Low NP Salary for VA

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by NP_12345 NP_12345, MSN, APRN (New) New

Has 11 years experience.


I received my official offer from the VA for a NP position. I am a RN of 11 years and NP 4 years of that. I wrote my heart out and provided every single piece of supporting documents for what I wrote. I made sure to specify in my examples of how my actions impacted the unit/facility. Well, I was boarded NP2 level 3. I was fully expecting low NP3 and would accept high NP2 at a minimum. Y'all the offer is low and about a 30k pay cut from my current position. I responded to HR asking which areas of my paper did not meet NP3 standards and the opportunity to resubmit. I also included my medical director in the email. I was told by HR the offer is firm since it was rated by my peers based on experience, references, certifications, etc. Anyone have any other suggestions or been in this position before? 

umbdude, MSN, NP

Specializes in Psych/Mental Health. Has 5 years experience. 1,217 Posts

Don't have much knowledge about this but I would just consider the benefits since the VA supposedly have superior benefits (vacation, low healthcare premium etc.) compared to other organizations.


sleepwalker, MSN, NP

Specializes in Occupational Health. Has 18 years experience. 331 Posts

Wish I could help. Gotta commend you on completing the process though...it's daunting to say the least. Just one of the reasons I never made the effort to apply.


Pralante, ADN, BSN, MSN, APRN

Specializes in Plastics, Bariatric, Orthognatic, Rheumatology. Has 11 years experience. 8 Posts

What state are you in and what kind of position did you apply for ?

Please say the benefits are great but I hear you win you say its hard to accept a payout like that !

I am debating if I should apply or not because also looks like its hard to determine the grade level you will be placed at 



NP_12345, MSN, APRN

Has 11 years experience. 8 Posts

I applied in Texas. I am a NP for ambulatory care unti. The benefits are great. Five weeks paid vacation, eight days sickleave, 401(k) match up to 5%, and so much more. I was unable to successfully negotiate a pay increase, so I excepted the offer and will hope for a promotion in a year. It comes out to be by at 24k paycut 🥴. But I need health insurance and benefits for my family so here we are. 


OUxPhys, BSN, RN

Specializes in Cardiology. Has 7 years experience. 1,198 Posts

VA is notorious for lowballing. I know with RNs they can appeal, not sure about NPs. I do know though that initially they start out low but in the long run make really good money. 


NP_12345, MSN, APRN

Has 11 years experience. 8 Posts

I’ve heard that too. They do not allow any type of appeals upon hiring. I went through every channel all the up to chief nurse but was told too bad. Once you are employed and working you allowed 1 appeal per year. 



Specializes in Former NP now Internal medicine PGY-3. 411 Posts

In raw dollars the VA pays most people less.  For physicians it can be >100k less. But the benefits are often better and workload often less