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Salaries for MSN-Educated Nurses in Kentucky

The field of nursing is growing increasingly complex. Care in hospitals has become particularly demanding, since nurses have to make critical decisions and use more sophisticated technology to help save lives.

Advanced practice nurses with MSNs are particularly well trained to handle these challenges and are highly compensated for their skillset. The salaries for APRNs in Kentucky range from 47.6% to 248.7% higher than those for staff nurses according to the state’s Department of Labor.

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A number of nursing students in Kentucky are taking advantage of the opportunity to earn MSNs. There were 2,290 students enrolled in such programs in Kentucky according to a 2013 analysis performed by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing. Most of the students in APRN specific programs were planning on becoming nurse practitioners, while the remaining 28.9% were training for nurse anesthetist, nurse midwife, or clinical nurse specialist positions.

In 2013, Kentucky had 3,057 practicing APRNs according to the Kentucky Health Benefit Exchange. It reported that there were 69.5 of these professionals for every 100,000 citizens of the Commonwealth.

APRNs were in short supply in the rural counties of Boone, Henry, Pendleton, and Grant in 2012. Urban counties that were in particular need of APRNs included Breathitt, Magoffin, Morgan, Elliott, and Martin.

Kentucky Salaries for APRN and Staff Nurses

2013 wage information from the Kentucky Department of Labor demonstrates the high salaries that advanced practice nurses earn in the Commonwealth compared to those of staff nurses who typically have ADNs or BSNs:

MSN Career
Average Annual Salary
Average Annual Wage
Nurse Anesthetist
$144993
$69.71
Nurse Practitioner
$86069
$41.38
RN
$58295
$28.03

The Advance Healthcare Network provides additional evidence that demonstrates this difference in salaries revealed in their 2012 salary survey of the Mid-Atlantic and lower great lakes regions. It found that MSN-educated nurses earned an average of $44,723 a year more than staff nurses:

  • MSN – $94,250
  • Staff Nurse – $49,527

Nurse Practitioner Salaries in Key Regions of Kentucky

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics provides information on the salaries of nurse practitioners in key metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas of Kentucky (2013). These professionals were exceptionally well paid in the Clarksville area:

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Bowling Green KY
80
85580
Cincinnati-Middletown OH-KY-IN
1020
94790
Clarksville TN-KY
120
97140
Evansville IN-KY
240
79140
Huntington-Ashland WV-KY-OH
170
91560
Lexington-Fayette KY
250
92550
Louisville-Jefferson County KY-IN
650
92160
Owensboro KY
40
103410
West Kentucky nonmetropolitan area
260
91350
South Central Kentucky nonmetropolitan area
200
86940
West Central Kentucky nonmetropolitan area
130
80690
East Kentucky nonmetropolitan area
250
81080

Salaries for Nurse Anesthetists in Kentucky

Salary data for nurse anesthetists who worked in Kentucky is available from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (2013). It revealed that such professionals in the Huntington-Ashland metropolitan area has substantially higher salaries than those in the rest of the Commonwealth:

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Cincinnati-Middletown OH-KY-IN
370
138790
Huntington-Ashland WV-KY-OH
90
163810
Lexington-Fayette KY
Estimate not released
135540
Louisville-Jefferson County KY-IN
Estimate not released
133960
West Kentucky nonmetropolitan area
190
148150

*These figures represent hourly wages that are at least $90.00 per hour or annual salaries that are at least $187,199. These are the maximum salaries reported for Kentucky by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Nurse Midwife Salaries in Metropolitan Parts of Kentucky

According to information from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, nurse midwives who practiced in the Louisville-Jefferson County area earned the highest salaries of the metropolitan areas examined (2013):

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Cincinnati-Middletown OH-KY-IN
60
93450
Lexington-Fayette KY
50
80090
Louisville-Jefferson County KY-IN
Estimate not released
93670

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