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FNP to FL?


I'm looking for a little advice, experience, thoughts, networking, what not....

I am a seasoned family nurse practitioner and have practiced in two states, both were completely autnomous states for ARNP's. So, no collaboration agreement, or overseeing MD required. If I was inclined to do so I could open my own practice, which isn't totally out of my thoughts (just a scary thought most days).

Anyway, I have recently thought about moving to Florida. I always said I would NEVER practice in a state where NP's were not atonomous, never say never I guess. Now, i'm considering moving to one of the more restricted states as I understand it. Also one of the most poorly paid states. Again, I'm hearing this from some pretty biased people. I currently practice in Seattle where yes, I make well into 6 figures, the cost of living here is so high 6 figures barely pays rent in a crappy appartment. It's like living in NYC and only getting worse.

My brother lives in St Peterburg and my mother also recently moved there. I visited last summer and LOVED, LOVED, LOVED Florida, and this was in the summer! Returning to seatlle has been tough. I still have dreams of sunshine and florida and the gulf. Maybe I could put my damn ego on the backburner and move to florida. But people have cautioned me.

What I have been told is that the pay is awful, jobs are hard to come by, and the pay is awful, even considering how much lower cost of living is.

My specialty has been family practice, urgent care, and asethetics primarily.

I'd love to hear/read any thoughts Florida ARNP's can share with me. I have two kids, they also loved Florida, however to move again, I hate to do unless I'm really, really certain. I have just applied for my Florida state license and once that comes through I thought I'd test the waters and see about applying for jobs. But I'd like to know what it's really like to work in state where you are not autonomous. Are jobs really that hard to find? What about schools, kids, family life? Work/Family life ratio. Right now it's terrible, I'm still having to work three jobs to keep us aloat.

Thanks so much!!


Edited by SEDK


Specializes in Internal Medicine. Has 10 years experience.

I am not from Florida but have a sister that also lives on the gulf not too far from St Petersburg. Last time I was there I did some cursory searches on Indeed and Monster, and there were several listings at the time offering 6 figures salaries to FNP's with experience. Especially in urgent care/ER.

A lot of the horror stories about Florida seem to come from new grad NP's trying to ply their trade in the Miami, Ft Lauterdale, Orlando metros that also have lots of graduates. I remember thinking driving through the gulf and onto the panhandle how few providers were actually in the area compared to their more popular metros.

My step father actually started have some issues in the middle of the night once while we were staying in Rosemary Beach sort of near Destin, and we had to take him to the ER as there were no 24 hour urgent cares nearby, and the closest ER with 24 hour service was over 30 minutes away. When we got there one of the physicians talked to me for 20 minutes about how hard it is to get NP's for their ER. So there are jobs available.

An advantage you have compared to what you read here, is you are experienced, you know the volume you can handle, and you know the revenue it generates. Physician's can't lowball you when you aren't a dumb new grad that has no clue what any of that stuff means. I think if you go to an interview with that information as a means of justifying your desired salary, they will be hard pressed to say no, especially if they have heavy volume. Plus you require no major on the job clinical training.

Thank you. That information is helpful and makes a lot of sense. What I was hearing was from exactly what you said a new grad, who was living in the Miami area. He may have issues due to that. Like I said, I've submitted my application, I have noticed unlike other states, without a Florida license already in hand nobody is quick to call me back, except for pain centers since ARNP's were just given DEA numbers this year. Not my cup of tea however.


Specializes in Internal Medicine. Has 10 years experience.

Good luck. I think your experience will help you a lot, especially when they know you've operated in a state that has independent practice.

If you work for a private practice, most of the time they are about the money, and if you can bring them efficiency and fast turnaround, it doesn't matter where you live.

came from TX. not Florida. I know this opinion my differ from everyone else but I kinda like that I can only prescribe schedule 3-5 in outpatient/family practice. So that pain seekers don't see me, I just refer to pain management or if they want to see the supervising physician who can prescribed schedule 2's they are more than welcome to do so.

Orca, ASN, RN

Specializes in Corrections, psychiatry, rehab, LTC. Has 25 years experience.

My sister recently finished her ARNP in Florida (long time RN with an MSN), and she can't find a job with her new credentials because the market is glutted. As you mentioned, the pay isn't the greatest either. I'm originally from Florida, and I decided against moving back home (I'm in a western state as well) due to the compensation. The difference in the cost of living did not fully account for the difference in salary, and I would definitely have had a lower standard of living.

Are you in Washington? Just a guess by your name and the picture of the Orca. I work in Seatte, live in Bothell. And I have NEVER encoutered cost of living as high as it is here!


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