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Newly grad LVN in CA getting paid less than MA??!!


Hello I recently graduated from LVN program in bay area California . I got offered a job in a home health care as office clerk while I received my license in the mail paying me $12/hr. Once I get my license in the mail I will get $15/ hr . I just think its an extremely low pay . I was making $20 dlls as a medical assistant ! And I feel like all the money and sacrifice I made is not with it since I make very little money not enough to pay my school loans. Then there are no benefits whatsoever . I don't want to be ungrateful and I don't know how to tell my boss that I find $15/ hr too little . Please any advise ?

Once I get my license I will be out in the field and office too

Once you get your license and start working in the field, you should start getting $18 an hour, like other LVNs. Or find another employer. Talk to the employer. When they find out (ha, ha, surprise) that $15 is not enough to satisfy you, they will not be surprised when you find an employer that values you and you find it necessary to move on.

Have you considered going back to work as an MA for $20 an hour? Employers don't like to pay LVNs $20 an hour, even in the Bay area.

Yes I have tried to look for MA jobs and I haven't had any luck . also been looking for LVN jobs without luck either . Everyone asks for experience. I do want to tell my boss about this but I don't know how I should phrase it . I don't want to seem ungrateful since jobs are very scarce nowadays and I guess I had to settle for this

Employers know how the job market is, that is why they know they can pay you $15 instead of $18, $20, or $24. If you leave the job another will take your place and be happy for the low pay. Do not leave until you have a new job.

Yes I know . Thank you. I know I will keep that in mind . Maybe if I get more experience with them I'm able to find a job that pays more or at least equal to what I was getting paid as an MA to start with since I don't have a lot of experience now .


Has 1 years experience.

Just keep getting experience and keep looking. $15/per hour is way too low for LVN in CA. Keep looking, you will find one :)


Specializes in Peds/outpatient FP,derm,allergy/private duty. Has 33 years experience.

$20 is high for MAs in my area, and some of my friends in home health (shift work, not visits) have been offered low wages in the vicinity of $15/hr. It's a supply and demand issue here, unfortunately. I have the feeling if I was just starting out with a new agency and no experience, I would be offered $15/hr.

I would go back to the MA job most likely if it were me, as it has been my experience that private duty/home health is not the type of nursing experience likely to help you too much if you apply to a hospital anyway. Just don't let your license lapse altogether. You can go on inactive - check with the BVNPT to get the details.

raekaylvn, LVN

Specializes in School Nurse, Peds HH, DD. Has 10 years experience.

$15 is pretty low... I'm making $18/hr in home health right now. When I was doing per diem visits, I was making $24.51/visit. Its ridiculous that you made more as a MA, but, I'd stick with the LVN job for now. Even though the pay is low, you'll gain experience while you look for a better paying job.

If you like to agency you're working with now, maybe find out what other agencies in the area are paying their LVN's. Then approach your boss and let her know that their wages aren't matching up with their competitors. Tell them that you love working for them, but with the cost of living, anything under $17-$18 is unacceptable.

There is always the option of working in a doctors office. Maybe you can check with your former MA employer and see if they'll take you on as a LVN making the same wages. Then you get your $20/hr plus experience.

Silverdragon102, BSN

Specializes in Medical and general practice now LTC. Has 32 years experience.

Moved to the CA forum