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Nursing

nurse volunteerThe news has been filled with images of devastated communities in the wake of hurricanes and other natural disasters. Communities are ravaged by flooding and storm damage, and many of the residents have been displaced to shelters. Along with the homes that have been damaged, many hospitals, medical offices, and other healthcare facilities are dealing with the same aftermath and struggle to serve their patients. Volunteer nurses are stepping up to assist and helping to take the burden off of local caregivers. [click to continue…]

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Six Important Questions to Ask in Nursing Interviews

by Soliant Health on June 14, 2016

nursing interview questionsInterviewing for a new position within a new company can be a nerve wracking experience. Even if you’re going in knowing that you are a great fit for the position, it can sometimes be intimidating and you may walk away from the interview without finding out crucial information that will help you to determine if the company is a great fit for you. It’s important to make a list of questions that can help you decide if you’ll be happy in your new position, should you receive a job offer. Here are a few suggestions that can help you get started. [click to continue…]

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Five Nursing Specialties to Consider

by Soliant Health on May 31, 2016

nursing specialtiesWhether you’re a nursing student trying to choose a career path or an experienced RN who is looking for a change of pace, making decisions about a nursing specialty takes a lot of careful consideration. You’ll want to look at daily job requirements, average pay scales, opportunities for growth, and other job features before making your final decision.  While there are dozens upon dozens of specialties to choose from, here are five specialties that have great opportunities available for the right person. [click to continue…]

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Staying Motivated as a Healthcare Traveler

by Soliant Health on April 19, 2016

happy healthcare travelerWhat can be more motivating than visiting a new city every few months and taking on the challenge of a new travel assignment? Although working as a healthcare traveler can be an exciting career option, everyone has moments when they may feel a little restless or want to do something different.

Whether you’re on your third or tenth healthcare travel assignment, maintaining enthusiasm for the job helps prevent burnout and increases job satisfaction. But how can you keep that enthusiasm going? There are several things you can do to stay motivated and keep your job fresh. Consider some of the following suggestions. [click to continue…]

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In our ‘Nursing Blog of the Month’ feature, every month we introduce a new blog that we enjoy reading and know you will too. This month we feature Brock Anderson from Mightynurse.com. 

Mighty Nurse is a support website which empowers nurses in a world that takes advantage of their unrelenting support for humanity, kindness and skills.

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Tell us a little bit about your background. What led you into nursing and how long have you been a nurse? I’ve always enjoyed helping people and what better way to help people than pursuing a career in Nursing?! I’ve been in the nursing industry for close to 10 years now.

What inspired you to start blogging?

The healthcare industry is always evolving and over the years I’ve witnessed a lot of changes in the technology space. I think that the healthcare industry was behind on modern technology for so many years, and it’s just now starting to play catch up. I first started blogging when I was in nursing school and realized that there were hardly any sites that empowered Nurses online. So I started blogging about anything and everything related to Nursing.

What can our readers expect to find on your blog? And is there anything they can get involved with?

Mightynurse.com is full of resources for Nurses and Nursing students. We even have stuff for retired Nurses! We have everything from personal nursing stories, to forums, to NCLEX prep material, to nurse cartoons and much more! Our website is a place for the entire nursing community so there‘s a lot for any Nurse to do to get involved on our site.  We encourage nurses to send us their personal stories (http://www.mightynurse.com/contribute-to-mighty-nurse/) and invite people to browse around our forum boards (http://www.mightynurse.com/ask-a-nurse-forums/)

How do you think the public perception of what nurses do compares to the reality of the job?

The view the media portrays of Nurses cracks me up. A majority of the time TV shows and movies are almost the exact opposite of what being a Nurse is actually like. Being a Nurse is tough work! It takes a lot of schooling and knowledge to obtain that Nursing license and I think the media often overlooks that.

Finally, is there one piece of advice you would give to a nurse at the start of their nursing career?

Just like anything in life, the start is always the hardest. There will be days when you second guess yourself and consider giving up. Every Nurse goes through that and you’re not alone. Just keep in the mind the end reward and make time to take care of yourself. I think Dory from Finding Nemo said it best “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming.”

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Nursing Pay Rates, Explained

by Tera Tuten on September 24, 2015

Online lists stating the average pay for nurses nationwide can vary wildly and often suggest that huge rises or drop have occurred, but what’s the final word on how (and what) nurses actually get paid under various circumstances? We take a look at the most up-to-date numbers and what the statistics can – and can’t – tell us.

Soliant Nursing Jobs by State

Pay scales, low ranges

While some lower-paying states average in the $20s for per-hour pay, stats show that some areas within the top ten highest paying states also average as low as $26.75. This raises the question that these lists may not be averaging just RN pay into these salary numbers.

A registered nurse working at a big city hospital – on average – can earn about $40/hour, though a licensed practical nurse in a small-town rest home might not make half that wage.

It’s important to remember that hourly wages don’t reflect the extra hours and higher pay of overtime, which almost all nurses work voluntarily and/or as part of their contract, “as needed.” We spotted one salary site poster, who identified themselves as an RN say: “you might have to work 80 hours a week but even at $20-25/hour, you can still bring in $100K a year”

Pay scales, high ranges

nursing pay rates explained staffNursing in America is a vast profession, covering millions of people employed in thousands of different positions and hundreds of job types: a chief nurse anesthetist can make more than $160,000 a year, five times what some LPNs bring home in the same time.

Keep in mind that, while some scales may be brought down in average hourly pay by including LPNs with RNs, other scales from job sites and the like may be raised by including numbers from higher-paid senior and specialist nurses. These lists also tend to be perpetuated over many other sites and blogs which may not verify the source or accuracy of the information for themselves or put the information in its proper context.

 Location, location, location

As of May 2014, the BLS reported that RN salaries across various states varied massively but according to these latest stats, the average American RN makes about $32 an hour, or about $66,000 a year.

Annual Mean Wage of RN 2014

However, RNs working in the highest paying states can earn far more than nurses elsewhere and among the highest-paying regions of those states RNs can earn even more. For example, while the median pay for RNs in California is $46.38/hour, or about $96,470/year, RNs in the modest 51,000-resident city of Watsonville, CA, typically make more than $65/hour, or about $136,570 per year.

Annual Mean Wage of RN 2014 by area

Here’s how annual salaries in the highest-paying areas of America’s highest-paying state for RNs play-out:

Area of California Average RN Wage 2014
Santa Cruz-Watsonville CA $136570
San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City CA Metropolitan Div $134260
San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont CA $130480
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara CA $130030
Oakland-Fremont-Hayward CA Metropolitan Division $127480

 

If you think that’s astronomical for a non-specialist RN, a nurse in rural Soldad, CA made $331,346 in 2008, including $211,257 in overtime. Between 206 and 2013, she was paid nearly $2 million and was one of 42 nurses in California to make more than a million dollars in the 6 years between 2006 and 2012. While that is an extreme example, here’s how much a typical RN in the five highest paying states brings in:

Highest paying states in 2014 (median pay):

State Hourly / Annual Pay
1. California $46.38 / $96,470
2. Hawaii $43.38 / $90,220
3. Massachusetts $41.12 / $85,530
4. Alaska $40.22 / $83,650
5. Oregon $39.12 $81,3800

 

Contrast that with what you’d be making as an RN in the five lowest-paying states in America:

Lowest paying states* (median pay):

(*Not including statistics for Guam or Puerto Rico)

State Hourly / Annual Pay
50. South Dakota $25.04 / $52090
49. Iowa $25.58 / $53220
48. Alabama $26.39 / $54900
47. Mississippi $26.41 / $54940
46. West Virginia $26.59 / $55310

 

Pay rates by training, specialty, and type of work environment

Nursing salaries vary not only between states and cities, but also between specialized knowledge and skills, positions, and environment. For example, while a staff nurse in an occupational health department might make a medium annual salary of $78,060, a transplant coordinator can bring in an average $81,333.

Nurses in clinics typically earn less than nurses working in hospitals, while nurse administrators, nurse practitioners, and specialists such as anesthetists make significantly more than general RNs. Here’s a look at some typical annual salaries for such positions:

  • Clinical Nurse Specialist: $97,542
  • Head Nurse: $98,283
  • Nurse Practitioner: $97,568
  • Nurse In Charge of Intensive Care Unit: $100,403
  • Certified Nurse Midwife $96,323
  • Nursing Director: $131,279
  • Certified Nurse Anesthetist: $166,445
  • Chief Nurse Anesthetist: $190,869

Nurses at work

Overall pay -vs- regional cost-of-living

Having said all that, it’s useful to bear in mind that the highest-paying nursing job may not necessarily give you the highest standard of living. By moving from an RN position in Indianapolis, Indiana (earning an average annual salary of $61,650) to Philadelphia, you’d have to be making $79,028 a year to have the same lifestyle you had back at the “crossroads of America”. Unfortunately, a typical RN salary in Philadelphia is about $ 74,030 a year.

Wondering what your quality of life will be if you’re earning a particular nursing salary in a particular state or city? Check out PayScale.com’s Cost Of Living Calculator.

America’s largest profession

With more than 3 million RNs alone (more than 4 million nursing and nursing-related staff, including nurse aides and assistants), nursing is the single most common profession in America. It’s no wonder then that nursing salaries and hourly wages seem to vary so widely across regions, workplaces, and employment circumstances and that the official statistics are so hard to decipher.

How do the official salary figures for nursing pay rates compare to your experiences? Let us know what you think in the comments.

Soliant Nursing Jobs by State

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Other Soliant blogs on nursing pay rates:

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