Part Time / Retirement

Nurses General Nursing


if some nurses are working part time should they be concern about retirement after they're done working? do hospitals and other medical facilities offer some kind of retirement plan for part time (nurse) employee? how about matching your 401k and roll over of previous 401k or other retirement plans? which hospitals offer the most when it comes to retirement (ie, state hospitals, va, private/public, etc)? can somebody let me know before i go to nursing school? :uhoh21:

llg, PhD, RN

13,469 Posts

Specializes in Nursing Professional Development.

You are asking great questions -- ones that more nurses should be asking early in their career.

Almost every facility (certainly all the larger ones) offer retirement plans -- and the overwhelming majority allow participation in those plans by nurses working part-time. However, many nurses (particularly those workimg part time) do not choose to participate fully in those plans.

Hospitals often offer employment options for part-time employees that give them "more cash now instead of benefits" such as paid vacation time, sick time, health insurance, retirement plan participation, etc. As many married women get their insurance benefits through their husband's employment, many nurses take that option of "more cash now" and give up their benefits. This puts a little more cash in their pockets now (which is fully taxable), but it costs them later in that they do not build up a nest egg of money for their retirement years (or paid sick time and vacation time to use in the event of a serious illness).

So ... be sure to investigate all of your options thoroughly and understand them well before making a decision.

Some hospitals offer traditional pension plans based upon years of service, but not many offer these kinds of plans any more. Most offer 403-B plans, which are the same as 401-K plans, but designed for non-profit institutions. Usually the hospital will match the employee's contributions up to a certain amount and there are a variety of investment options -- very similar as with other businesses.

I hope that helps,


Trauma Columnist

traumaRUs, MSN, APRN

97 Articles; 21,237 Posts

Specializes in Nephrology, Cardiology, ER, ICU.

I never was concerned about retirement until I turned 40 and realized I wasn't getting any younger. So...I went ahead and went full-time - 40 hours/week vs the 36 I had been doing. I have always socked away the full 6% that our hospital allows for the 401. I also went back to school for a BSN and will start an MSN program soon in order to have stronger earning power. I plan to work until I'm 66 because that is when I can collect full social security benefits. Good luck - you bring up some very interesting topics.

kae rn

50 Posts

Those are all great questions and so happy to hear you are thinking early. I started at a nonprofit place of employment, loved by job, then stayed home with my kids and was not nursing for a few years. Now I am back, thinking retirement as well as college education for my 4 kids. I am now at a state funded hospital associated with a college. I really wish knowing what I know now, that I would have started there as my first and only job. Seniority really counts, retirement is good, and my kids can go to college for 1/2 tuition. There are certainly other benefits than retirement. I hope to catch up on my retirement plans, while my kids are getting a break on college education. Certainly something else to consider, I know you are young and probably have no children, but someday you may. College ed fees are growing faster than ever before. Just another thing for you to consider.

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