If you are currently practicing or considering a career as a certified nursing assistant, the location of your employer may make a big difference in your rate of pay. As the fastest growing health profession in the country, healthcare facilities in progressive states are providing salary incentives to persuade CNAs to join their workforce. If you are not satisfied with your income or need a change of environment, perhaps a fresh start in a new city can provide you with the answer.
The Top Five States with High CNA Pay and a Low Cost of Living
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in 2012, Alaska is the highest paying state for CNAs in the country. However, Alaska has an extremely high cost of living where $16.82 an hour may not provide the best income after paying for living expenses. The calculation of hourly wages, employment needs and the state’s cost of living are the best methods of configuring your best CNA salary.
According to Forbes Magazine, Nevada is the 18th best place to work and live. CNAs who work full-time, enjoy a median annual salary of $31,270. Although the cost of living is slightly higher than the national average, CNAs enjoy a higher than average salary that can provide a good income for their family. Over 15,000 CNAs are employed in Nevada.
2. The District of Columbia
Although more of a federal district that a state, the District of Columbia values their healthcare employees and offers CNAs an average hourly wage of $14.57. Despite a high cost of living, an average salary of $31,900 per year can calculate into affordable living expenses. In addition, the District of Columbia provides career growth and supports CNAs to further their nursing careers.
Voted the best place to live by Forbes Magazine, Washington compensates CNAs with an annual salary as high as $37,880 per year. With a cost of living at 2.5 percent above the national average, Washington CNAs make salaries that commensurate with their living expenditures. Washington employs almost 25,000 CNAs in hospitals and nursing homes.
With a low cost of living, over 20,000 CNAs in Colorado make an annual salary of almost $30,000 per year. Rated by Forbes Magazine as the 3rd best place to live and make a living, Colorado offers exclusive healthcare facilities and some of the most progressive hospitals in the country.
Listed by Forbes as the 4th best place to live, Texas has a low cost of living and a high concentration of jobs for CNAs. Texas boasts some of the best hospitals in the country and provides several options for CNAs in certified specialty areas and career growth. As reported by the BLS, Texas offers a median annual salary of $23,150 to their CNAs.
When calculating your best state of employment, consider the opportunities and options for CNAs in your targeted community. Many states, such as Texas and New Jersey, provide specialty areas that are eligible for certification and a higher salary. Ensure that you research employment demand in the area and configure your salary along with housing and other costs of living before making a sound and informed decision on relocating.