Whether you are a nurse practitioner, studying to become one, or are just entering nursing school, you may be wondering how much nurse practitioners make. Nurse practitioner salaries are influenced by a variety of factors, one of which is location.
Location is a very important aspect to consider and there are many choices. In the United States, for instance, there are many states to choose from. Those states then have many cities to select from within them. Smaller cities, suburban areas, metropolitan areas, rural communities, and so on.
Healthcare is a growing need in each of these areas. It’s time to narrow in on a more specific area after you’ve decided what general area you would like to practice. What are some cities in which you could see yourself practicing as a nurse practitioner?
As we explore nurse practitioners’ salaries in Virginia, we are going to look at them city by city. We will also look at the salary ranges for a variety of specialties and how Virginia’s nurse practitioner pay compares with the rest of the country.
Virginia Nurse Practitioner Starting Salary
Just starting their careers, nurse practitioners can expect to earn a decent salary in Virginia. Entry-level is usually defined as those just receiving their degree and having less than two or three years’ experience. This can vary depending on a number of factors, including specialty and city.
On average, though, an entry-level nurse practitioner in Virginia can expect to make $81,570 per year, which breaks down to $6,800 per month, and $39.22 per hour. For a recent graduate coming out of an educational program, this is an attractive and competitive starting salary.
Virginia Nurse Practitioner Average Salary
As with any job and career, the salary for nurse practitioners in Virginia is dependent on a number of circumstances. Some of these factors include location, specialty, type of practice, years of experience, shift differentials, degrees and certifications, and many others.
However, just looking at averages, a nurse practitioner makes about $109,660 per year in Virginia. That breaks down to $9,140 per month and $52.72 per hour.
Virginia Nurse Practitioner Years of Experience Salary
In general, the more experience a person has, the more money they’ll earn. Over the course of their careers, nurse practitioners will see their pay increase. Pay based on experience is one of the most important determining factors to be aware of when considering nurse practitioner salaries.
The average entry-level nurse practitioner salary in Virginia is $81,570 per year, or $39.22 per hour. Five or six years after becoming a nurse practitioner, you’ll be earning an average of $108,530 per year. That’s an almost $27,000 increase in salary in just a few short years.
Looking at the mid-range experience level, nurse practitioners with ten years of experience can expect to make an average of $125,770 per year. Nurse practitioners with twenty years and more experience can make over $141,000 each year.
|Years of Experience||Hourly||Monthly||Annual|
|1-4 Years of Experience||$44.48||$7,710||$92,510|
|5-9 Years of Experience||$52.18||$9,040||$108,530|
|10-19 Years of Experience||$60.47||$10,480||$125,770|
|20 Years or More Experience||$67.95||$11,780||$141,340|
Virginia Nurse Practitioner Salary By City
We’re all familiar with everything in real estate being about “location, location, location.” This principle also applies to nurse practitioner salaries. Considering the location is crucial when determining the range of salaries for nurse practitioners in Virginia.
Again, it’s important to consider the type of area you’re looking for — Metropolitan, small city, suburban, or more of a rural town. The pay for each location varies based on the need.
The greater the demand for nurse practitioners in an area, the higher the pay and more competitive benefits and compensation. These are important factors to consider when choosing a location.
Here we will look at some major cities within Virginia.
- Population: 53,016 in 2019
- Home to James Madison University, which is a public research university with over 20,000 students
- Average nurse practitioner salary: $87,340 per year
- Population: 79,009 in 2020
- Known as the City of Seven Hills, located along the banks of the James River
- Average nurse practitioner salary: $97,120 per year
- Population: 226,610
- Fourth-most populous city in Virginia
- Average nurse practitioner salary: $108,620 per year
- Population: 100,011 in 2020
- Largest city in Virginia west of Richmond
- Average nurse practitioner salary: $104,480
- Population: 459,470 in 2020
- Most populous city in Virginia
- Average nurse practitioner salary: $103,710 per year
Virginia Nurse Practitioner Benefits and Compensation
A salary is obviously a major factor to consider when choosing a profession and where to work. But, there is another critical factor to consider as well, and that is the benefits. Which benefits and compensation are offered? Benefits and compensation are also negotiable for nurse practitioners, just as their salaries are.
In addition to the average yearly salary of $109,660, nurse practitioners in Virginia can find themselves earning an extra $46,000 to $66,000 in benefits and compensation. The range here is dependent on if the nurse practitioner position is in the private sector or in a local or state government position.
Among the benefits and compensation options that are most popular and appealing to nurse practitioners are:
- Health insurance
- Paid time off (PTO)
- Employer-sponsored pension plan
- Professional liability insurance
- Continuing education allowance
Virginia Nurse Practitioner Practice Setting Salary
As stated previously, nurse practitioners earn varying salaries based on many factors. Among these is the type of practice setting.
Nursing practitioners can make more or less than their counterparts, depending on where they work. Essentially, the difference is a result of shift work versus a traditional schedule and risk.
A job in a hospital, for instance, would involve shifts that are higher risk and less appealing (holidays, weekends, nights, etc). As nurses working in hospitals deal with higher risk and have tougher-to-staff shifts, their pay will tend to be higher.
Nurse practitioners working in a hospital in Virginia can make an average of $113,200 per year. In contrast, nurse practitioners in lower-risk areas with more appealing shifts will earn less, making about $103,480 per year.
Each of these variables should be weighed based on a person’s preferences and goals. The higher pay may be worth it if one does not mind working weekends and holidays.
On the other hand, working weekends and holidays may not be ideal for one’s families, so they may be willing to take a lower salary and not have to work on those occasions. Fortunately, there are various practice settings that can accommodate different goals and situations.
|Type of Practice Setting||Hourly||Annual|
|Other Healthcare Provider Offices||$51.58||$107,290|
|Colleges and Universities||$49.75||$103,480|
Virginia Nurse Practitioner Specialty Salary
The specialty of a nurse practitioner is also a major determinant of salary. Nurse practitioners in Virginia have a wide variety of specialties to choose from. Nursing practitioners choose their specialties based on their personal goals and interest areas.
Among the areas in which nurse practitioners specialize are pediatrics, family care, psychiatry, emergency medicine, and women’s health.
Following a nurse practitioner program, specific certifications may be required by certain specialties. The certifications required for each specialty vary. Some people may get bored working in one area for any length of time.
A nurse practitioner might specialize in one area for a time before moving on to another. It’s not uncommon for nurse practitioners to specialize in a few different fields during their careers.
Listed below are just some of the specialties nurse practitioners can go into and the average salary for each specialty.
Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner
- Treat patients from early adulthood to older adults
- Primary care or acute care
- Hospitals, long-term care facilities, nursing homes, hospice facilities, private practices, specialty clinics
- Average salary of $110,480 per year in Virginia
Aesthetic Nurse Practitioner
- Treat and work with patients with cosmetic issues
- Four core specialties are: plastic or aesthetic surgery, ophthalmology, dermatology, and facial plastic surgery
- Private settings, including medical spas, dermatology offices, private practices
- Average salary of $104,470 per year in Virginia
Dermatology Nurse Practitioner
- Treat diseases and medical conditions that affect the surface of the skin
- Appealing hours for work-life balance
- Dermatology clinic, plastic surgeon’s office, medical spas, research
- Average salary of $108,960 per year in Virginia
Emergency Nurse Practitioner
- Treat patients with a varying level of acuity, in an emergency room or urgent care setting
- Diagnose and treat in a fast-paced environment
- Can specialize in adult or pediatric emergency medicine
- Average salary of $140,820 per year in Virginia
Family Nurse Practitioner
- Treat patients ranging from infants to adults
- Wide range of family-focused care from health promotion to chronic illnesses
- Acute care centers, physician offices, hospitals, long-term care facilities, hospice centers, private care with patient’s home, urgent cares, correctional facilities, private practice
- Average salary of $108,370 per year in Virginia
Neonatal Nurse Practitioner
- Treat high risk-infants, usually in a neonatal intensive care unit within a hospital
- Provide support and education to families for the infants they’re treating and work closely with the neonatologist
- Hospitals, clinics, home health care services, patient transport, research
- Average salary of $116,330 per year in Virginia
Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
- Treat children of all ages, from birth up to the age of 21
- Health promotion, along with diagnosis and treatment while working in collaboration with a pediatrician
- Hospitals, urgent cares, specialty clinics, physician offices, schools, private clinics
- Average salary of $113,360 per year in Virginia
Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner
- Treat and care for those with mental illness, and their families
- Practice in offices, outpatient centers, residential facilities, and inpatient hospitals
- Average salary of $114,130 per year in Virginia
Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner
- Treat women for a variety of health services, including acute and chronic health problems that are unique to women
- Health care, health promotion, and disease prevention usually in an office or clinic setting
- Hospitals, clinics, family planning clinics, prenatal clinics, women’s correctional facilities, private practices
- Average salary of $104,960 per year in Virginia
Nurse Practitioner Pay in Virginia Compared to Other Nursing Careers
A nurse practitioner in Virginia makes over 30% more on average than a registered nurse. Nursing assistants don’t have a license, but they are certified. Among the nursing profession, nursing assistants make $29,490. Nurse anesthetists top the salary charts among nursing professionals.
Nurse anesthetists make an average of almost $179,180 per year in Virginia. That’s about $70,000 more than a nurse practitioner. Taking into consideration the time and money it takes going through their schooling, we see that they are paid considerably more for their efforts.
|Occupation||Average Annual Salary|
|Nursing Instructor and Teacher, Postsecondary||$73,060|
|Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurse||$47,410|
Nurse Practitioner Pay in Virginia Compared to Other Healthcare Careers
Physician assistants and nurse practitioners in Virginia have a comparable salary, with not much difference between the two. At the bottom end of the spectrum, audiologists have an average salary of $89,620 per year.
Looking at the other end of the spectrum, dentists make $196,890 per year on average. As we see, nurse practitioners are just over the middle point range at $109,660 per year.
|Occupation||Average Annual Salary|
The Future for Nurse Practitioners in Virginia
Nurse practitioners have a bright future ahead of them. As people age, they require more healthcare due to a longer lifespan and advances in health care. Combined with the retirement or impending retirement of many nurse practitioners, there are many positions that need to be filled.
It was projected that from 2014 to 2024, the need for nurse practitioners in Virginia would grow by more than 43%.
During that time, more than 1,500 new nurse practitioner jobs were added throughout the state of Virginia. As a result of this supply and demand issue, nurse practitioners’ salaries are expected to increase in Virginia.
Frequently Answered Questions
How Many Nurse Practitioners are in Virginia?
There are about 5,790 nurse practitioners currently practicing in the state of Virginia.
How Does the Nurse Practitioner Salary in Virginia Compare with the Rest of the Country?
Nurse practitioners in Virginia make about $109,660 per year. The average salary for nurse practitioners in the United States is $114,510. As we can see, nurse practitioners in Virginia make, on average, $4,850 (or about 4%) less per year as compared to the rest of the United States.
Family Nurse Practitioners – How Much Do They Make in Virginia?
Family nurse practitioners in Virginia can expect to make a respectable salary. They will make an average of $108,370 per year. It breaks down to $9,030 per month or $52.10 per hour.
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners – How Much Do They Make in Virginia?
Psychiatric nurse practitioners can also expect to make a healthy salary. Supply and demand mean more money for psychiatric nurse practitioners in Virginia. They can earn an average of $114,130 each year. That breaks down to $9,510 per month or $54.87 per hour.
What are the Top Five Paid Nurse Practitioners in Virginia?
In Virginia, the highest-paid nurse practitioner is a neonatal nurse practitioner. A neonatal nurse practitioner in Virginia makes an average of $116,330 per year. Remember, the highest-paid positions are usually those working in hospitals and having to work some holidays, weekends, and nights.
Just take into consideration your own personal goals and weigh the pros and cons of the salary, where to work, the specialty that interests you, and what you hope to achieve.
|Rank||Nurse Practitioner Specialty||Yearly|
|1||Neonatal Nurse Practitioner||$116,330|
|2||Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner||$114,130|
|3||Pediatric Nurse Practitioner||$113,360|
|4||Adult Gerontology Nurse Practitioner||$110,480|
|5||Dermatology Nurse Practitioner||$108,960|
What are the Top Five Paying Cities in Virginia for Nurse Practitioners?
As we have seen, location can mean everything in terms of difference in pay. The cities in Virginia with the highest pay for nurse practitioners are Richmond, Roanoke, Virginia Beach, Lynchburg, and Harrisonburg.
Harrisonburg is the lowest of those five at (a still very nice) $87,340 per year on average. Richmond is the highest of those five cities with a yearly salary of $108,620.
|3||Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News||$103,710|
How Much Do Nurse Practitioners Make in Different Metros Within Virginia?
As we continue to look at location, knowing the range in salary for different metropolitan areas is another thing to keep in mind when looking at nurse practitioner salaries in Virginia.
Metropolitan areas include major cities and their suburbs, as well as nearby cities and towns. There are several metropolitan areas in Virginia.
|Metro||# of NPs||Hourly||Yearly|
|Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News||1,010||$49.86||$103,710|
As you can see in the following table, the annual salary varies, along with the number of nurse practitioners employed within that metro. For instance, the Harrisonburg nurse practitioners make an average of $87,340 each year and there are 80 employed.
The Richmond metro, on the other hand, employs an impressive number at 1,290. The nurse practitioners in that metro area make an average of $117,590.
Where Do the Majority of Nurse Practitioners in Virginia Work?
As with most jobs, and even within the nurse practitioner realm, positions are held in a variety of settings. Most nurse practitioners in Virginia work in physician offices, over 2,770. Half that number work in hospitals.
Over 500 nurse practitioners work in outpatient centers. You’ll find less than 400 total working in universities, colleges, and offices of other health professionals.
|Practice Setting Type||# of Nurse Practitioners|
|Colleges and Universities||190|
|Other Healthcare Provider Offices||170|
What Are the Annual Job Openings in Virginia for Nurse Practitioners?
There are roughly 150 new job openings, in addition to 300 replacement job openings. In total, nurse practitioners in Virginia can find nearly 450 annual job openings every year.
This number increases every year. This happens as the aging nurse practitioner population retires, along with healthcare advancements and an increasing lifespan.
How Is the Job Outlook for Nurse Practitioners in Virginia?
The job outlook for nurse practitioners in Virginia is very favorable. There is expected to be an over 30% increase in job opportunities for nurse practitioners from 2018 to 2028.
Who Gets Paid More? A Nurse Practitioner or a Registered Nurse?
First, you must be a registered nurse before you are able to become a nurse practitioner. Once you are a registered nurse, you must work for a number of years before applying to nurse practitioner programs.
Some may wonder if it is worthwhile to spend money on a nurse practitioner program when registered nurses make a decent wage. Time, money, and sacrifice can be worthwhile if there is a salary increase that is appealing.
A nurse practitioner’s salary increases significantly when they advance from being a registered nurse. Higher salaries are associated with advanced degrees.
There are several factors to consider when comparing nurse practitioners and registered nurses, but in general, nurse practitioners can make up to $50,000 more per year than registered nurses.
There is a multitude of factors to take into consideration when deciding where to work as a nurse practitioner. Many nurse practitioners are considering making Virginia their home to practice due to the state’s many attractive incentives.
Not only is the pay competitive with other states within the United States, the benefits and compensation are also very appealing. Virginia may be worth adding to your list of possibilities.
Written by Joanne Potter
Joanne, BSN and RN, is a writer that specializes in health and wellness. She has fifteen years of experience as a Registered Nurse in the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit). Her years working at the bedside and extensive neonatal knowledge enable her to write with a deep understanding of what patients and families want from their communities. Visit her LinkedIn page.
Sources (August 2022):
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
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