What Is the Salary of a Gerontology Nurse?

A gerontology nurse is a registered nurse (RN) who cares for the elderly. Wages for these professionals depend on your employer, years of experience and geographical location. Read on to find out more about how much you can make as a gerontology nurse. Schools offering Long-Term Care Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Salary Overview

Salaries for RNs specializing in geriatrics ranged from $40,888-$73,942 in February 2014, according to PayScale.com. The median income at that time was $54,961. On the other hand, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported a median salary of $65,470 for RNs as a whole (www.bls.gov). Your salary can be impacted by your employer, experience and geographical location.

Employer Type

Gerontology nurses may work in nursing homes, hospitals, senior community centers or in health care facilities for the elderly. They may also care for elderly patients in private homes. RNs who worked in hospitals earned higher salaries than those who work for home health care services and nursing care facilities in May 2012, according to the BLS. Average salaries for RNs working in selected industries include:

  • General hospitals - $69,490
  • Specialty hospitals - $73,610
  • Home health care - $65,530
  • Physicians' offices - $62,120
  • Outpatient care centers - $71,200
  • Nursing care facilities - $61,220
  • Psychiatric and substance abuse hospitals - $66,210

Years of Experience

PayScale.com reported that experienced RNs specializing in geriatrics earned a median wage of $59,288 in February 2014. The same source reported that entry-level RNs in general made a median wage of $50,152, while one at the mid-career level earned a median wage of $58,123. Late-career RNs received a median wage of $62,990.

Location

According to May 2012 data by the BLS, the most RNs as a whole worked in the states of California, Texas and New York, with average salaries being $94,120, $66,350 and $74,100, respectively. Average wages were highest in California, though they were also high in Hawaii ($84,750), Massachusetts ($83,370), Alaska ($80,970) and Oregon ($78,530). South Dakota and Rhode Island had high RN job concentrations and offered respective average salaries of $52,800 and $73,070. However, South Dakota was also one of the lowest-paying states, along with Iowa ($52,540), Alabama ($55,270) and West Virginia ($54,490).

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