Nurse Anesthetist Salary Guide
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How Much Do Nurse Anesthetists Make?
- Nurse anesthetists are the highest paid nursing specialty.
- In many states, nurse anesthetists report average salaries of over $200,000.
- Nurse anesthetists also benefit from strong projected job growth.
What Do Nurse Anesthetists Do?
As highly specialized nurses, nurse anesthetists provide anesthesia care in hospital settings. They also benefit from the highest nursing salary for any specialization.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), nurse anesthetists earned a mean annual wage of $ 202,470 in May 2021. The average certified registered nurse anesthetist salary thus exceeds any other specialty, including nurse practitioners and nurse midwives.
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Nursing careers are in high demand, which makes them an exceptional career path for the future. Current nurses or those considering a nursing degree benefit from learning about nurse anesthetist salaries. In addition to career planning resources, our guides preview what salary you can expect in a nurse anesthetist career.
What Is the Average Nurse Anesthetist Salary?
The median certified registered nurse anesthetist salary exceeded $195,000 in May 2021, according to BLS data. And the profession reported a mean annual wage of over $200,000. As a result, nurse anesthetists are the highest-paid nurses. Nurse anesthetists can increase their earning potential by negotiating salaries.
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How Much Do Nurse Anesthetists Make in Your State?
The average nurse anesthetist salary differs by state. However, in every state, nurse anesthetists make six-figure salaries. Some states report higher salaries and demand for nurse anesthetists, making them good options for people considering nurse anesthetist jobs. Learn more about the nurse anesthetist average salary in your state below.
Data sourced from the BLS
The Highest-Paying States for Nurse Anesthetists (by Median Salary, 2022)
- New Jersey
Data sourced from the BLS
Job Growth for Nurse Anesthetists
The healthcare sector may likely see strong job growth. In fact, the BLS projects healthcare occupations to add more jobs from 2020-2030 than any other sector. Like other advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs), nurse anesthetists may benefit from strong job growth. According to BLS data, the demand for APRNs will grow 45% from 2020-2030, making it one of the fastest-growing occupations.
Current nurses considering career advancement or those weighing a career change can benefit from the high demand for nurse anesthetists.
Does More Education Lead to a Higher Nurse Anesthetist Salary?
A BSN prepares nurses for specialized roles in healthcare organizations. Many employers prefer to hire nurses with a BSN over those with an associate degree. An RN-to-BSN program can help nurses qualify for higher-paying roles. Nurses can also benefit from job market resources. Nurse anesthetists must hold a bachelor's degree to qualify for graduate programs.
OR nurses work in operating rooms where they assist surgeons. Also known as perioperative nurses or surgical nurses, they prepare patients for surgical procedures, assist during procedures, and monitor patients after a procedure.
Emergency room nurses work in triage settings where they quickly assess patients and communicate with other healthcare providers. They often act as the first point of contact for incoming patients, so the role requires strong communication skills.
Critical Care Nurse
Also known as ICU nurses, critical care nurses work in intensive care settings where they treat patients facing acute illnesses and injuries. They bring a background in critical care and an understanding of specialized equipment. These nurses also communicate with other healthcare providers and patient families.
A master's degree prepares nurses for specialized roles and often leads to a salary increase. Roles like nurse practitioner or clinical nurse specialist require an MSN, which includes clinical training. Students can enroll in an online MSN program, with many nursing schools offering affordable MSN degrees. The degree also prepares nurse anesthetists for a doctoral program.
Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
Acute care nurse practitioners specialize in working with patients who present with acute conditions. They work in emergency rooms, surgical centers, and urgent care clinics where they provide patient care as healthcare specialists. Acute care nurse practitioners must hold an MSN.
Clinical Nurse Specialist
As advanced practice RNs, clinical nurse specialists bring graduate-level training. They specialize in areas like gerontology and pediatrics, where they provide care to patients with an emphasis on prevention. Many clinical nurse specialists supervise teams of nurses to improve the quality of care.
Women's Health Nurse Practitioner
Women's health nurse practitioners specialize in obstetrics and gynecological care. As specialists in women's health, these nurse practitioners can diagnose conditions, prescribe treatments, and monitor patients. They also educate patients on women's health issues.
As the terminal degree in nursing, a DNP prepares nurses for the most advanced roles in the field. Unlike a Ph.D. in nursing, a DNP emphasizes practice and patient care. In 2025, nurse anesthetists will need a DNP to become a certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA). Prospective CRNAs can enroll in an online DNP program.
Nurse anesthetists specialize in administering pain medication. They meet with patients before surgical procedures and administer anesthesia. During a procedure, nurse anesthetists monitor patients. They also offer pain management services to patients.
Nurse midwives provide obstetric and gynecological care to patients. They act as the primary care provider for patients who require prenatal or labor and delivery services. Nurse midwives also deliver babies and provide wellness care. They may have an MSN or DNP degree.
Neonatal Nurse Practitioner
Neonatal nurse practitioners specialize in caring for premature infants and newborns who require medical interventions. They typically work in a NICU where they treat high-risk babies. Neonatal nurse practitioners can practice with an MSN or a DNP degree.
Frequently Asked Questions About Nurse Anesthetist Salary
What is the highest paid nurse anesthetist?
Nurse anesthetists made an average salary of over $200,000 per year in May 2021, as per the BLS. In some locations, nurse anesthetists earned even higher salaries. For example, nurse anesthetists in the greater New York City area earned a mean wage of $247,850 per year, while those in San Antonio made $262,560.
A certified nurse anesthetist salary depends on several factors, such as location, experience, and specialized training. For example, Payscale reports that nurse anesthetists who specialize in obstetrics made salaries above the average for the profession.
Are nurse anesthetists in high demand?
Nurse anesthetists and other advanced practice RNs benefit from high demand. The BLS projects 45% job growth for nurse anesthetists, nurse midwives, and nurse practitioners from 2020-2030. That represents much faster job growth than the national average of 8%. It also translates to around 29,400 new jobs each year in the field.
These advanced practice roles require specialized training and a graduate degree. Current nurses or those considering healthcare careers can research graduate programs to become a nurse anesthetist or another type of advanced practice RN.
How long does it take to become a nurse anesthetist?
Becoming a nurse anesthetist takes several years. Nurse anesthetists must hold a registered nursing license and a bachelor's degree, which typically takes four years. Currently, nurse anesthetists can earn a master's degree from a nurse anesthesia program to enter the profession. This takes 2-3 years.
Keep in mind that applicants to nurse anesthesia programs typically need 1-2 years of experience in a surgical care setting. Starting in 2025, nurse anesthetists will need a DNP instead of a master's degree. These programs typically take three years. In total, nurse anesthetists spend close to a decade gaining degrees and experience.