By MyBaseGuide Staff Member
Being a military nurse is a tough but rewarding career, especially when you consider that the average military nurse salary is $70,000 annually. That’s not a bad payday! But if you want the cash, you have to put in the hard work to get it. Read on to learn more about what it takes to be a military nurse and what you’ll have to do to be able to hit that attractive military nurse salary.  More military salary data: A Complete Guide to Military Police Salary & Requirements

An Overview of a Military Nurse Salary

Most military nurse salary data falls between $58,000 and $100,000 per year, with the bulk of military nurses making around $70,000 annually. But where does this data come from? Well, military pay isn’t based on job description. It’s based on years of service and rank (a.k.a. enlistee, officer, etc.). The higher your rank and time in the military, the more you’ll get out of your military nurse salary and benefits. This also means different subclasses of military nurses won’t receive different pay. So a military registered nurse salary won’t be different from a military CRNA salary (unless, of course, the RN and CRNA are in different ranks with differing time in the service).  With an average salary of around $70,000, that means the monthly pay is about $5,800. That would put the majority of military nurses somewhere between the ranks of O-1 to O-4, since military nurses all enter the Armed Forces as commissioned officers and not enlistees.  In addition to your base military nurse salary, the Army Nurse Corps offers nurses opportunities for continuing education, accession bonuses of $20,000 to $30,000, and other incentive special pay

What Are the Requirements To Be a Nurse in the Military?

You must meet the basic active duty military requirements to join the Armed Forces as a military nurse. Because military nurses will enter the military as commissioned officers, there are also detailed military nurse educational requirements outlined below. 
  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.
  • Must be between 21 to 42 years old.
  • Must have at least a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from an accredited school.
  • Must have a valid, unrestricted, and up-to-date license to practice as an RN. 
  • Must meet the military’s moral and physical standards.
As far as military nursing physical requirements go, you will have to pass a specialized boot camp for commissioned officers for the branch you’re going into. This is not the same as the common Basic Training but is tailored to non-combat COs. 

Military Nurse Job Description

Military life is about more than just explosive wartime tragedies, movie-esque injuries, and dramatism. While those can be a part of the job description in times of conflict, military nurses are needed every day for a range of duties, from the mundane to the emergent.  What does this mean? Job security! Nurses are always in demand, as this coronavirus pandemic has proven time and again. The Army Nurse Corps explains the position and overarching duties of a military nurse: “You will be in a leadership position and enjoy the privileges, pay, respect and authority of a commissioned officer in the Army. As an officer and a leader, you will lead by example in meeting the Army’s high professional standards and be given a great deal of responsibility, beginning with your first assignment. You’ll supervise a variety of professional and paraprofessional nursing care providers at Army health care facilities, making decisions about day-to-day patient care and ensuring that your decisions are carried out in an effective and efficient manner.” There are a ton of military nursing positions, like
  • Emergency nursing
  • Public health nursing
  • Perioperative nursing
  • Critical care nursing
  • Obstetrics & gynecological nursing
  • Anesthesia nursing 
Given you put in the time and effort, any one of these rewarding positions can get you the military nurse salary you dream of.  Suggested read: How the Military Pay Raise 2022 Affects Your Salary



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