OR nurse salary...

  1. I'll be graduating soon, and I was going through some job openings at a hospital in Florida. Someday, I would like to be part of the perioperative nursing team. I hope to actually be a nurse in the OR or the PACU. Anyways, while looking at some positions, I found that a circulating nurse hourly wage at this hospital was 16.37. But other nurse positions, such as the ones available on a Med-Surg floor, pay 25 and up. What?!?! What happened to the phrase "a nurse is a nurse is a nurse?" To everyone that are working professionals, do nurses in the OR (RNs) get paid less than all other nurses? Or is it the same?
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  2. 19 Comments

  3. by   sunnyjohn
    hmmmm... I always found that an OR nurse with a little experience usually made a bit more.

    Are you sure that 16.37 is for an OR NURSE position and not a Surgical Tech position?

    I got around $16 out of tech school.
  4. by   crackerjack
    Depending on the geographical area, that's the starting wage for a new grad, regardless of area worked. In my area it's about a dollar higher than that and there is no pay differenc from one floor to the next. However, in your area there may be such a desperate need for med-surg nurses that they're willing to offer a considerably higher wage to get people to take the position.
  5. by   micco
    As a new grad, I made $20 an hour. My friend who works at the same hospital diferent department started out the same and got a small raise after she completed orientation. Well, I finished my 6 month orientation last month and was told there will be no raises. I guess that is the trade off for the additional training that is required to work in the OR.
  6. by   Mommy TeleRN
    I think OR nursing would be great. So very different from floor nursing. But the lack of wage opportunities is a big drawback for me.
    At my hospital the starting day pay is the same for OR or any other area of nursing. But you have little opportunity for shift differentials.
    My eventual goal is to be in a weekender position. On nights the pay is pretty much DOUBLE the new grad base pay. I could potentially be making around $70-75k full time weekend nights within 2 years of graduation. In the OR you are working weekdays, so only around 40k potential income.
    Other than that seems like an awesome area of nursing to pursue. If everything else was equal I'd be in the OR in a heartbeat.
  7. by   suzanne4
    That $16 sounded like surgical tech position, not RN.

    Remember that nurses are usually paid the same, it is dependent upon the years of experience, not the area worked. Nurses in the OR or Cath Lab may be getting more per week, but that is because of the required hours on-call, not from more per hour. So a nurse with 5 years experience in the IS would be getting the same as an RN that had 5 years of ER or ICU or Med-Surg experience.......at least in most facilities.

    It does not matter if the nurse is working Med-Surg, OR, ER, Out-patient, etc. Each area requires its own skill set...........
  8. by   ewattsjt
    Remember that this is a board that is accessed by people from different states and in some cases different countries. The cost of living has to be factored in as well. So one can not go by pay rate alone.

    I worked construction traveling the US at one time. I was paid $12 in IN; $14 in Chicago, IL; $21 in NY,NY; $18 in Buffalo, NY; $28 in LA, CA; $12 in Dallas TX. All this was considered equal because of the cost of living.

    Check it out and factor cost of living before deciding.
  9. by   CrazyScrubNurse
    Yes I have to agree about the state pay scale thing because new OR grads in the area I live in(Houston) get about $23 to start out in the OR. Some hospitals consider the OR specialty area so they pay a little more. Man that $16 does sound more like tech pay. Even though there is not much of a shift diff in the OR because of the standard 6:30-3 hours, there is ALWAYS call. My hospital pays us $3.00 and hour just to carry the beeper and if we get called out we get time and a half plus the $3. Also if you have already worked your 40 hours for the week you get time and a half plus $12.00. There are always ways to make some extra money in the O.R.. Plus you can work agency if you are in a large area. I don't know what the RN rate is for Houston but I know it is at least $30 an hour because as an agency Scrub I made anywhere from $23-$26. The money is out there you just have to find a good area and check out all of the hospitals. We all know that the raises are crappy(2% for us) so the only way to make a lot is to start out at a lot.
  10. by   crackerjack
    New grads (already having passed boards) in my area start out at just under $18 and I believe our techs max out around $12-14. One of them told me once what it was and I just forget. So, I wouldn't rule out the $16 as the ne grad RN pay. Like another poster stated, it is very dependent on *where* you're job shopping. Also, if you go to the hospital's website and look at job offerings, you can find information on the hire rate for new grads as well as other positions for comparison. While you're there, shop benefits and compare hospitals.
  11. by   KristinWW
    Quote from Lionheart
    I'll be graduating soon, and I was going through some job openings at a hospital in Florida. Someday, I would like to be part of the perioperative nursing team. I hope to actually be a nurse in the OR or the PACU. Anyways, while looking at some positions, I found that a circulating nurse hourly wage at this hospital was 16.37. But other nurse positions, such as the ones available on a Med-Surg floor, pay 25 and up. What?!?! What happened to the phrase "a nurse is a nurse is a nurse?" To everyone that are working professionals, do nurses in the OR (RNs) get paid less than all other nurses? Or is it the same?
    The $16 would have to be for a tech position. Where in FL are you looking?
  12. by   Terpole
    Quote from KristinWW
    The $16 would have to be for a tech position. Where in FL are you looking?

    I believe this was for Shands Jacksonville (in Jacksonville, Florida), but at what salary did you guys start out?
  13. by   ewattsjt
    Here in central Indiana starting pay in the facility where I work is $17.6? hr but it is also considered one of the lowest paying hospitals around. Techs here make from $12.9? to $ 19.?? hr.
  14. by   CrazyScrubNurse
    Dang guys y'all need to bring it on over here to Houston. Some of our techs make in the $18.00+ range. Nurses....whooo knows how high they are. I know some of our L&D nurses are pulling in close to $30 an hour and NO that is not a PRN rate. I know our OR nurses get quite a bit.

    But is the cost of living in Florida less than it is here? Maybe that is the thing.

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