What Is the Average Salary for a Neonatal Nurse Practitioner?

Neonatal nurses are responsible for the basic medical care of newborns and their mothers. Read this article to learn more about neonatal nurse practitioners and their average salary. Schools offering Nursing degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Salary Overview

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that nurse practitioners in general earned an average salary of $97,990 in May 2014 (www.bls.gov). The median wage for these professionals was $95,350. In September 2015, PayScale.com reported that neonatal nurse practitioners with 0-5 years of experience made a median of $82,799, while the median pay for those of all levels of experience was $88,121. Additionally, neonatal nurse practitioners often qualify for benefits and bonuses. PayScale.com reported in September 2015 that bonuses could add up to $9,720 to these workers' salaries.

Important Facts About Neonatal Nurse Practitioners

Professional Certification Most states require nurse practitioners to be nationally certified
Key Skills Empathy, organization, leadership, attention to detail, problem solving, critical thinking, clear verbal communication, customer focused
Work Environment Typically set hours; however, unusual hours may occur due to patient needs
Similar Occupations Registered nurses; physician assistants; nursing managers; physical therapists, nurse case managers

Salary by Industry

In May 2014, the BLS reported that most nurse practitioners in general worked for the offices of physicians and general hospitals, with average wages of $96,570 and $102,330, respectively. Outpatient care centers offered an average wage of $99,760 at that time. The highest-paying industry for these healthcare professionals was personal care services, which paid an average wage of $118,080. Specialty hospitals also paid a high average wage of $114,410.

Salary by Location

According to the BLS, salaries in metropolitan areas were the highest, which were followed by suburban locations and rural areas, respectively. A nurse practitioner working in the New York-White Plains-Wayne, NY-NJ, metro area made an average salary of $110,690 in May 2014. Workers in the Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, CA, metro area earned $115,300 at that same time.

The BLS also reported that the five states with the top average pay for these professionals in May 2014 were Hawaii ($115,870), Alaska ($115,670), California ($115,460), Oregon ($111,160) and Massachusetts ($107,230). Workers in some states - including Wyoming, South Carolina, Pennsylvania and Illinois - earned some of the lower average annual wages, according to the BLS.

Salary by Experience

According to September 2015 salary figures from PayScale.com, neonatal nurse practitioners made a median of $87,696 with 5-10 years of experience and $103,180 with 10-20 years of experience. The median salary increased to $105,507 with 20 years of experience or more.

Career Overview

Neonatal nurse practitioners care for mothers and newborn babies during and immediately after delivery. They also assist doctors throughout the birthing process. Neonatal care is delivered during the first month after birth as well.

This care is classified by three levels. The first level of care focuses on healthy babies, and the second level focuses on babies with illnesses or those in need of special care. The third level of neonatal care is reserved for babies in critical condition or on life support.

The BLS reports that nurse practitioners must first be licensed registered nurses in their state. Nurse practitioners must have a minimum of a master's degree, but many have doctoral degrees. The BLS expects employment of all nurse practitioners to increase by 35% between 2014 and 2024.

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