Patients now have even more access to high-quality health services provided by nurse practitioners (NPs).  As of December 2019, more than 290,000 NPs were licensed to practice in the United States, a large increase from the estimated 270,000 NPs practicing in January 2019, according to the results of the 2019 National NP Sample Survey

This increase may be the result of the demand for healthcare providers to manage the growing number of elderly patients living in rural and urban areas. “An estimated 1.06 billion patient visits were made to NPs in 2018, improving the health of our nation and increasing the growing number of patients who say, ‘We Choose NPs,’” said Sophia Thomas, DNP, APRN, FNP-BC, PPCNPBC, FNAP, FAANP, and president of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP).

The National NP Sample Survey also found an increase in median base salaries of NPs in 2019. Many factors contribute to NP compensation, including type of certification, additional administrative duties, years of practice experience, and level of education. In 2019, 4 of the top 5 certifications reported were in primary care: family (65.4%), adult (12.6%), adult-gerontology (7.8%), and pediatrics (3.7%). For full-time NPs, the median base salary was $110,000; the median total income — including bonuses — for full-time NPs was $115,000. NPs who worked full-time and had certifications in psychiatric mental health had the highest median base salary ($125,000), while emergency NPs had the highest median hourly rate ($70.00).

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NPs who held an administrative role in addition to their clinical responsibilities reported a higher median base salary ($120,000), whereas clinicians who only held a clinical position made a median base salary of $108,000. Approximately 1 in 7 NPs reported their administrative role as “executive level” (ie, CEO, CNO, or owner) but the majority reported a “professional-level” role such as a director or manager.

A sampling of more than 156,000 records was pulled from the AANP National NP Database, which includes contact information for members, customers, and state regulatory agencies. A total of 5770 NPs responded to the survey; results were only recorded if they were from NP respondents who were clinically practicing at the time of participation.


More than 290,000 Nurse Practitioners Licensed in the United States. American Association of Nurse Practitioners News Center. March 3, 2020. Accessed March 6, 2020.