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Hi, Avery; thanks for bringing up this topic. DNPs should receive the highest compensation due to their education and clinical training. A DNP is a terminal degree for advanced practice nurses. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) states that transitioning from advanced practice NP degrees to the doctoral level is a “…response to changes in healthcare delivery and emerging healthcare needs; additional knowledge or content areas have been identified by practicing nurses. In addition, the knowledge required to provide leadership in the discipline of nursing is so complex and rapidly changing that additional or doctoral level education is needed.” It implies that DNP graduates are leaders in advanced nursing practice who bring evidence-based knowledge into the clinical setting to help improve healthcare outcomes and strengthen the leadership role of nurses in both clinical and academic settings.
Appropriate compensation for DNPs is an important topic, and those who pursue higher education and have earned a terminal degree deserve higher salaries. If there is no significant difference in salary between APRNs with a Master’s or Doctorate, nurses would have no incentive to pursue a terminal degree in their specialty. According to Payscale, nurses with a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree earned an average base salary of $107K as of June 2022. Nurses with a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree, on the other hand, earned an average salary of $98k, $9k less per year than those with a DNP degree.
The DNP is still in its infancy, so the value viewed by society, medical facilities, and the nursing profession is limited and will continue to grow. The demand for equality of care and access to care will increase the demand for DNP practice, which will aid in increasing the DNP’s presence and, thus, the salaries and benefits of the DNP. Thanks for sharing.