Chief Nursing Officer Salary

A chief nursing officer has earned a master’s degree and has been a nurse manager for several years.

Chief nursing officers are sometimes called vice president of nursing or chief nurse executives. They are generally considered the highest nursing positions in a healthcare organization. Chief nursing officers may work under the supervision of the chief operating officer or the chief executive officer.

Chief nursing officers work in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes and large healthcare facilities. They must possess not only clinical expertise but also administrative and managerial skills.

Their day-to-day tasks and responsibilities may vary. Generally, they perform the following tasks:

  • Working as a liaison between the healthcare facility’s administrative team and the nursing staff in order to communicate changes in policy and regulations
  • Hiring and training nursing staff and coordinating further professional development for nursing and non-licensed staff
  • Adhering to and enforcing work standards, legal regulations and codes of ethics
  • Creating staff rotation schedules, monitoring job performances and evaluating nurses for promotions and disciplinary suggestions
  • Maintaining a deep knowledge and awareness of the needs and challenges in nursing

Career Growth

Healthcare is an ever-growing and developing industry with many opportunities for employment and growth. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that employment of medical and health services managers will grow 28 percent by 2032. This is a rate that is much faster than the average for all occupations. The rise in demand is partially due to the aging population of baby boomers and the increased use of technology and informatics in the healthcare system.

Salary Potential

The BLS reports that the average salary for medical and health services managers is $110,680. Average salaries for different practice settings include:

  • $128,740 for hospitals
  • $125,590 for government
  • $104,710 for outpatient care centers

Education Required

Many aspiring chief nursing officers start out by earning an RN to BSN online. After they have been practicing for a few years, they may choose to pursue a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN). Some nurses may choose to specialize further in nursing leadership-specific programs.

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