The 4 Best Nursing Specialties Based on Salary

We often think of nursing as a grueling, thankless job, and while that can be the case, it can still be a fulfilling and lucrative career. If you’re interested in a career in nursing, let us tell you about the best nursing specialties based on salary. Consider one of these paths when entering nursing school!

The 4 Best Nursing Specialties Based on Salary


According to salary, Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) hold the top nursing specialty. CRNAs are so important in healthcare because they work closely with surgeons and anesthesiologists in administering anesthetics and trauma care to patients undergoing surgery.

CRNAs hold many responsibilities as they’re the ones who will perform a patient’s physical assessments, administer and maintain the anesthesia during the procedure, and oversee the patient’s recovery. Becoming a CRNA requires additional schooling and certification, but the reward is worth the commitment as the average CRNA salary is roughly $200,000, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Nursing Administrator

If you enjoy organizing people and resources, you may enjoy becoming a nursing administrator. As the name suggests, a nursing administrator is a nurse who oversees the administrative side of nursing and has less to do with direct patient care.

Nursing administrators are responsible for hiring nursing staff, overseeing department budgets, and other administrative tasks. It’s an important job, which is why it’s also one of the best-paid nursing specialties. It requires years of experience in mid-level nursing administration and a Master of Science degree with an administration track.

Neonatal Intensive Care Nurse (NICU Nurse)

If you want to get into nursing to help the most vulnerable of us and work with babies, you may feel right at home as a NICU nurse. NICU nurses provide round-the-clock care for infants and communicate with parents and families.

It’s an essential job in the NICU and hospitals everywhere, so there’s a strong demand for their services, and the average salary for a NICU nurse is well above six figures. Like other specialties, NICU nurse positions require advanced schooling and certifications, such as Low Risk Neonatal Nursing (RNC-LRN), National Intensive Care Nursing (RNC-NIC), and the Neonatal Resuscitation Program (NRP).

General Nurse Practitioner

If you prefer a more autonomous career with more freedom to work independently, you can do that as a general nurse practitioner. A nurse practitioner is more like a physician than a nurse, as they’re licensed to operate autonomously, specialize, and work within private practices.

Nurse practitioners often fill the gaps in areas with few licensed physicians, like rural areas with few medical resources. However, nurse practitioners are in such demand in so many parts of the country that the average salary for one is approximately $118,000, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.


Now you know the best nursing specialties based on salary, so which one interests you for your career? There are still many other nursing specialties to pick from that also pay well, so if you don’t find something that interests you here, you still have plenty of options available to you!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.