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- by mbrn1985 Jun 27Hello everyone! I was looking for some advice based on your experiences with higher paid nursing jobs. I am currently working as a staff RN in an intensive care unit at a major trauma center in the southeast. I have been a nurse for 4 years. At the current time, I am making $23.00/hr (12 hours shifts/3 days a week). I am interested to hear about other options in nursing that will allow me to have higher pay (excluding travel nursing and/or going back to school for MSN). What jobs pay better than others? For example, home triage nurse or dialysis nurse? Any input would be appreciated.
- Jun 28 by xoemmylouoxYour pay seems a bit low, but if course it depends on the cost of living where you are. I would say management would probably be your best bet on making more. Not all management positions require a MSN. I'm still surprised that being in the ICU and in it for 4 years that's all you make..
- Jun 28 by cayenne06Yeah, I thought ICU nurses were pretty well paid. I know that the southeast can have lower wages (obviously speaking generally) than a more populous place such as new england, but that seems really low. How long have you been at this job? What did you make as a brand new nurse 4 years ago?
- Jun 28 by PMFB-RNFor pay purposes a nurse is a nurse is a nurse. If you want to make more money you need to relocate to a higher paying area. In my hospital here in the upper Midwest you would likely be making around $80K and in another 5 years or so making well over $100K/year. The southeast is well known as being the lowest paying area of the country for nurses.
- Jun 28 by mbrn1985I have been in my current position for about 2 1/2 years. When I first started out, I was making $21.00/hr in the Emergency Department. Then when I went to the ICU I started with about $22.50. Based on my experience or at least at our facility nurses in all areas make the same no matter what area they work (although I am not sure about NICU RN's). Also, we are never guaranteed a raise. Our cost of living is a lot lower than other areas of the country, but I still believe that we are being underpaid for the work that we do.
- Jun 28 by HouTxFrustrating, isn't it?
Salary compression is a grim reality in nursing, no matter what part of the country you are in. Direct care nurses max out very early in their careers so the only way to increase income is by working more hours. The only consistent way around this is to move into a job that has higher levels of pay... which is directly tied to levels of responsibility &/or "value" to the employer. Although you may not have to get a graduate education, you will undoubtedly have to obtain additional training/certification to be eligible for more pay. Case management, Infection Control & Informatics are areas in which this is possible for certified nurses. You may also be able to move into first-line management without a graduate degree, depending on your employer.
- Jun 28 by Nurse ABCIn our area it doesn't matter what unit you work on, you make the same. Those that make the most (with no extra education) work straight weekends for higher pay and/or nights. Some pick up per diem jobs for extra pay. Some become a charge nurse to get into the management track where there they make a little more. Some just work lots of over-time. Others move or go back to school.
- Jun 29 by DesireeRN2011My specialty (I'm in the OR), seems to be well-compensated. I haven't been in the OR for very long, and came to our OR with a year of previous experience medsurg/stepdown (my pay in the OR is higher than what you've quoted in your original post). I work 4 10 hour days a week at a level I trauma center. But the OR is not for everyone...
- Jun 29 by meanmaryjeanShift differential (I work nights), weekend differential and clinical ladder bonus bumps my hourly rate by nearly $13.00/ hour.