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15 Highest Paying States for Nurse Practitioners in 2021


Written By: Darby Faubion BSN, RN

Are you a nurse practitioner or considering becoming one? Have you wondered, "What is the highest paying state for nurse practitioners?” Perhaps you are considering moving to a new location and want to be sure you move to a place where you can earn a good income. For many people, earning potential is one of the most critical factors that leads to a decision about where they want to live and work. In this article, I am going to share the 15 highest-paying states for nurse practitioners in 2021 and provide some information about what it’s like for nurse practitioners who work there.


WHAT ARE THE HIGHEST PAYING STATES FOR NURSE PRACTITIONERS?

(Based on the latest salary data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the following are the 15 Highest Paying States for Nurse Practitioners in 2021.)

1. California

According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, California is the highest paying state for nurse practitioners. Entry-level nurse practitioners in the state earn over $50 hourly and average about $107,310 yearly. NPs with ten to nineteen years can earn up to $165,140 yearly. The average annual income of nurse practitioners of all experience levels in the state is $145,970.

All advanced practice nurses in California practice under the direction of the California Board of Registered Nursing. To become a nurse practitioner in California, candidates must complete an in-state program recognized by the State Board of Nursing or an equivalent program and earn certification through an accepted organization.

The following are a few programs that have been approved per the Board of Nursing's "Standards of Education for Nurse Practitioner Programs." Find a complete list of California-based approved programs here.

Azusa Pacific University
California State University, Dominguez Hills
Loma Linda University
University of Southern California
Western University of Health Sciences


States define a nurse practitioner's level of practice authority, which determines whether they may practice independently or must have partial or full supervision of a collaborating physician. Despite scrutiny from various physician groups, California Governor Gavin Newsom, signed a law known as AB 890, which gives California nurse practitioners the right to practice independent of physician supervision or collaboration. AB 890 makes California the twenty-ninth state to give nurse practitioners full practice authority.

California has been the inspiration of many movies, songs, and shows because of its innovative spirit and rich history. A few interesting things you may not have known about the state are:

◦ California is known as the “Avocado Capital of the World.”
◦ Also, in 1964, the cable cars in San Francisco were named the first moving National Historic Landmark.


CALIFORNIA NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $51.59 $8,940 $107,310
1-4 Years of Experience $56.84 $9,850 $118,220
5-9 Years of Experience $65.13 $11,290 $135,480
10-19 Years of Experience $79.39 $13,760 $165,140
20 Years or More Experience N/A N/A N/A
Average Earnings $70.18 $12,160 $145,970


2. New Jersey

Coming in at #2 among the highest paying states for nurse practitioners, New Jersey NPs earn an average annual income of $130,890. As you can see in the tables throughout this article, years of experience are one of the significant factors that determine a person's income earning potential. New Jersey nurse practitioners at the entry-level earn approximately $7,750 monthly or $93,050 yearly. With ten or more years of experience in the field, a nurse practitioner in New Jersey can earn between $141,750 and $177,010 or more.

According to the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP), the definition of “reduced practice” is as follows:

“State practice and licensure laws reduce the ability of NPs to engage in at least one element of nurse practitioner practice. State law requires a career-long regulated collaborative agreement with another health provider for the nurse practitioner to provide patient care, or it limits the setting of one or more elements of the nurse practitioner's practice.” (Source: American Association of Nurse Practitioners)

New Jersey state laws and nurse practice regulations have established nurse practitioner authority under reduced practice standards. The reduced practice authority that New Jersey NPs must follow is to have a joint protocol with a physician for prescribing purposes only. They may perform all other areas of practice independently.

Nurse Practitioners in the state The College of New Jersey offers nurse practitioner programs, including Adult/Gerontology Primary Care, Neonatal, and Family Nurse Practitioner. Rowan University also offers several nurse practitioner tracks.

Fun Facts About New Jersey

◦ New Jersey has more diners than any city in the world.
◦ Thom Edison invented the light bulb, phonograph, and motion picture projector in his Menlo Park laboratory in New Jersey.
◦ Atlantic City, New Jersey, is home to the longest boardwalk in the world.


NEW JERSEY NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $44.74 $7,750 $93,050
1-4 Years of Experience $51.73 $8,970 $107,600
5-9 Years of Experience $59.12 $10,250 $122,970
10-19 Years of Experience $68.15 $11,810 $141,750
20 Years or More Experience $85.10 $14,750 $177,010
Average Earnings $62.93 $10,910 $130,890


3. Washington

An Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner is a license category that includes nurse practitioners, certified nurse midwives, and certified registered nurse anesthetists. The Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission, an extension of the Washington Department of Health, regulates the practice of Washington’s advanced registered nurse practitioners (ARNPs). To earn the ARNP credential, candidates must complete an approved advanced practice program. Although the Nursing Commission does not allow nurse practitioners to practice outside of the scope of their training, nurse practitioners are permitted to focus on a sub-specialty and serve a specific population segment for which they were trained to provide care.

Washington State is the third-highest paying state for nurse practitioners. Nurse Practitioners in Washington begin their careers earning about $7,500 each month, the equivalent of $90,980 annually. In as little as one to four years, they can see an increase in annual income up to $111,610. The average earnings of nurse practitioners of all experience levels across the state are $126,480, with the most experienced earning more than $160,000 yearly.

Washington State University and Gonzaga University in Spokane are home to some excellent nurse practitioner programs.

Washington State is a state full of interesting facts and history

◦ It is the only state in the United States to be named after a U.S. president.
◦ During the Great Depression, hydroelectric dams were erected along the Columbia River in the hopes of increasing the production of electricity. By 1941, the Grand Coulee Dam, the largest dam in the U.S., was completed there.


WASHINGTON NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $43.74 $7,580 $90,980
1-4 Years of Experience $53.66 $9,300 $111,610
5-9 Years of Experience $61.39 $10,640 $127,700
10-19 Years of Experience $70.11 $12,150 $145,830
20 Years or More Experience $77.92 $13,510 $162,080
Average Earnings $60.81 $10,540 $126,480


4. New York

New York is not only one of the highest paying states for nurse practitioners, but it also ranks #2 in the number of nurse practitioners employed in any state. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are 14,850 nurse practitioners currently practicing in New York State, and there are 22,122 physicians who fall in the primary care category. The state population is 20.2 million, which means there is an average of one practitioner for every five hundred forty-six residents.

The average annual earnings of NPs in New York are $126,440, with entry-level nurse practitioners earning about $88,430 and those with twenty or more years of experience making $167,320. The New York State Department of Labor predicts a forty one percent increase in nurse practitioner jobs in the state, with more than 6,390 new jobs available by 2028.

The New York State Education Department issues nurse practitioner certifications in the following specialty areas: Family Health, Gerontology, Neonatology, Oncology, Pediatrics, Psychiatry, School Health, Perinatology, Women’s Health, Obstetrics, Holistic Care, and Palliative Care. New York State’s Education Law authorizes nurse practitioners in the state to have full practice authority allowing them to practice without the supervision or co-signature of a physician.

Columbia University offers five DNP nurse practitioner programs, and the University of Rochester also offers several nurse practitioner concentrations.

Interesting Facts About New York

◦ New York is a state with a rich history and cultural diversity. Liberty Island, home of the Statue of Liberty, is the location of the first hospital in the United States. The hospital opened on the island to provide housing to immigrants who were too ill or considered physically unfit to enter the country.
◦ Manhattan, New York, has the largest concentration of Chinese people Western Hemisphere. In this area, an average of 150,000 Chinese residents lives in a square mile land plot.
◦ The Hudson River, which flows exclusively within New York state, except for its end segment that forms a boundary between New Jersey and New York, flows in two directions. Because of high and low tides, which are usually experienced every twenty-four hours, the direction of the river's flow reverses. When the tide rises, the river flows northwards. When the tide falls, the river flows southwards toward the sea.


NEW YORK NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $42.51 $7,370 $88,430
1-4 Years of Experience $50.13 $8,690 $104,280
5-9 Years of Experience $59.63 $10,340 $124,020
10-19 Years of Experience $69.64 $12,070 $144,850
20 Years or More Experience $80.44 $13,940 $167,320
Average Earnings $60.79 $10,540 $126,440


5. Massachusetts

Massachusetts ranks #5 among the highest paying states for nurse practitioners, with NPs averaging $126,050 annually. Entry-level nurse practitioners earn nearly $45 hourly, while those with five to nine years of experience earn closer to $60 per hour. The most experienced nurse practitioners in Massachusetts earn an average of $167,850 annually.

On January 6, 2021, Massachusetts governor, Charlie Baker, signed legislation giving nurse practitioners in the state full practice authority. There are currently more than 13,000 advanced practice registered nurses in Massachusetts, 9,852 of whom are nurse practitioners. Alongside licensed physicians in the state, nurse practitioners provide care to the state’s population of about 7 million people.

Massachusetts has several nurse practitioners available at schools, including Northeastern University in Boston, Boston College in Chestnut Hill, and the University of Massachusetts Lowell.

Massachusetts Interesting Facts

Massachusetts is a state known for scenic landscapes, colonial landmarks, and picturesque villages. It was named after the native tribe, the Massachusett.


MASSACHUSETTS NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $44.73 $7,750 $93,040
1-4 Years of Experience $52.39 $9,080 $108,980
5-9 Years of Experience $59.60 $10,330 $123,960
10-19 Years of Experience $68.34 $11,850 $142,140
20 Years or More Experience $80.70 $13,990 $167,850
Average Earnings $60.60 $10,500 $126,050


6. Nevada

The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education has approved both master’s and doctoral level nurse practitioner programs in Nevada. Touro University, the University of Nevada at Reno, and the University of Nevada at Las Vegas offer the top nurse practitioner programs in the state. According to the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, there are ten accredited NP programs in Nevada, including post-baccalaureate to MSN, post-baccalaureate to DNP, MSN to DNP, and post-master's certificate programs.

Nevada, which comes in at #6 among the highest paying states for nurse practitioners, reports an average annual income of $119,890 for NPs. The state offers incentives, such as the National Health Service Corps and Nurse Corps Programs, to promote the placement of primary care nurse practitioners in underserved areas.

The job outlook for nurse practitioners in Nevada continues to look promising as there remains a shortage of primary care physicians. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most states have an average of 272 doctors per 100,000 residents. Nevada statistics suggest the state has 198 physicians per 100,000 residents. With a population of more than 3.2 million people, it is not surprising that nurse practitioners are called upon to fill the gap in the physician shortage.

Nevada Fun Facts

Although Nevada is well-known for the city of Las Vegas, often called theEntertainment Capital of the World or the City of Second Chances and Lost Wages, there is much more to the state.

◦ Nevada was the first state in the nation to adopt the Fifteenth Amendment, which gives rights for all people, regardless of race, to vote.
◦ The state is one of the largest gold producers worldwide.
◦ It is also home to Area 51, an airbase where many report having seen UFOs.
◦ The most extensive public works project in United States history, the Hoover Dam, is one of Nevada's greatest tourist attractions.


NEVADA NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $42.47 $7,360 $88,340
1-4 Years of Experience $49.33 $8,550 $102,610
5-9 Years of Experience $56.94 $9,870 $118,440
10-19 Years of Experience $64.73 $11,220 $134,640
20 Years or More Experience $76.68 $13,290 $159,490
Average Earnings $57.64 $9,990 $119,890


7. Minnesota

Minnesota is the twelfth largest state in the United States and has a population of over 5.5 million, two-thirds of whom live in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area. While tourism is the largest resource for the state, health industry careers are ranked in the top three.

Minnesota is rated #7 among the highest paying states for nurse practitioners, where they earn approximately $9,910 monthly or $118,900 yearly. Entry-level NPs make around $43 hourly or $90,040 annually. For every five to ten years of experience, nurse practitioners in the state generally see pay increases ranging from $12,000 to $15,000.

The Minnesota Board of Nursing has approved specific programs that meet the educational requirements for licensure as an advanced practice nurse practitioner. The following are a few of the approved programs.

◦ Winona State University offers post-BSN to DNP and post-MSN to DNP options for nurse practitioners.
◦ Saint Catherine University offers both MSN and DNP options with Pediatric Nurse Practitioner and Adult-Gerontological Nurse Practitioner concentrations available.
◦ Rasmussen University offers a Master of Science in Nursing Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Program.


A Few Interesting Facts About Minnesota

Minnesota is the twelfth largest state in the United States and has a population of over 5.5 million, two-thirds of whom live in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area. The state is known as a place of many waters and has been nicknamed "The Land of 10,000 Lakes." Minnesota has 11,842 lakes which cover more than ten acres and 69,200 miles of rivers and streams.


MINNESOTA NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $43.29 $7,500 $90,040
1-4 Years of Experience $51.95 $9,000 $108,050
5-9 Years of Experience $58.11 $10,070 $120,860
10-19 Years of Experience $63.86 $11,070 $132,820
20 Years or More Experience $70.72 $12,260 $147,090
Average Earnings $57.16 $9,910 $118,900


8. Wyoming

Wyoming is the tenth largest state in the U.S. but is the least populated. There are approximately 600,000 people who live in Wyoming and 450 licensed nurse practitioners actively practicing, an average of one nurse practitioner for every 1,300 residents. Nurse practitioners in Wyoming have full practice authority.

The state comes in at #8 among the highest paying states for nurse practitioners. While entry-level nurse practitioners earn a little more than $88,000 each year, NPs with five to nine years earn considerably more, with salaries averaging $115,380. The average annual wage for nurse practitioners in Wyoming is $118,810.

A few colleges and universities that offer nurse practitioner programs to Wyoming residents are the University of Wyoming and Georgetown University. Georgetown is in Washington, DC, but offers online nurse practitioner options approved by the Wyoming Board of Nursing.

Did You Know?

Wyoming is the tenth largest state in the U.S. but is the least populated. It is home to Yellowstone, which was designated as the first National Park in the United States and the world. Wyoming is known not only for its famous national parks but for diverse wildlife, pioneer museums, and natural hot springs.


WYOMING NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $42.42 $7,350 $88,230
1-4 Years of Experience $47.05 $8,160 $97,860
5-9 Years of Experience $55.47 $9,620 $115,380
10-19 Years of Experience $66.41 $11,510 $138,140
20 Years or More Experience $77.18 $13,380 $160,540
Average Earnings $57.12 $9,900 $118,810


9. Hawaii

Another interesting state in the top ten of the highest paying states for nurse practitioners is Hawaii, the Aloha State. While entry-level nurse practitioners earn about $73,000 a year, experienced nurse practitioners can earn more than $160,000, and the average earnings for all nurse practitioners in the state are $118,780.

Hawaii, like many states in the nation, is experiencing a physician shortage. Although more than 10,000 physicians hold licenses to practice in Hawaii, less than 4,000 are in active practice currently. With more than 1.5 million people, Hawaii's physician shortage makes the outlook for nurse practitioner jobs promising.

At the University of Hawaii, nurses can pursue a DNP at the Manoa or Milo campuses. The university offers Family Nurse Practitioner and Adult-Gerontology tracks.

If you are considering moving to Hawaii or becoming a traveling nurse practitioner, here are a few facts about the state you may find interesting.

◦ Hawaii is the only state made entirely of islands.
◦ Hawaii is made up of eight main islands and 132 other smaller islands.
◦ There are more than one hundred beaches that surround the island of Honolulu, Hawaii.


HAWAII NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $35.06 $6,080 $72,930
1-4 Years of Experience $46.05 $7,980 $95,790
5-9 Years of Experience $59.74 $10,360 $124,260
10-19 Years of Experience $69.88 $12,110 $145,350
20 Years or More Experience $78.62 $13,630 $163,520
Average Earnings $57.11 $9,900 $118,780


10. Oregon

The tenth highest paying state for nurse practitioners is Oregon. With entry-level salaries of $89,140 and salaries near $155,000 for the most experienced nurse practitioners, the average NP salary in Oregon is $118,600.

The Oregon State Board of Nursing certifies advanced practice nurses in all four nationally recognized specialties. However, nurse practitioners are the most common advanced practice role in the state, with nearly 3,500 nurse practitioners holding active licenses. All nurse practitioners are required to obtain national certification to practice in Oregon. The Professional Standards and Scope of Practice for Oregon NPs includes full practice authority.

The OSBN recognizes the following nurse practitioner specialties.

◦ Family
◦ Adult/Gerontology Primary Care
◦ Adult/Gerontology Acute Care
◦ Pediatric Primary Care
◦ Pediatric Acute Care
◦ Neonatal
◦ Women’s Health
◦ Nurse Midwife
◦ Psychiatric Mental Health


The University of Portland and Oregon Health and Science University both offer DNP options for would-be nurse practitioners.

Here are a few interesting facts about Oregon

◦ In 1971, Oregon became the first state to pass a law banning the use of non-returnable cans and bottles, reducing the incidence of litter and increasing container recycling.
◦ In 1994, Oregon became the first state in the United States to legalize physician-assisted suicide. This ruling resulted in Oregon’s suicide rate becoming one of the highest in the country.


OREGON NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $42.86 $7,430 $89,140
1-4 Years of Experience $50.31 $8,720 $104,640
5-9 Years of Experience $57.26 $9,930 $119,110
10-19 Years of Experience $63.51 $11,010 $132,110
20 Years or More Experience $74.50 $12,910 $154,950
Average Earnings $57.02 $9,880 $118,600


11. Arizona

Arizona, also known as the Grand Canyon state, spans 113,990 square miles and has a population of approximately 7.3 million people. Although there are 9,687 physicians and 4,790 nurse practitioners currently working in the state, there is only one practitioner for every 500 Arizona residents.

Greater than thirty percent of Arizona’s population live in areas that are underserved by primary care physicians. These statistics are likely why Arizona ranks as one of the highest paying states for nurse practitioners. The average annual income for nurse practitioners in the state is $117,480, equivalent to $56.48 hourly or $9,790 monthly.

The need for healthcare practitioners in the state led to nurse practitioners being given full practice authority. Now, after earning national certification, nurse practitioners in Arizona can engage in patient care without the restriction of physician oversight.

If you are searching for the right nurse practitioner program in Arizona, Arizona State University offers on-campus, online, and hybrid formats for potential students. Additionally, the University of Arizona at Tucson offers DNP and Post-Graduate Certificate programs.

Interesting Facts About Arizona

◦ Arizona, also known as the Grand Canyon state, spans 113,990 square miles and has a population of approximately 7.3 million people.
◦ The state is home to two of the top-rated waterfalls in the United States, Havasu Falls, and Grand Falls.
◦ The Arizona Trail is an 800-mile track dedicated to mountain biking, cross-country skiing, hiking, and horseback riding.
◦ Additionally, the only U.S.-based Seven Natural Wonders of the World, the Grand Canyon National Park, is in Arizona.


ARIZONA NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $43.16 $7,480 $89,770
1-4 Years of Experience $48.48 $8,400 $100,830
5-9 Years of Experience $55.75 $9,660 $115,950
10-19 Years of Experience $63.43 $10,990 $131,930
20 Years or More Experience $75.12 $13,020 $156,240
Average Earnings $56.48 $9,790 $117,480


12. Rhode Island

Rhode Island, one of the original U.S. colonies and the last to become a state, is the smallest state in the United States. It has a population of nearly 1.2 million people. There are 2,746 registered physicians and 934 nurse practitioners currently licensed in the state. Entry-level nurse practitioners earn a little more than $7,300 monthly or $88,100 annually. With five to nine years of experience, many NPs in the state can earn an additional $30,000 yearly. The average income of nurse practitioners of all specialties in Rhode Island is $117,300, making it one of the highest paying nurse practitioner states.

Are you looking for a nurse practitioner program in Rhode Island? The University of Rhode Island offers a Master of Science in Nursing with a Family Nurse Practitioner concentration and other nurse practitioner options. Rhode Island College also offers nurse practitioner options.

A Few Facts About Rhode Island

◦ Rhode Island, one of the original U.S. colonies and the last to become a state, is the smallest state in the United States.
◦ If history interests you, Rhode Island will not disappoint you, as it has a rich history, especially regarding religious freedoms. The state was founded by Roger Williams, who was excommunicated from Massachusetts because of his personal religious beliefs. He desired to provide religious liberty for all citizens and established the first Baptist church in Rhode Island in 1638.


RHODE ISLAND NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $42.36 $7,340 $88,100
1-4 Years of Experience $49.27 $8,540 $102,480
5-9 Years of Experience $56.46 $9,790 $117,440
10-19 Years of Experience $63.10 $10,940 $131,240
20 Years or More Experience $73.76 $12,790 $153,420
Average Earnings $56.39 $9,780 $117,300


13. New Mexico

Although it ranks in the top fifteen for the highest paying nurse practitioner states, New Mexico currently ranks 40th in the United States for access to medical care. Thirty-two of the thirty-three counties of the state are considered Health Professional Shortage Areas. In fact, according to data from the Kaiser Family Foundation, there are enough medical practitioners to effectively provide care to only 23.43% of the population of New Mexico.

According to the Association of American Medical Colleges, New Mexico has the oldest physician population in the country and only 3,011 in current practice, one factor that is believed to impact the healthcare professional shortage in the state. There are 1,760 nurse practitioners in New Mexico, which brings the number of practitioners providing care to the population of over two million to 4,771.

Although the cost of living in New Mexico is about twenty percent cheaper than in other states, nurse practitioners here are still among some of the top money earners in the country. The average yearly salary for nurse practitioners in New Mexico is $117,050, or $73.77 per hour.

New Mexico State University in Las Cruces, New Mexico, offers a DNP and Post-Graduate APRN Certificate program for candidates who wish to pursue a nurse practitioner degree.

You thought I forgot, didn’t you? Now for some interesting facts about New Mexico!

◦ New Mexico has more people with PhDs per capita than anywhere else in the nation.
◦ The Capulin Volcano National Monument, an extinct cinder cone volcano, once served as a marker along the Sante Fe Trail. From the top of the monument, you can see five different states.


NEW MEXICO NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $41.49 $7,190 $86,300
1-4 Years of Experience $47.52 $8,240 $98,850
5-9 Years of Experience $55.68 $9,650 $115,810
10-19 Years of Experience $63.29 $10,970 $131,650
20 Years or More Experience $73.77 $12,790 $153,440
Average Earnings $56.27 $9,750 $117,050


14. Connecticut

Connecticut, another of our featured highest paying nurse practitioner states, offers its more than 2,600 nurse practitioners an average yearly salary of $116,780. While entry-level nurse practitioners earn less in Connecticut than in some other states, experience does pay off. Within five years, many nurse practitioners pass the average salary earning $118,740, and within ten years, an NP in the state can make more than $136,000 annually.

If you are looking for a nurse practitioner program in Connecticut, Yale University (MSN and Post-Graduate APRN Certificate programs) and Sacred Heart University ( MSN and Post-BSN to DNP ) are great options.

Connecticut Interesting Facts

Connecticut is known as the “Constitution State” because the “Fundamental Orders of Connecticut,” which were first adopted in 1639, were used as a model to create the United States Constitution. Additionally, the state has the highest individual income per capita than anywhere else in the country. While the national average for individual income is approximately $51,480, Connecticut has an average individual income of $70,000.


CONNECTICUT NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $37.38 $6,480 $77,750
1-4 Years of Experience $48.06 $8,330 $99,970
5-9 Years of Experience $57.09 $9,900 $118,740
10-19 Years of Experience $65.63 $11,380 $136,510
20 Years or More Experience $77.91 $13,510 $162,060
Average Earnings $56.14 $9,730 $116,780


15. Texas

Texas has the third-highest number of nurse practitioners in the country, with over 14,680 NPs holding current licenses and certifications. Nurse practitioners in the state earn from $86,480 to over $157,000, with an average yearly income of $116,700, making it rank #15 among the highest paying nurse practitioner states.

Despite a shortage of primary care physicians, which has created a need for qualified healthcare providers to fill the gap, Texas is still one of the remaining states where nurse practitioners have restricted practice authority. The Texas Nurse Practice Act states that nurse practitioners are required to have written “prescriptive delegation” consent from a supervising physician.

Several colleges offer nurse practitioner programs in Texas, including West Texas A&M University and the University of Texas-Austin.

Texas Fun Facts

The Lone Star State is typically associated with guns, oil, cowboys, and world-famous barbecue. Although you will find those things in Texas, some other interesting things about the state may surprise you.

◦ Although it may not be considered a “stiff drink” by a cowboy, the first frozen margarita machine was invented in Dallas, Texas.
◦ The theme park, Six Flags Over Texas, is named for six countries that have ruled over the Texas territory: Spain, France, the Republic of Texas, Mexico, and the United States.
◦ During World War II, the Texas power grid was established to help ensure the state's factories producing war supplies were self-sustaining. To this day, Texas is the only state that uses its own power grid, independent of the other United States.


TEXAS NURSE PRACITIONER SALARY
Level of Experience Hourly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $41.58 $7,210 $86,480
1-4 Years of Experience $46.86 $8,120 $97,460
5-9 Years of Experience $54.71 $9,480 $113,800
10-19 Years of Experience $63.08 $10,930 $131,210
20 Years or More Experience $75.55 $13,100 $157,150
Average Earnings $56.11 $9,730 $116,700


My Final Thoughts


The goal of this article was primarily to answer the question, “What are the highest paying states for nurse practitioners?” While the 15 highest paying states for nurse practitioners in 2021 featured in this article offer excellent earning opportunities for NPs, there are many factors to consider before choosing a place to live and work. For instance, if you prefer to have your own practice or partner with another nurse practitioner, you may wish to find a state that gives nurse practitioners full practice authority. Additionally, as you consider where to practice, if you are already a nurse practitioner and are planning to move, be sure to verify whether the state where you want to work is part of the Nurse Licensure Compact.


Darby Faubion BSN, RN
Darby Faubion is a nurse and Allied Health educator with over twenty years of experience. She has assisted in developing curriculum for nursing programs and has instructed students at both community college and university levels. Because of her love of nursing education, Darby became a test-taking strategist and NCLEX prep coach and assists nursing graduates across the United States who are preparing to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX).