Best Paying RN Jobs

Updated on February 26, 2024

The nursing profession offers a wide array of opportunities and specializations, many of which come with competitive salaries. This blog post delves into the top ten best-paying RN jobs, providing insights into each role’s average salary, job description, responsibilities, and required education.

Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist

  • Average Salary: $203,090
  • Job Description: CRNAs provide anesthesia and related care before, during, and after surgical, therapeutic, diagnostic, and obstetrical procedures. They also provide pain management and some emergency services.
  • Responsibilities: Assessing patients for anesthesia, administering anesthesia, monitoring patient vital signs during procedures, and providing post-anesthesia care.
  • Required Education: Master’s degree in Nurse Anesthesia.

Neonatal Intensive Care Nurse

  • Average Salary: $136,592
  • Job Description: NICU nurses care for critically ill or premature newborns in the neonatal intensive care unit, providing highly specialized care.
  • Responsibilities: Monitoring newborns, administering medications, using medical equipment, and supporting family members.
  • Required Education: BSN with specialized NICU training.

Pain Management Nurse

  • Average Salary: $124,006
  • Job Description: These nurses help manage patients’ pain post-surgery or those suffering from chronic conditions.
  • Responsibilities: Assessing patient pain, creating pain management plans, administering medications, and educating patients about pain management.
  • Required Education: BSN, often with additional certification in pain management.

General Nurse Practitioner

  • Average Salary: $121,610
  • Job Description: NPs serve as primary and specialty care providers, offering advanced nursing services to patients and their families.
  • Responsibilities: Diagnosing and treating illnesses, prescribing medications, and performing routine checkups.
  • Required Education: Master’s or Doctoral degree in Nursing.

Certified Nurse Midwife

  • Average Salary: $120,880
  • Job Description: CNMs provide care to women, including gynecological exams, family planning services, prenatal care, labor and delivery support, and neonatal care.
  • Responsibilities: Conducting exams, delivering babies, providing postpartum care, and offering family planning education.
  • Required Education: Master’s degree in Nurse Midwifery.

Health Policy Nurse

  • Average Salary: $120,333
  • Job Description: These nurses combine healthcare and public policy to advocate for changes that improve public health and nursing practices.
  • Responsibilities: Researching, analyzing, and advocating for health policies, educating professionals and the public, and consulting on health policy projects.
  • Required Education: Master’s degree in Nursing, often with a focus on healthcare policy.

Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner

  • Average Salary: $117,870
  • Job Description: Psychiatric NPs assess, diagnose, and treat patients with psychiatric disorders, providing mental health care services.
  • Responsibilities: Conducting psychiatric evaluations, prescribing medication, and providing therapy.
  • Required Education: Master’s or Doctoral degree in Psychiatric Nursing.

Registered Nurse First Assistant

  • Average Salary: $106,176
  • Job Description: RNFA’s assist surgeons during operations and are responsible for patient care before, during, and after surgery.
  • Responsibilities: Handling tissue, providing surgical exposure, assisting in hemostasis, and suturing.
  • Required Education: BSN with additional certification as an RNFA.

Nursing Administrator

  • Average Salary: $104,830
  • Job Description: Nursing administrators oversee the nursing staff and ensure that patient care, nursing practices, and organizational policies are in alignment.
  • Responsibilities: Managing nursing staff, budgeting, policy development, and quality improvement initiatives.
  • Required Education: Master’s degree in Nursing Administration or Healthcare Administration.

Family Nurse Practitioner

  • Average Salary: $102,107
  • Job Description: FNPs provide comprehensive healthcare services to individuals and families across the lifespan.
  • Responsibilities: Diagnosing illnesses, conducting exams, prescribing medication, and managing overall patient care.
  • Required Education: Master’s or Doctoral degree in Nursing.

Final Thoughts

Choosing a career in nursing can lead to rewarding opportunities, both professionally and financially. Specializing in one of these high-paying nursing roles can provide not only a significant income but also the chance to make a substantial impact on patient care and the healthcare system as a whole.

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I’m a firm believer that information is the key to financial freedom. On the Stilt Blog, I write about the complex topics — like finance, immigration, and technology — to help immigrants make the most of their lives in the U.S. Our content and brand have been featured in Forbes, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, and more.

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