3 Lowest Earning Nurse Practitioner Specialties- Still Good News for NP Salaries

According to ADVANCE for NP's and PA's, nurse practitioners working full time can expect to make an average of $90,583.  Nurse practitioner salaries, however vary significantly based on practice site and location.  Earlier this month, we discussed the highest paying nurse practitioner specialties, but which specialties have the lowest incomes?

1. Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

Pediatric nurse practitioners provide care to children from birth to age 21.  They perform routine child physicals as well as manage acute and chronic illness among children.  PNP's typically work in outpatient specialty clinics, pediatric clinics, health departments and schools. With an average salary of $82,101, pediatric nurse practitioners have the third lowest income among nurse practitioners. Bad news?  We think not!  $82,101 is still an excellent salary.  Pediatric NP's also have the joy (usually!) of dealing with children.

2. College Health Nurse Practitioner

Nurse practitioners working in student health clinics on college campuses earn on average $80,521 for a 12 months of work or $60,684 for 9 months of work.  College health NP's treat students for both acute and chronic illness in the primary care setting.  Should NP's in this field be concerned that they earn the second lowest income among nurse practitioners?  No!  We see the lower salary as a trade-off for a better schedule.  College health clinics are typically closed on holidays and often have significantly reduced hours or are closed during the summer and school breaks.  This means you still get to be an NP and earn at least $60,000 a year while taking summers and holidays off.

3. Elementary School or Secondary School Nurse Practitioner

An elementary school or secondary school NP can expect to make on average $69,945.  Similar to our reasoning for the lower college health NP salaries, this is not bad!  Elementary school NP's have amazing work schedules; they do not work on evenings, weekends or holidays.  They also get the summers off making up for their lower incomes. Working as an elementary school NP is ideal for mothers as it will offer them a work schedule that allows them to be home when their children are not in school.  The ability to earn nearly $70,000 a year while having ultimate flexibility is a great opportunity!