It seems like everyone but nurses make more money - page 4

I didn't become a nurse because I had a calling or anything. I was one of those few idiots in high school who had no dreams or aspiration, so my dad said "hey nursing sounds good" and I said... Read More

  1. by   jaycam
    Maybe it's because I grew up poor. Different perspective when you have legitimately ate SOS and enjoyed it because sausage grease, flour, milk, and white bread was all that you had in the house.

    My wages, as a 1.0 new grad nurse are above the county median. Easily. Without having to do any OT, without shift differentials. How many brand new grads in other fields can say that. Especially ones with associate level degrees? I'm not "rich" but I'm certainly not poor. I'm comfortable, I can save for retirement. I can afford a working car and to live in a safe neighborhood. I don't need more that. I'm happy with that.

    Should nurses be paid more? Sure, but it's weird to say we don't get paid well. The pay just doesn't reflect how hard the work can be.
  2. by   Rose_Queen
    Quote from DeeAngel
    The kinds of jobs you describe will go away literally overnight if there is a significant economic downturn, there is no job security really. Nurses, however are working during economic downturns because they are legally required to be there. You need to decide if you want money or security because the two no longer go hand in hand unless you own your own company.
    Nursing doesn't guarantee job security. Sure, nurses are required, but that doesn't mean facilities won't decide not to post vacant positions to be filled, increase patient ratios, force nurses to take on more and more non-nursing duties, or what have you. Nursing may not disappear when the economy suffers, but it still suffers. The other hospital in town recently furloughed about 10% of its staff. They certainly didn't have job security.
  3. by   Buyer beware
    Here's the quandry. Nurses do make higer wages than the fast food workers but after being loaned up and screwed over by the for-profits, guess what?
    You are correct!!! Back to fast food wages.
    Isn't that funny don't you think?
  4. by   Aromatic
    you pretty much have to either to A. complete an education that not many can complete or B. be able to do a job that not many can do. Nursing, while difficult physically and emotionally and a great and important profession does not meet either of those catagories.

    If ya want big bucks go into the corporate banking industry or start some sort of useful business. useful business as in, not a pyramid scheme type adventure like selling advocare.
  5. by   Glycerine82
    Just remember a lot of people who make over 100k a year don't like their jobs. I could probably have chosen a different path and make more money, but I love nursing.
  6. by   comm
    For the amount of schooling and experience that is required to be a nurse the money is great. I understand that there's a huge variation of skill with nurses but just to graduate nursing school and get into a job is really nothing special and it can be done with minimal student debt. Nursing school was not difficult, TNCC, ACLS etc. are are very short courses, accomplished with minimal studying. The work itself, not that difficult. yet we make 20+ an hour, my state being in the top 5 lowest. That's enough for me to practically work part time and own multiple buildings.

    I've worked construction, delivery, management, and they were all much more difficult than nursing. Ok I'll admit one of the CAH assignments where I was rolling solo with just a single provider and getting 20+ ERs a shift plus my MS patients, ya that was tough but it was temporary. The hardest I ever worked as a nurse was as a Director and even that was cushy compared to construction.

    Compare that to MD's that end up with 11-13 years worth of college level education and half a million in student debt... go figure they make more. Or someone like my old flatmate. He basically sacrificed his entire teens and 20s learning 5 different programming languages.

    As another poster stated it comes down to skill and demand. In general, having the ability to understand and write a programming language requires more skill than being a nurse. Engineering an electrical layout for a sky scraper takes more skill than that starting an IV and double checking yourself in a drug book. As much hate as I'm sure I'll get for saying this here, its not that hard to be a nurse when you look at the educational and intelligence demands of other jobs. Nursing, as much as we pretend its not, is still just a blue collar job. We provide skills (assessments, IV's, vents) and a little bit of insight. Basically a step down from middle management in the healthcare field. We have an average job with average demands, it makes sense we would make an average wage (national average being mid 20's and nurses being 33)

    If you have more specializations or in an area that requires more skill then you tend to get paid a little more.

    Given these numbers: National average salary $25; Nursing average $33 The answer to this question is a question. Do you honestly think that you work harder or are more skilled than significantly more than half the population? Could you look those people in the face and honestly say, I'm worth more than you?
  7. by   BlueDawnRN
    Quote from DeeAngel
    The kinds of jobs you describe will go away literally overnight if there is a significant economic downturn, there is no job security really. Nurses, however are working during economic downturns because they are legally required to be there. You need to decide if you want money or security because the two no longer go hand in hand unless you own your own company.
    My thoughts exactly. A lot of these people will be laid off when things get bad (and they will), but we have skills that will always be needed.

    Also, a lot of these high income owners have a ton of debt. If you live a modest lifestyle with a modest income and have less debt than someone who makes more but is paying a big mortgage and has multiple car payments, you're actually richer.

    Lastly, these jobs are often around the clock jobs, even if they get holidays off. I don't want to worry about setting up meetings with clients when I'd rather be having dinner with my family. I love knowing that when I clock out, I'm done.
  8. by   RegularNurse
    Ok everyone, it is time to liberate ourselves from the emotional attachment to this situation and look at the facts as they actually exist.

    Health care business make money by billing for services. Very few registered nurse roles actively make money for health care businesses. Doctors, physical therapists, car salesmen, pharmaceutical sales reps, etc. can all point to a number on a spreadsheet and say this is how much money I made this business this year.

    In the business world, this is called a bargaining chip. If you cannot objectively quantify your contribution to the bottom line, you cannot objectively ask for money. Nursing sensitive indicators are pennies on the dollar compared to billing for services. Nurses, at best, passively generate money by not leaving billable dollars on the table by preventing falls etc.

    To simplify further, in hospitals, where I assume most of us are employed, you make good money by either generating revenue (doctors), or controlling capital (administrators). The cost of nursing care is a cost of doing business to a hospital. For example, in a rural area, nurses typically make the market value for the labor, which would be lower than a major city. The opposite is typically true for providers, because they need to be recruited and incentivized financially to join the business. Again, businesses are dependent on sales, and doctors are the equivalent to sales reps. You can’t offer a service, if you physically cannot deliver the service itself.
    Combine this all with the basic economics of supply and demand. Becoming a nurse is pretty low hanging fruit career wise. It only requires a bachelor’s degree in some markets and offers a nice middle class paycheck.

    Translation: nursing is attainable for most and can elevate a family’s socioeconomic status.

    These characteristics mean that many people are attracted to the field. Most nurses are also female and view their nursing career as just a job. This, “just a job,” mentality manifests itself as a three day work week, and a compromise of lower wages for favorable work schedules.

    Key Points:
    1. Nurses do not actively make money for health care businesses, so why should we be payed a ton of money.
    2. Nurses are female and want favorable schedules. This compromise results in lower wages from employers. I can't emphasize enough how important this is. How many nurses would agree to extend their availability and accountability to their employer for a 120k salary. In my experience, not many. Nurses WANT to be paid hourly and they WANT a minimal commitment to their employer.
    3. There are a lot of nurses, so there is little need to offer RNs serious money.
    Last edit by RegularNurse on Dec 31, '16 : Reason: Just Edits
  9. by   RegularNurse
    Right, but most people in other fields actively pursue higher education. If all you need for a better job is another degree, then nursing might be one of the easiest fields to advance in.
  10. by   RegularNurse
    Quote from kardz30
    Honestly any profession that requires a license and is regulated probably has a lot of potential to make money.

    Doctors and surgeons don't do it by being hospitalists. They do it by contracting and private practice.
    Lawyers don't do it by being prosecutors, they do it by being in private practice.
    Nurses do it by travel nursing, staffing businesses, or advanced practice (nurse prac / CRNA) and contracting/private practice.

    You have to be willing to do what it takes within a profession to make money. Usually that requires risk or self sufficiency. Working for someone else is equivalent to making someone elses dreams come true monetarily. Don't forget healthcare is a business whether its private or public. They have to break even or in the green. Handing RN's $100 an hour is not congruent with being profitable. Being in business for yourself is always a better option if money is your dream.
    Agreed. There is a ton of money to be made in healthcare. You just have to be willing to pursue it.
  11. by   morelostthanfound
    I've often thought of this and yes, there definitely is a huge disparity in professional salaries. As an example, an electrical engineer (also a 4 year degree) generally enjoys a higher salary than a nurse, better working conditions (usually), less weekends/nights/holidays! However, on the flip side, teachers, in my opinion, have one of society's most important jobs-molding and educating our young people-yet are grossly under compensated and appreciated. Doesn't make sense to me either!
  12. by   ArtClassRN
    If money and lifestyle are you are main concerns then go get a job those ballers you mentioned have.
  13. by   Mini2544
    Haha I'm sorry. I just have to laugh at your honesty. "I got sick of the humanity in the ER" at least you admitted it and left!
    Maybe try a pharm job??