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Should ICU get more pay than floor nursing?!?

MICU   (52,994 Views 152 Comments)
by francoml francoml, ASN, RN (Member)

francoml is a ASN, RN and specializes in Critical Care at Level 1 trauma center.

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Reading all the comments here makes me think that pay would really depend on experience and level of education.

And yet, in the end, it mostly comes down to supply and demand. Believe me, if hospitals could offer minimum wage and get enough RNs to staff the units, they'd be paying RNs minimum wage. If they couldn't get enough people to work for them to staff their units at the wages they're offering, they would raise the wages. It's pretty much that simple.

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So get in contact with the managers of those units and tell them you're willing to pick up extra for the incentive pay.

Not all nurses make the same...education, experience, specialty backgrounds, etc all play a role in salary determination. So either pick up extra and make some extra cash or just be happy that you have a job in the first place.

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Ski_RN has 20 years experience and specializes in Critical Care.

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There was a time, many years ago, that "specialty" nurses (ICU, CCU, OR, cath lab, ED) were paid more than "floor" nurses. Not any more...at least in the metro area where I work. It is all dependent on years experience and some bonus' for certifications (CCRN, CVRN, etc). I, too, work in a 42 bed, very high acuity, Level I Trauma critical care for the last 20 years. It would be nice if the facility I work for would recognize the specialty units, but really? In this day and age, it's good to have a job.

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jtmarcy12 has 15 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Med-Surg, Oncology, Neurology, Rehab.

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Hey sign me up NOW!!. If there is a med-surg unit that "just pass meds", someone please let me know I would love to work that unit!! That would be a piece of cake!:sarcastic:

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I graduated from nursing school 40 years ago with the perception that RNs who worked in outpatient clinics or MD offices did so because they were the ones who were too stupid or incapable of working in a hospital. After working my first six months on a med surg floor as an RN, I moved to another city and took a job doing telephone triage for six physicians in a clinic practice. I quickly discovered how much I did NOT know about the field of ambulatory care and began to respect the nursing intelligence possessed by the experienced clinic RNs. I felt totally inept for about four months while I learned. The nursing knowledge base each RN may possess is usually more specific to the area in which he/she works. Believe me, I have yet to work anywhere and in any capacity as an RN where it was 'easy' or where I was automatically due a higher salary because it was 'hard'.

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cdsga has 37 years experience and specializes in ICU, PACU, OR.

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Salaries and incentives are sometimes used to recruit and retain nurses. Specialty units require extra training and those who want to be in those areas must do the work to either go through an intensive training course or have the expectation of becoming certified in that specialty in a certain amount of time. To compare ICU to the Med/Surg floor is not advised as some have stated before different skill sets are required. While med/surg nurses utilize other nurses like IV teams to start lines or use wound care nurses to do formal dressing changes, the ICU nurse may be required to do all those things. Drip calculations, ACLS, PALs, and other requirements are added into the mix. So time and money may be needed by those nurses to pay for such if the hospital doesn't provide that for them. Not every hospital is the same. Many new grads (in my facility) are required to work in a med/surg unit first before transferring to a specialty unit. Some qualified candidates are hired into a new grad internship, so it all depends on the facility and the skill mix on the unit. If you want more money, investigate and be willing to put in the extra time to learn more specialty skills.

There is no putting down of one type of nursing to another. In the end it all depends on choices, available spots, and where your future career goals are leading you.

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I have no choice than to do my own IVs at night . We have no IV team nurses at night . We are also very independent because we have less resources . The day shift is a whole different story . They don't even try to start an IV line . Lol

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BrandonLPN has 5 years experience as a LPN.

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And there's even some LTC nurses who make more than all y'all.

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