Nurse Practitioner Salary – What to Expect
With the nationwide nursing shortage keeping nurses in demand, many experienced RNs are seeing an opportunity to move up the ladder and enter advanced practice by becoming a nurse practitioner (NP). With a Master's of Science in Nursing (MSN) or a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree with an NP emphasis, high-level nursing can be the next career step for ambitious nurses looking to earn more money. With a variety of desirable niche concentrations available, nurse practitioners regularly earn over $100,000 per year.
Salary Comparison Tool
This tool will allow you to easily search and compare the average salaries of nurses for many cities and locations across the U.S. You can search by city and state. Salary data is provided through the BLS.
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There are a few factors that will determine a nurse practitioner's salary:
Type of Employer
NPs can work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, private practices, government agencies, and more. Typically, private practices offer the most room for salary negotiation, while hospitals and government agencies may have budgeted salary schedules that may not be as flexible.
City and state can make a dramatic difference in NP salary, as things like cost of living must be factored in. Larger urban cities and more populous states tend to offer higher salaries, while rural areas may fall on the lower end of the national average. Currently, the average salary for a nurse practitioner is $115,800 annually. New York falls on the higher end of the spectrum, with the average salary of an NP in the state landing at $122,550 annually, while Alabama NPs are on the lower end of the spectrum, with an annual average salary of $99,570 based on the latest available BLS data from May 2019.
Experience & Degree Level
NPs with a high level of experience and applicable certifications can usually earn more than those just starting out, and degree level may make an impact as well. While a graduate-level degree is standard for NPs, those with a doctorate degree (DNP) may have access to the most prestigious and highest-paying NP roles. See DNP salaries.
What Is the Highest-Paid Nurse Practitioner Specialty?
This can vary depending on all the factors listed above. Many organizations have NPs that are unionized; therefore pay is periodically negotiated. Other organizations pay depending on experience and practice. Hospital systems and large organizations tend to pay more than private offices.
Certain specialties have a higher demand for NPs; therefore higher pay may be offered. With baby-boomers and the elderly population dominating healthcare in the United States, Adult-Gerontology, Family, and Women's Health NPs have more opportunities in the job market, and therefore may offer higher compensation.
Based on the factors listed above, many prospective nurse practitioners are curious to know how much they will earn per hour. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the national mean hourly wage for nurse practitioners is $53.77 as of May 2019 (latest available data). Most NPs earn an hourly median wage of between $39.14 and $73.16.
The top-paying industries for nurse practitioners are as follows (mean):
- Community Food and Housing, and Emergency and Other Relief Services, with a mean hourly wage of $66.90
- Religious Organizations, with a mean hourly wage of $62.00
- Residential Intellectual and Developmental Disability, Mental Health, and Substance Abuse Facilities, with a mean hourly wage of $59.57
- Grantmaking and Giving Services, with a mean hourly wage of $59.50
- Outpatient Care Centers, with a mean hourly wage of $57.65
Nurse Practitioner Salary Table
|Location||Total Employment||Annual Salary|
|District of Columbia||840||$110,420|
Table data taken from 2018 BLS (http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes291171.htm)
Nurse practitioners can enjoy entering a wide variety of specialties, depending on where their skills and interests lie. Most MSN and DNP programs allow NPs to choose a concentration as part of their degree. Some common NP specialties and corresponding salary info are found below.
Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Salary
Acute Care NPs typically work in hospitals and other urgent care settings, performing patient rounds and assisting in procedures. Acute Care Nurse Practitioner salaries range from $86,000 to $125,000 annually, but the median national salary is $101,342 according to PayScale.
Adult Gerontology Nurse Practitioner Salary
Adult Gerontology Nurse Practitioners work with patients in the teenage years and beyond. They may perform physicals and exams, educate patients and families on good health practices, and more. This type of NP may go into acute or primary care. Adult Gerontology NP salaries range from $73,000 to $110,000 annually. The median national annual salary comes in at $90,102.
Emergency Nurse Practitioner Salary
Emergency NPs work in hospital and urgent care settings, ordering diagnostic tests and administering aid to emergency patients who cannot wait to see their regular physician. Emergency NP salaries range from $77,000 to $126,000 annually, with the average salary landing at $96,841.
Family Nurse Practitioner Salary
The Family Nurse Practitioner, or FNP, cares for patients across the lifespan, from infancy to old age. They perform many of the tasks that a physician might perform, including routine physicals and exams, and emphasize preventive health measures. FNP salaries range from $79,000 to $117,000 with $94,232 being the average salary.
Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Salary
A Pediatric NP treats and cares for children in the pediatrics wing of a hospital or medical facility, assisting physicians and ordering tests, prescribing medication or therapy, and counseling families. Pediatric NP salaries range from $73,000 to $112,000 with an average annual salary of $89,764.
Women's Health Nurse Practitioner Salary
A Women's Health Nurse Practitioner treats female patients with a variety of women's health or reproductive issues. They may screen for breast or reproductive cancers, educate and provide care for pregnant women, and more. Women's Health NP salaries range from $72,000 to $113,000 annually. The average annual salary for this role lands at $91,270.
All specialty NP salaries sourced from PayScale.com.