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Best-Paying BSN Nursing Jobs and Careers

Daniel Bal, MS.Ed
Updated January 10, 2023
Review the top five highest-paid BSN nursing jobs and the basic responsibilities of each position.
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An Asian-American female nurse wearing scrubs and a stethoscope poses next to a window in a hospital corridor and smiles at the camera.Credit: Fly View Productions / E+ / Getty Images

Nursing professionals can hold a variety of different degrees and titles, with registered nurses (RN) being the most popular career option. Earning a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) is one of the best ways to become an RN.

While an associate degree may meet RN qualifications in most states, earning a BSN can bring higher pay and more job opportunities. In fact, 82.1% of nursing employers expressed a preference for BSN graduates in 2019. Others seek those with a graduate degree.

Those with a BSN can work in many nursing specializations. However, general duties for BSN graduates include:

Taking the time to specialize in a particular area could lead to greater job responsibilities and a larger salary. The latter portion of a degree generally focuses on the specialization, where additional clinical training takes place.

Of the nursing employment options available with a BSN, several stand out due to their nursing pay, benefits, and personal rewards. Here are the five best options for those looking for higher-paying BSN nursing jobs and careers.

1. Pharmaceutical Nurse

BSN nurses can pursue a career within the pharmaceutical industry as a sales representative, technical writer, or educator. As a sales representative, nurses use their medical background to understand and promote various pharmaceuticals.

Nurses who become technical writers prepare and present information regarding new medications, while educators offer insight into how new medications or therapies work within the healthcare industry.

  • Percentage of BSN Workforce:0.06%
  • BLS Job Outlook 2020-2030*:9%
  • Average Salary:$93,000 (Payscale/August 2022)

2. Informatics Nurse

Informatics nurses develop and support the use of technology to help healthcare progress into the digital age. Their role includes helping healthcare organizations implement new technology while building relationships between medical and information technology staff.

Informatics nurses incorporate their medical knowledge to enhance the use of technological systems to benefit patient care. With the increasing use of technology in healthcare settings, there has been greater demand for informatics nurses.

  • Percentage of BSN Workforce:0.9% (as of 2020)
  • BLS Job Outlook 2020-2030*:9%
  • Average Salary:$79,270 (Payscale/August 2022)

3. Travel Nurse

Travel nurses work on a temporary basis at varying locations, with jobs lasting anywhere from a single day to several months, depending upon the facility and position. Their primary responsibilities include administering medication, monitoring patients by checking vital signs, and working with the various health professionals assigned to their patients.

Travel nurses need exceptional communication skills, good bedside manners, and the ability to adapt to new settings.

  • Percentage of BSN Workforce:1.5-2.0% (as of 2017)
  • BLS Job Outlook 2020-2030*:9%
  • Average Salary:$80,970 (Payscale/August 2022)

4. Legal Nurse Consultant

Legal nurse consultants typically work for healthcare facilities, law firms, government agencies, and insurance companies, providing various legal services. Drawing from their experiences and perspective as a nurse, legal nurse consultants excel in health-related litigation. They provide legal services within the following areas: medical malpractice, personal injury, risk management, civil rights, and employment discrimination.

Their responsibilities include interviewing clients, analyzing medical records, providing expert testimony, preparing evidence, and assisting with depositions. Those who are successful in the position typically have a strong knowledge of the law, along with medical experience.

  • Percentage of BSN Workforce:1.8% (as of 2020)
  • BLS Job Outlook 2020-2030*:9%
  • Average Salary:$82,040
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5. Perioperative (Operating Room) Nurse

Perioperative nurses, also known as operating room nurses, care for patients before, during, and after surgeries and other medical procedures. Nurses can focus on three general areas as an operating room nurse: pre-operative, intraoperative, or postoperative.

Pre-operative nurses assess the patient’s condition and prepare the operating room. Intraoperative nurses evaluate vital signs and assist the surgical staff throughout the course of the procedure. Postoperative nurses evaluate patients and communicate with the surgical team, physicians, and family members.

  • Percentage of BSN Workforce:6.7%(as of 2020)
  • BLS Job Outlook 2020-2030*:9%
  • Average Salary:$76,570 (Payscale/August 2022)

*Note: The Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS) does not track individual specialties; therefore, job outlook figures are based upon the expected growth of registered nurses.

Featured Image: Fly View Productions / E+ / Getty Images

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