Nurse Practitioners: Salary Overview
Nurse practitioners are advanced practice registered nurses who coordinate patient care and may provide primary and specialty healthcare.
Their job responsibilities include taking and recording patients’ records, performing physical exams and observing patients, creating patient care plans, performing and ordering diagnostic tests, operating medical equipment, analyzing test results, evaluating patients’ response, consulting with other healthcare professionals, and conducting research.
They typically specialize in a certain population of people: such as geriatrics, pediatric health, or mental health.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for nurse practitioners was $109,820 which means that half of all workers in this profession earned less than this amount while half earned more.
Salaries vary on a variety of factors, including experience level, area of expertise, specialty, industry, and region of employment.
The lowest 10 percent reportedly earned less than $82,460 per year while the top 10 percent earned more than $184,180.
Nurse Practitioner Salary by Industry
According to BLS, nurse practitioners held 189,100 jobs in the United States in 2018, most of them working for offices of physicians or in hospitals.
The average annual wage reported by nurse practitioners who were employed in offices of physicians was $108,930 while those who worked for general medical and surgical hospitals reportedly earned $115,790 per year of average.
The average annual wage reported by nurse practitioners in outpatient care centers was $119,920.
Nurse practitioners who worked for offices, universities, and professional schools reportedly earned $105,310 per year on average while those employed by offices of other health professionals reportedly earned $108,660 per year on average.
The top-paying industries for nurse practitioners were community food and housing, emergency and other relief services, and religious organizations- fields where the average annual wages for this profession were $139,140 and $128,970 respectively.
Higher than average wages were also reported by nurses who worked for residential intellectual and developmental disability, mental health, and substance abuse facilities, a sector where workers in this profession reportedly earned $123,900 per year, on average.
There are many other factors that determine a nurse practitioner’s salary, including his/her specialty, education, and experience level.
Nurse Practitioner Salary by Specialty and Employment Status
According to Medscape ARPN Compensation Report, the median annual wage reported by nurse practitioners who hold the adult gerontology acute care certification was $114,000 while those who were certified in women’s health reportedly earned $98,000 per year on average.
Nurse practitioners who had psychiatric mental health certification earned $114,000 per year.
The average annual wage reported by nurse practitioners with an adult-gerontology primary care certification was $111,00.
Those with a family certification reportedly earned $107,000 a year, on average.
Nurse practitioners who were certified to practice pediatric primary care reportedly earned $101,000 per year.
Salaries also vary depending on employment status.
According to the same report published, nurse practitioners who were employed by a medical group or hospital earned $109,000 per year on average while those who were employed by a private nurse practitioner practice reported annual wages that averaged at $99,000.
Self-employed/independent contractors reportedly earned $108,000 per year on average.
Some nurse practitioners also receive productivity and/or incentive pay which can supplement their earnings with several thousand dollars per year.
According to the Medscape report, nurse practitioners who received productivity pay earned a mean of $111,000 per year while those who didn’t receive productivity pay earned $107,000 annually, on average.
Nurse Practitioner Salary by Education
Although the minimum requirements for entry-level employment in this profession is a master’s degree, holding a doctoral degree can help improve your earning prospects.
According to the Medscape, the average annual gross income reported by nurse practitioners with a doctoral degree was $114,000 while those who had only a master’s degree reportedly earned $107,000 a year on average.
* Based on information from the May 2021 salary report from the BLS. The figures represent accumulated data for all states of employment for Nurse Practitioners. BLS data represents averages and medians for workers at all levels of education and experience. This data doesn't represent starting salaries.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.