4 Florida Cities Among the Lowest-Paying for Nurses as Staffing Shortages Continue

L. Cane

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average wage for American nurses is $82,750 per year. In the state of Florida, that average drops to around $72,000. However, nurses in some Florida cities are paid significantly lower than the state average of $72,000, according to a new survey.

Determining Which States Pay Nurses the Most?: The website SimpleNursing wanted to look at nursing salaries across the United States to find out which states paid nurses the most. It found that the pay difference between some states was very sharp. For example, nurses in Salinas, California, make $94,000 per year while nurses in Florence, Alabama, make $57,3000 per year. To account for these substantial differences, the site considered each area's cost of living when comparing salaries.

What Criteria Was Used?: SimpleNursing used data from the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics on salaries. The site also considered the industry, salary, gender, and age of nurses. Finally, Advisor Smith’s Cost of Living Index was considered.

How Did Florida Fare?: In addition to Florida nurses earning approximately $10,000 per year less than the national average, 4 Florida cities were mentioned in the 10 worst cities for nursing pay. They were: Sebring, Panama City, Port St. Lucie, and Daytona Beach. Even when considering the cost of living, nurses living in those four cities had adjusted salaries in the low or mid $50,000 range, which was almost half of what nurses living in top-paying cities earn.

Nursing Shortages in Florida: According to the Florida Center for Nursing, Florida is experiencing a critical shortage of registered nurses and licensed practical nurses. This shortage is expected to worsen. According to the Florida Hospital Association, 70% of hospitals in Florida are already experiencing critical staffing shortages, and 25% of critical care nurses are considering leaving the field.

Incentives to Attract and Retain Florida Nurses: To combat this issue, some healthcare systems have begun to offer financial incentives to healthcare workers, such as helping to pay off student loans or paying for college tuition.

In addition, the state of Florida recently announced the Hometown Heroes program, which provides down payment assistance to critical workers like nurses.

California Nurses Earn the Most: If money is the only consideration, California is arguably the most profitable place to be a nurse. 8 California cities showed in the top 10 best cities for nursing pay, with an adjusted salary of close to $100,000 per year.

Here are the 10 highest paying cities for nurses, according to SimpleNursing.

  1. Sacramento, CA: adjusted salary: $96.6K
  2. Vallejo, CA: adjusted salary: $95.7K
  3. Stockton, CA: adjusted salary: $95.3K
  4. Modesto, CA: adjusted salary: $94.8K
  5. Salinas, CA: adjusted salary: $94.0K
  6. Merced, CA: adjusted salary: $91.4K
  7. Redding, CA adjusted salary: $88.5K
  8. Bakersfield, CA: adjusted salary: $88.1K
  9. Bay City, MI: adjusted salary: $88.0K
  10. Flint, MI: adjusted salary: $87.5K

Here is SimpleNursing's list of the top 10 worst-paying cities for nurses:

  1. Sebring, FL: adjusted salary: $52K
  2. Panama City, FL: adjusted salary: $55.4K
  3. Port St. Lucie, FL: adjusted salary: $56.2K
  4. Florence, AL: adjusted salary: $57.3K
  5. Kahului, HI: adjusted salary: $57.7K
  6. Daytona Beach, FL: adjusted salary: $57.7K
  7. State College, PA: adjusted salary: $58.5K
  8. Springfield, OH: adjusted salary: $58.7K
  9. Decatur, AL: adjusted salary: $58.7
  10. Blacksburg, VA: adjusted salary: $59.2

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