The 5 Highest-Paid Nurse Practitioner Specializations

Last Updated/Verified: Nov 2, 2023

Nurse Practitioners (NPs) are highly trained healthcare professionals who are pivotal in delivering comprehensive patient care. With the growing demand for advanced practice nursing, NPs have the opportunity to specialize in various fields, and some of these specializations come with significantly higher earning potential. In this article, we’ll explore the top-paying NP specializations backed by the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

1. Home Health Nurse Practitioner

Home Health Nurse Practitioners provide primary care and healthcare services to patients in their homes. They often work with elderly or homebound individuals who require ongoing medical care and support. The earning potential for Home Health Nurse Practitioners can vary based on factors such as geographic location, years of experience, and the specific organization they work for. While salaries may vary, this specialization offers a very competitive salary — approximately $148,960 per year, according to the BLS.

2. Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioners (PMHNPs) specialize in mental health and psychiatric care, assessing, diagnosing, and treating individuals with mental health disorders. The demand for mental health services has been steadily increasing, which has led to competitive salaries for PMHNPs.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), psychiatric mental health nurse practitioners had a median annual wage of $134,540 as of May 2022. PMHNPs, particularly those in private practice or mental health clinics, often earn competitive salaries.

3. Emergency Nurse Practitioner

Emergency Nurse Practitioners (ENPs) work in emergency departments and provide rapid assessment and treatment to patients with acute injuries and illnesses. Their role involves handling critical and time-sensitive cases, which can lead to higher earning potential.

According to Glassdoor, emergency nurse practitioners make approximately $103,680 a year. Despite the high-intensity nature of the specialty, it is one of the most lucrative positions a nurse practitioner can be in.

4. Neonatal Nurse Practitioner

Neonatal Nurse Practitioners (NNPs) specialize in caring for newborns, particularly premature or critically ill infants in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs). They provide specialized care, including diagnosis, treatment, and monitoring of newborns with complex health conditions.

Neonatal Nurse Practitioners can expect to make approximately $100,509 per year, according to Glassdoor, making it one of the top-paying nurse practitioner career pathways you can enter.

5. Occupational Health Nurse Practitioner

Occupational Health Nurse Practitioners (OHNPs) focus on promoting and maintaining the health and well-being of employees in various workplace settings. They assess and manage workplace-related health issues, perform pre-employment screenings, and provide occupational health services.

The earning potential for OHNPs can vary depending on the industry and location of their practice. OHNPs working in industries with high occupational health needs, such as manufacturing or healthcare, may have competitive salaries. According to the BLS, occupational health nurse practitioners can make around $139,640 per year.

Judy Daniels, MSN, RN, AGPCNP-BC