Do you love nursing and working with children? If so, life as a Pediatric Nurse brings you the best of both worlds. A specialization in pediatrics allows you to work with children in hospitals, pediatricians’ clinics, medical centers, and other healthcare facilities.
Being a Pediatric Nurse can also open the door for you to further your career as a school nurse (RN).
Being a Pediatric Nurse means knowing how to speak kids’ language. They aren’t often capable of articulating what hurts, and they’re often likely to experience fear or anxiety when they’re in a healthcare setting.
Pediatric Nurses know how to put children’s minds at ease, bring them comfort, and speak to them like a friend. You help them feel better in every moment while figuring out exactly what’s going on and relaying important details to doctors.
Becoming a Pediatric Nurse requires several years of education, so much time, money, and effort is needed. If you’re interested in this career path, this guide will show how much you can expect to earn once you become a Pediatric Nurse.
Before exploring pay by state and salary details, let’s look at what Pediatric Nurses do and how their jobs vary by location.
Recommended Reading - What is a pediatric nurse in the USA?
A note about our data. We use the median of the data gathered from The BLS at data.bls.gov and other salary data sources such as Salary.com, Indeed.com and Zippia.com. We believe that this is the best average to follow, rather than the mean or mode. The mean will find the average of all salaries in each state; the mode will favor the most frequently reported salaries. However, the median will find the middle. All data in this report will favor the middle salary from all ranges, which means 50% will fall below and 50% will be above the salary data reported below. On another note, we have removed data from Puerto Rico, Guam, and The Virgin Islands from the data we have sourced as we have focused on the 50 US States plus The District Of Colombia.
Pediatric Nurse Job Description
Pediatric Nurses work exclusively with children. Ages can vary in pediatric settings, however. Some practices may see patients from when they are babies through college!
Being a Pediatric Nurse has similar responsibilities to being a traditional registered nurse (RN). However, because healthcare for children comes with its own unique needs and challenges, the techniques and approaches to nursing differ.
Most importantly, Pediatric Nurses must be incredibly empathetic, social, and supportive. They comfort children and parents, and they do their best to bring smiles to their patients’ faces, even during frightening or stressful medical procedures.
Some of the tasks you may perform as a Pediatric Nurse are:
Greet patients and their families with a smile.
Take children’s vitals, draw blood, and collect lab samples.
Conduct patient intakes, gathering medical history from parents or caretakers to enter a medical record system.
Asking questions to identify symptoms and prepare notes for the doctor.
Checking in with patients, monitoring symptoms, and tracking progress.
Administering shots and vaccinations.
Giving patients prescribed oral or intravenous (IV) medications.
Treating and comforting children in palliative care or hospice.
Answering parents’ or caregivers’ questions and offering emotional support.
Your exact responsibilities and the types of children you treat will vary by practice. For example, if you exclusively choose to work in a children’s hospital, you will regularly see patients with severe illnesses, some of whom have terminal diagnoses.
While a selfless job, that environment may not benefit every nurse. That is okay. You can look for less extreme positions in family health practices and doctor’s offices.
If you love working with kids in pediatrics, you can even look into school nursing.
What matters most is that you deliver your passion and enthusiasm for helping kids feel better no matter where you work. Therefore, it’s best to pick an environment that makes you feel your best.
Recommended Reading - How to Become a Pediatric Nurse in The USA?
Pediatric Nurse Salaries in the United States
Pediatric Nurse salaries range from $53,000 to over $100,000 in the United States. The lowest earners in the 10th percentile (10%) make $48,000 a year. This figure most likely reflects entry-level salary in some states for new RNs with little to no prior experience in pediatrics or nursing.
The top-earning Pediatric Nurses in the 90th percentile (top 10% of earners) make six figures with an average salary of $102,000. You may qualify for this salary after years of experience, through additional qualifications, and working in a state that pays Pediatric Nurses higher than the national average.
The latest data from Zippa reveals that the median annual salary for a full-time Pediatric Nurse is $70,000 a year, or $33.74 an hour.
How Much Does A Pediatric Nurse Make A Year?
The median annual salary for a Pediatric Nurse is $70,000 a year.
As of February 2022, our research shows that the national average salary for a full-time Pediatric Nurse is $69,473.96.
How Much Does A Pediatric Nurse Make An Hour?
According to our research, a typical Pediatric Nurse makes $33.40 an hour. Depending on their state, a Pediatric Nurse can earn between $29 to 40 an hour in the United States.
Pediatric Nurses Salary by State
Using the latest salary data from Zippa, we pulled all of the median Pediatric Nurse salaries and hourly wages by state to find a national average.
Our results show that the national average salary for a Pediatric Nurse is $69,473.96, or $33.40.
Hourly mean wage
Annual mean wage
Compared To National Average
District of Columbia
Factors That Affect How Much a Pediatric Nurse Makes
Nurse salaries vary by state, location, experience, and education.
Pediatric Nurses with less experience are more likely to be offered a lower base salary or an hourly wage. After one to three years of working, their salary should reflect the national average or the average in their state.
To increase your earning potential, you may consider earning a certificate in pediatric nursing. The most common certifications are the CPN (Certified Pediatric Nurse) and FNP-c or FNP-BC (Family Nurse Practitioner).
How Quickly Can You Become A Pediatric Nurse And Start Earning?
After earning an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree in nursing, you can earn your RN and start working with children in your state.
To work in pediatrics, you may need to hold additional certifications in CPR and BLS (Basic Life Support).
To earn a specialized certificate, such as a CNP or FNP, you will need to work for at least two years and complete further education.
Family nurse practitioners, those who choose to specialize in pediatrics, hold at least a master’s degree in nursing (MSN), an active RN license, and have at least 2,000 hours of relevant work experience.
When it comes to getting started, your base education will take between two to four years. Additional certifications can take another two to four years. However, with your RN, you can begin looking for jobs in pediatrics at local hospitals, family healthcare practices, schools, or clinics.
Recommended Reading - How to Become a Pediatric Nurse?
Career Path for Pediatric Nurse:
Earn your ADN or BSN from an accredited nursing school.
Pass the NCLEX and become a licensed nurse in your state.
Look for jobs in pediatrics wards or pediatricians’ centers.
If you desire, continue gaining experience and education to become a Certified Pediatric Nurse or Family Nurse Practitioner.
Pediatric Nurses vs. Other Nursing Professions
Below is a comparison of a Pediatric Nurse's salary beside similar professions in the field.
Average Pediatric Nurse salary: $69,473.96
Average RN Salary: $76,944.90
Average nurse practitioner salary: $116,358.04
Average labor and delivery nurse salary: $75,192.16
Average ICU nurse salary: $84,281.06
Average neonatal nurse salary: $71,267.04
Pediatric Nurse Salary FAQs
Am I Being Paid Fairly As A Pediatric Nurse?
The best way to determine fair pay as a Pediatric Nurse is to compare your pay to nurses in your area. If your salary falls far beneath what the average nurse in your practice or geographic region earns, you should speak with your employer.
While Pediatric Nurse salaries can range from 20% below to 37% above the national average of $33.40 per hour.
Are Pediatric Nurses Paid Mostly Hourly Or Annually?
Most floor nurses are paid hourly. If you get a full-time job in a doctor’s office or healthcare clinic, you may be offered a full-time salary if you work a typical day shift of eight to ten hours.
Do Pediatric Nurses Get Paid Overtime?
According to the latest information from Indeed, the average Pediatric Nurse receives $9,813 per year in overtime, according to the latest information from Indeed (May 2022). All nurses are legally entitled to overtime pay, their base hourly wage plus a half.
Do Pediatric Nurses Get Paid More Privately Or In Hospitals?
Pediatric Nurses work in hospitals, pediatrician’s offices, family practices, and healthcare clinics. They tend to earn the most working in public settings vs. private, but you may consider offering home healthcare if you wish to work one-on-one with children who have disabilities and special needs.
What State Pays Pediatric Nurses The Most Per Hour?
Connecticut pays Pediatric Nurses 46% higher than the national average at $48.83 per hour.
Other high-paying hourly wages for Pediatric Nurses in the U.S. are:
New York: $45.87 (37% above national average)
California: $45.55 (36% above national average)
District of Columbia: $40.78 (22% above national average)
Massachusetts: $40.57 (21% above national average)
Illinois: $39.85 (19% above national average)
Can You Live Off a Pediatric Nurses Salary in the USA?
The average annual salary for all professions in the U.S. is $58,260, according to the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (May 2021).
This amount places the typical Pediatric Nurse’s salary $11,213 higher than the national average. Finally, remember to factor in the cost of living in your state when considering how well this salary could support you.