Choosing to become a licensed practical nurse is a wise and noble career path for individuals who are compassionate and well suited for the profession. Nursing can be a financially rewarding occupation as well. Florida has a huge population of elderly people, and those people need nursing care.
There are, however, a number of factors that may influence a nurse’s salary. It is pertinent that you research this information before choosing nursing as a profession.
There are several factors that account for fluctuations in the average LPN salary in the US. Some of those factors are:
- Years of experience
- Level of education
- Geographical location
- Specialty certifications
LPNs in Miami Earn a Terrific Salary
As with most occupations, nursing salaries will vary with geographical locations. The local economy of an area will determine the cost of living and wages. This will influence how much the healthcare industry is willing to pay. In Florida, LPNs working in the Miami/Ft. Lauderdale/West Palm Beach area make the most, with the average pay currently at $44,050 annually.
Rural areas typically pay lower salaries than do larger metropolitan areas, although the salaries of nurses in various cities across the United States can also vary greatly. In the Northwest rural part of Florida(Fort Walton Beach-Crestview-Destin), LPNs average approximately $35,770 annually.
LPNs Working on the Coast Make the Most!
Miami boasts the highest median salary for licensed practical nurses, while Tampa still pays mid range. In fact, the top five cities in Florida known to pay the highest hourly wage for LPNs are all on the coast, including Boca Raton, Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Daytona Beach, and Delray Beach.
Studies also reveal some rather surprising statistics. Male nurses typically earn a slightly higher hourly wage than do their female counterparts. Male LPNs working on the coast are paid more than their female colleagues. This may be due to more males working in management positions.
Education also plays a role when it comes to an LPN’s salary. By furthering her or his education and becoming more specialized, a nurse will increase her or his earning power. For instance, an LPN manager can earn more than $15,000 dollars more than a staff nurse in the same facility.
Shift premiums are another dynamic when calculating nurse’s salaries. While all shifts can be long and hard, the midnight shift pays the highest salaries. Overtime, weekends, and holiday pay are also factors to be taken into consideration.
When it Comes to Pay, Experience Matters!
Experience in the nursing field will also make a difference when it comes to an LPN’s salary. The longer a nurse has been working, especially in the same facility, the higher the pay. An LPN who has been working in the same private nursing home in Miami for 25 years may make $32 dollars an hour, whereas a new hire LPN will start out at far under that number.
Medical benefits must also be accounted for when considering the salary of a licensed practical nurse. As with any other profession, benefits can be a major player when calculating income versus outgo. Most health care facilities offer fair medical benefits to their employees.
Different health care facilities will also pay different salaries, whether it be a hospital, clinic, or as a private care nurse to an individual. According to the Florida Hospital Association, there are currently 303 hospitals in Florida.
While salary may be a motivating factor in your decision to enter the field of nursing, it cannot be the driving factor. For every dollar an LPN is paid, he or she probably deserves to earn three. It’s a tough job and requires dedication, selflessness, and hard work.
Difference Between LPN Salary & LVN Salary
We know that in Florida, there are Licensed Practical Nurses(LPNs). This is the case in most states. There are, however, a couple of states where these nurses aren’t referred to as LPNs. They are called LVNs, or licensed VOCATIONAL nurses. In Texas and California, LVNs are the same as LPNs. Only their titles are different. The LVN salary is the same as the LPN salary. The salary between LPNs in Florida and LVNs in California are almost the same. LVNs in California make about 3% more than practical nurses in Florida.
So, if you’re in Florida and you hear someone refer to a licensed vocational nurse, there’s a pretty good chance that person is from California or Texas, not beautiful Florida!