strictly M-F schedule. I still take call every 5th weekend, I do take call for others in my practice, I work weekends when the need arises too.

    That said, I still did the right thing going back to school because it gives me the flexibility that I want.
  3. 0
    TraumaRn,
    How is your job going? Is it what you expected?
  4. 1
    I have to agree with most of the postings. I just finished my NP prgram and took a position making about the same hourly rate as I make as a RN, which was a per-diem so my RN salary in non-benefited. I work 3 days a week 8-5. No weekends, holidays, or on call and it's 100% worth it. As an RN, I worked in a busy ER and was completely burnt out. GOing back to school was the best decision I ever made.
    qaidowu likes this.
  5. 0
    Its okay. I've been at it almost 4 years now. At this point, although I would love to work in the ER, the ERs in my area aren't amenable to midlevels.
  6. 0
    I'm at a cross roads again myself. For the last year and half I've been working as a weekend house supervisor and I've actually come to really enjoy the job. I'm experienced and love working with the nurses so as a result they really like working with me - they tell me i'm the only sup that helps them. I feel like its my job to mentor and support the staff and that means being present on the floor, answering the phone, answering the call lights and generally helping them do their job.

    So here I am in NP school and I'm wondering if I am making a mistake. Perhaps I should be getting my MSN in administration. I know I am a great nurse and a very good supervisor this is because I have so much experience and I like working directly with the staff. I'm not so sure I will be either as an NP, because I will be starting from scratch.
  7. 2
    I guess it depends on how you view your life and your expectations. I have a very different mindset when it comes to financial well-being than most of the nurses. I have goals that I am working on which include being financially independent( millionaire at 40), retire early at 50 with several millions.

    I wanted to maximize my earnings without spending a lot. So I went back to school to further my education( I have 2 NP certifications) on my employers' dime. I'd never in a million years pay for my grad schools on my own. I went to very expensive private schools(NYU,Columbia). I never understood the mentality of many nurses who spent a boat load of their own money going to school to become an NP. Let your employer pick up the tap.

    And I don't buy the craps most people sell you about being an NP. I was an NP for a couple years actually making LESS than I was making as an RN. I was offered in high 80s when I was making low 90s WITHOUT OT as an RN with several specialty certifications. The hospital I worked as inpatient NP is a nationally well-known hospital here in NYC so the pay was very similar amoung other hospitals.

    I can't speak for other work places but the NPs here worked their butts off to make a living. Yep, you still get dumped on by attendings who refused to do anything! There are many MDs who expect us to do their job and NP job. Yes there were many days we didn't get to eat lunch at lunch hrs or lunch was interruped bec our beepers kept beeping nonstop. It was never 9-5. Many of us stayed past our hrs to finish notes,order labs for tomorrow. Many of us came in extra early to prepare for the pts who were going to cath/OR,etc. and all the responsibilities of being an NP.

    Yes I loved holidays off, no weekends and going home at decent hr but by the time I got home it was 7+pm. 2 days off was not enough for me. I was exhausted all the time. Working 5 days meant, I spent more money... on food, clothes, gas, tolls, wear and tear on my car,etc. and most of all my love for travelling was put on hold bec I couldn't just get away for a few days. I really really missed going away for 5-6 days without taking a vacation time off. I kept thinking, maybe things will get better....but didn't.

    The last straw was when I confided a senior NP about my salary(94k) and career advancement/raises/bonues. She told me she's been there for 14+yr as an NP, her salary was 113K plus 1.5K bonus after 10 yrs . I was floored. I couldn't believe it. I could make that salary as an RN and I didn't have to work that hard.


    so I finally went back to work as an RN like some other NPs on my floor. now as an RN, I don't have the same responsibilties, very flexible work schedule, less headaches and MORE money. I made 122K last year. I did some OTs maybe 1-2 a month. My love for travelling is increased since I am able to travel more working 3-4 days/wk. I take care of 4-5 pts on a regular floor, 1-2 in critical care. Since I am a senior nurse, I precept 1-2 new student a year( $750 extra per preceptorship), act as a charge nurse( $2hr/hr extra), do some OTs ($72/hr). I get almost all the holidays off including thanksgiving,xmas but I choose to work on xmas bec I am not christian. I know plenty of senior RNs 15+ yrs + who make 100k WITHOUT doing any OTs.


    for me, life is better for me as an RN. I can save and earn a whole lot more. I don'tcare when people say why are you working as an RN when you are an Np? bec it's financially better for me.
    NurseMoi and missvictoriat like this.
  8. 0
    please don't take this the wrong way but it took me three months to convince my don to pay for my acls which they required of me. i'm not sure how you had your hospital pay for you np at a private university.....i almost don't believe it. you probably owe them 20 years for paying for school or have to pay them back if you leave.
    i think we all have ambitions to be millionaires and retire early, however wanting and doing are very different. it sounds like you have a rich husband that took care of everything while you went to school.
  9. 5
    Quote from spencer2002
    please don't take this the wrong way but it took me three months to convince my don to pay for my acls which they required of me. i'm not sure how you had your hospital pay for you np at a private university.....i almost don't believe it. you probably owe them 20 years for paying for school or have to pay them back if you leave.
    i think we all have ambitions to be millionaires and retire early, however wanting and doing are very different. it sounds like you have a rich husband that took care of everything while you went to school.

    i'm sorry that you are having a hard time believing it. what's not to believe? i don't know where you work but here in nyc, many if not all hospitals offer some kind of tuition assistance/continuing edu reimbursement. i work for a well-known and very wealthy private hospital that has great benefits for its employees. part of the benefits is a free tuition benefit to nyu or any other colleges/universities up to 10k/yr. you just have to be employed for at least 6mos to have that benefit kicks in. you also have to pay tax on part of the tution that the hospital paid for you ( the first $5200 is free). you don't owe the hospital anything after you are done. you can leave. that's how i went to nyu and columbia free.

    the hospital also pays up to $750/yr for your continuing edu. which include bcls, acls, any conferences that you like to attend which required fees. for example, i'm going to a pcna conference in chicago this yr. the conference fee/air/hotel will be reimbursed. if i have to renew my acls it will be free bec it falls under cont. edu benefit. the hsopital also pays for specialty certifications like ccrn, ocn etc. up to $3200/yr for 2 certs.

    you need to work at a place where they value education.

    of course, saying and doing are very different things. exactly like you said, many people wanted/dreamed to be financially independent,but they are not doing things that will help them get there. you are very typical like most women to assume that i have a rich husband that paid for everything. why can't a nurse be financilaly independent or a millionaire? why do you assume that i couldn't pay for my own and that i needed a rich husband to acheive where i am ?

    i know many many people including nurses,doctors who make 6 -figure salary living pay check to pay check. i am very different from them. i live by my words. i chose to be financially independent. i have been maxing out my retirement accts (403b, ira) every yr since i was 23. i also invest regulary in stock market with extra money. i stayed away from deappreciating assets most people have( expensive cars, hangbags, jewellries, shoes, hdtvs, etc). thus, i didn't get into any consumer debts like many people do and was able to pay off my mortgage, sls, car loan with my nursing salary. i did it on my own before i got married so it can be done. no i didn't have rich parents or husband. i'm an immigrant who came to this country with pennies and didn't even speak english. in order to achieve my goals, i had to be self-sufficient/reliant and most importantly, lived way below my means. i went to schools pt bec i didn't want to lose benefits and income. i sacrificed a lot of material things that most people have to acheive where i am, completeley debt free. sorry to disappoint you.

    life is about choices that you make. anyone can be a millionaire or financially indepedent when you are living in a country like usa. most people don't bec of poor choices they made. they live beyond their means or don't take risks. nothing ventured,nothing gained.
    Last edit by tulips134 on Feb 20, '10
  10. 1
    Quote from tulips134
    so I finally went back to work as an RN like some other NPs on my floor. now as an RN, I don't have the same responsibilties, very flexible work schedule, less headaches and MORE money. I made 122K last year. I did some OTs maybe 1-2 a month. My love for travelling is increased since I am able to travel more working 3-4 days/wk. I take care of 4-5 pts on a regular floor, 1-2 in critical care. Since I am a senior nurse, I precept 1-2 new student a year( $750 extra per preceptorship), act as a charge nurse( $2hr/hr extra), do some OTs ($72/hr). I get almost all the holidays off including thanksgiving,xmas but I choose to work on xmas bec I am not christian. I know plenty of senior RNs 15+ yrs + who make 100k WITHOUT doing any OTs.
    $100K per year is $53/hr based on 52 wks/yr and 36 hrs/wk. If you really make that much it's only because you live in NYC where cost of living is sky high. The top wage for senior RNs in the midwest is in the mid to upper $30s except for maybe Chicago.
    Daryl_G likes this.


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