How Much Do Cardiac Nurses Make?

Cardiac Nurses focus on cardiovascular health. They work with cardiologists and help with surgery. This guide uses the latest data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and other sources to provide information on average salaries, as well as factors that influence compensation, including certification and educational level.

We have also broken down the numbers by gender and location in order to compare the pay of cardiac nurses with that of other nursing specialties.

Quick Facts about Cardiac Nurses

  • Registered nurses earn an average salary of $77,600 per year.
  • Certifications can increase the salary and employment prospects of cardiac nurses.
  • To increase their compensation, many cardiac registered nurses take on advanced practice roles.

Source: Journal of Nursing Regulation

Average Salary of Cardiac Nursing Staff

Cardiac nursing requires RN licenses. They must also have at least an associate degree. According to BLS statistics, registered nurses earned a median salary of $76,600 per year in 2021. The following data shows that cardiac nurses’ salaries increase with increased education.

Medscape’s 2020 survey of salaries of nurses shows that the largest jump at 14% occurs between Bachelor of Science Nursing (BSN) level and Master of Science Nursing (MSN).


Bachelor of Science in Nursing


Doctor of Nursing Practice

Source: MedScape

Online MSN programs featured

Cardiac nurse Salary Disparities by gender

Only 9.4% male nurses make up the total number RNs. However, they earn more than their female counterparts across nearly half of specialties. A survey by the Journal of Nursing Regulation revealed that male cardiac nurse earns close to $15,000 per year more than female cardiac nurses.

The highest-paying and lowest-paying states for cardiac nurses in 2020

The BLS does provide state-specific salary data for cardiac nurses. However, RN pay trends are comparable based on geographical location. Cardiac nurses are RNs with a specialty in cardiac nursing. In most states, they earn the same wages as RNs.

The BLS states that the two states where registered nurses earn the most are California and Hawaii. Puerto Rico has a registered nurse average salary of $35,690 per year as of 2021. RNs from Alabama, South Dakota and Mississippi make less than $68,000.

The 10 most expensive metropolitan areas are all located in California, the top state in the nation. San Jose-Sunnyvale is the highest paying city, with RNs earning around $155,230.

What are the salaries of Cardiac nurses compared to other nurses?

Below is a chart that shows the average salaries for other popular nursing specialties. Cardiac nursing can expect to earn an average of $70,000 — similar to hospice nurses. Education and certification also affect compensation rates.

Learn more about the salaries of nurses in 2020

How to increase your pay as a cardiac nurse

The median RN salary is $120,250 per year for the top 10%, while the bottom 10% earns a median of $59,450. Average salary rates and ranges are correlated with nursing experience and certification. This section will explore the factors that influence salaries and how cardiac nurses can maximize their earning capacity.

1. Consider Certification
Organizations like the American Nurses Credentialing Center offer a certification in cardiac vascular nursingand Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association offers a certificate in cardiovascular nursing. The certification signifies increased professional knowledge and competency and can lead to a career advancement or higher salaries.
2. Increase your Education Level
Cardiac Nurses earn credentials that allow them to obtain RN licenses. A diploma may take as little as a year, but a degree can take at least two. A higher degree can result in a higher salary, so it may be worth spending two or three years to earn a BSN.
3. Get Experience in Administrative Roles
Work experience can lead to higher salaries for cardiac nurses and greater responsibility as educators and managers. According to the 2020 Workforce Survey, RNs who have 6-10 years’ experience earn up to $18,000 extra than those in their first year.
4. Learn how to become an advanced practice registered nurse
A MSN degree and the ability to practice as an advanced practitioner registered nurse (APRN), can lead to an average salary of over $100,000 per year. Many cardiac nurses find that the extra training of 2-3 years is worth it because they can earn an average salary of more than $100,000. The MSN opens up the possibility of administrative and leadership positions with higher salaries.

Salary of Cardiac Nurses: Frequently Asked Question

How much does a cardiovascular RN make?

2020 workforce study reports that the median RN salary is $70,000. Medscape Survey lists $77,000 as a base pay rate. BLS reports a median pay of $77.600 per year for RNs. This includes cardiac nurses.

What is the role of a cardiovascular nurse?

Cardiologists and cardiac nurses work together to treat heart problems, including heart failure, heart attacks and cardiac arrest. Assessing patients, they use treatments such as defibrillation and catheterization. Cardiac nursing may also help with heart surgery.

Do nurses make six figures?

Cardiac nursing professionals with advanced degrees and those who live in California or Hawaii can earn over $100,000. Nurse educators, administrators and managers, as well as APRNs, often earn six-figure salary. In cities such as San Francisco, San Jose Sacramento and Los Angeles, RNs earn an average of well over $100,000.

What is the minimum level of education required to become a cardiovascular nurse

Cardiac nursing is a specialty of Registered Nurses (RNs) who are eligible for licensure after obtaining a nursing degree, an associate degree in Nursing (ADN), BSN. ADNs and nursing diplomas are usually required for entry-level positions in the nursing field, while BSNs and MSNs lead to more advanced positions.

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