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High salaries make Arizona one of top 10 places in US for nurses

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PHOENIX — Nurses make a better living in Arizona than anywhere in the country, according to a personal-finance website.

Wallet Hub ranked Arizona the seventh-best state to be a nurse, helped greatly by the salary when adjusted for cost of living.

The Nurse Salary Guide listed the annual pay for a registered nurse in Arizona at $71,390. The national average was listed at $67,930.

Arizona jumped into the study’s top 10 with a score of 59.89. That pushed state nurses ahead of those in New Hampshire, Oregon and Colorado.

The study took into account 21 key metrics, including quality of nursing schools, nurses per 1,000 residents, job growth, mandatory overtime restrictions and commute time.

Source: WalletHub

The methodology graded each metric on a 100-point scale. The metrics were spread across two key dimensions: opportunity and competition, which was worth up to 70 points; work environment was worth up to 30 points.

The news wasn’t all good, though, for Arizona. The state was 47th for nursing job openings per capita and rated low for the number of health care facilities per capita at 48th.

Arizona State University’s school of nursing said the state would face a severe nursing shortage by 2025.

But the federal government projected a 15 percent job growth overall for the profession between 2016 and 2026, citing demand for health care for an aging population and retirement of health workers.

Maine was rated the best place to work as nurse with a score of 62.96.

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