Staff Nurse Salary
Average Staff Nurses in the United States make around $29.95 per hour. Earnings for this group are mostly affected by the specific employer, followed by the particular city and experience level. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. Although a fair number have medical coverage and the greater part have dental coverage, roughly one in five claim no health benefits at all. There are far more female Staff Nurses who answered the questionnaire than men, making up 88 percent. The data in this summary comes from the PayScale salary survey.
Job Description for Staff Nurse
Staff nurses generally work in hospitals and long-term care facilities. These nurses may carry out assessments of patients and administer care and medications as needed, and must also keep notes regarding patients' care and development. They may also create discharge plans for individual patients.Read More...
Staff nurses are often in charge of managing groups of nursing attendants and may schedule their shifts and delegate tasks. Strong communication skills are important in order to work well with nursing assistants, physicians, other medical staff, and patients. Working as a staff nurse may also require working in high-pressure situations, as well as long hours on occasion.
A bachelor’s degree in nursing and registered nurse certification are generally required for this position, and there are both part-time and full-time positions available. Some staff nurses may specialize in particular fields, such as pediatrics or emergency care; in these cases, strong knowledge and skills in the specific department are important so that the best possible care can be administered.
Each patient has separate needs, so it is important to assess them individually. Though it is important to help them heal physically, it is equally important to provide emotional support for their well being, so strong people skills are essential in this position. Staff nurses must also be physically strong, as their shifts may require a lot of standing, walking, and lifting.
Staff Nurse Tasks
- Insert central lines, evaluate placement, and monitor vascular access device (VAD) sites on a daily basis.
- Educate nursing staff on PICC line placement.
- Discuss with patients the risks and purpose of PICC line placement, as well as homecare.
- Perform IV insertions and maintain catheters.
Common Career Paths for Staff Nurse
At the upper end, Staff Nurses who move into a Family Nurse Practitioner role can end up with a hefty increase in pay. The average income for Family Nurse Practitioners is a much higher $82K per year. As Staff Nurses progress in their field, many go on to become Registered Nurses. In fact, this transition is more common than anything else, and median pay for the role is $56K. Another common career choice for Staff Nurses is to move into a Clinical Nurse Manager role — this promotion usually pays $73K.
Registered Nurse (RN) Job Listings
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Popular Employer Salaries for Staff Nurse
Staff Nurses flock to HCA, Inc., DaVita Inc., Tenet Healthcare Corporation, Oakwood Hospital, and Indiana University (IU) Health, highly regarded companies that employ a generous number of people in this profession. The biggest paychecks can be found at Dignity Health — the median salary there is $102K. Staff Nurses will also find cushy salaries at Tenet Healthcare Corporation (+$71K), Oakwood Hospital (+$68K), and Fresenius Medical Care Holdings, Inc. (+$64K).
Also sliding in at the lower end of the scale are Barnes Jewish Hospital ($54K), SSM Health Care ($55K), and Indiana University (IU) Health ($58K).
Popular Skills for Staff Nurse
Survey respondents exploit a significant toolbox of skills in their work. Most notably, skills in Recovery / Post-Anesthesia Care Unit, Oncology, Labor & Delivery, Birthing, and Intensive Care Unit are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 7 percent and 15 percent. At the other end of the pay range are skills like Geriatrics and Rehabilitation. Most people familiar with Medicine / Surgery also know Acute Care.
Pay by Experience Level for Staff Nurse
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Experience does not seem to be a strong driver of pay increase in this role. Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $56K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $63K on average — a distinctly larger sum. Staff Nurses bring in $68K after working for 10 to 20 years. Individuals who have achieved more than 20 years of experience don't seem to earn much more than people who have 10 to 20 years under their belts; the more senior group reports an average income of $72K.
Pay Difference by Location
For Staff Nurses, busy San Diego offers a higher-than-average pay rate, 49 percent above the national average. Staff Nurses will also find cushy salaries in Los Angeles (+23 percent), New York (+17 percent), Boston (+15 percent), and Philadelphia (+15 percent). Trailing the national average by 14 percent, St. Louis is the market with the smallest paychecks. Employers in Columbus and Atlanta also lean toward paying below-median salaries (11 percent lower and 5 percent lower, respectively).
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Key Stats for Staff Nurse
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