An airline nurse provides care for patients during every phase of air transportation. While salaries for the position vary based on many factors, including years of experience and level of education, the average salary for airline nurses across the United States is $82,207 according to Salary.com.
Across the country, airline nurses typically have salaries that range between $73,000 and $92,000. However, it is often found that airline nurses or associated medical transport professionals are paid on a per diem basis vs. a salary.
What An Airline Nurse Does
In many ways, the job of an airline nurse mirrors that of an emergency room nurse.
Nurses who work in an ER must manage diverse types of patients suffering from a wide variety of illness and injuries. They are trained to make fast, smart decisions in an often-frenetic environment.
Many airline nurses have years of experience working in an emergency room. The skills gained there help them better perform their job as an airline nurse.
An airline nurse has many responsibilities. They assess a patient’s condition before traveling. Then, they develop a transport plan to get the patient to their destination safely. They also work with airline personnel to make the trip through the airport as easy as possible. They may also coordinate ground transportation on both ends of the trip.
Most importantly, they are specially trained to provide quality care to patients during the flight. They have expertise in the details of providing medical care while thousands of feet in the air.
An airline nurse can work in emergency situations. However, many also work with patients who are ill or have had injuries but must still take a flight. Others also work with older or chronically ill patients who require professional medical care while taking a flight.
Salary Differences By Region
Location is a key component of salary in all professions. The online salary aggregator site Salary.com allows you to look at places where some of the highest salaries are available for an airline nurse. As with most professions, the highest salaries are in California and the Northeast.
Some of the highest salaries are in counties that include the following cities:
- San Francisco ($100,525)
- San Jose ($99,735)
- New York City ($99,471)
- Boston ($93,911)
- Los Angeles ($92,411)
Others area where salaries are above average include Chicago, Denver, Houston, Las Vegas, Seattle, and Miami.
Many factors other than location play a role in salary. They include years of experience in both emergency rooms and as an airline nurse, Also, the level of college degree attained and certifications earned play a role. Higher salaries also are typically given for positions in management.
Growth in the field continues as more people become aware of the benefits of medical transport service. For nurses, it offers an exciting opportunity outside the typical environments of a hospital, physician’s office or long-term care home.