Doctor of Nursing Practice Salary in Colorado

Stakeholders in Colorado value advanced practice registered nurses (ARPNs) for the critical role they play in providing high-quality health care in the state.

And their value is only increasing, particularly as Colorado continues to suffer from a lack of qualified providers. A report by the Colorado Center for Nursing Excellence, Colorado’s Future Healthcare Workforce and the Role of Advanced Practice Registered Nurses, revealed that Colorado will need 1,100 new physicians, APRNs, and physician assistants each year for the next decade.

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Nurse practitioners in Colorado do not face the onerous scope of practice laws that they do in many other states. Thus, they can practice independently of physicians and have the option to fulfill requirements to be able to prescribe medication. This situation enables Colorado’s nurse practitioners to play a critical and expanding role in providing primary healthcare in the state.

While ARPNs can obtain their license with a master’s degree, increasing numbers of these advanced nursing clinical practitioners are obtaining a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)—the highest level of practical training available to nurses.

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Obtaining a DNP offers an assurance of high salaries. A 2018 survey by the Advance Healthcare Network revealed that DNP-educated NPs earned an average of $7,683 more than NPs who had an MSN as their highest degree.

Statewide Salary Data for DNP-Educated APRNs and More in Colorado

DNP-educated nurses in various roles are consistently recognized for earning top salaries (Colorado Department of Labor & Employment, 2018):

  • Nurse Anesthetists – $198,060+
  • Nurse Administrators and Executives – $138,030-$181,790
  • Nurse Practitioners – $123,780-$146,820
  • Nurse Educators – $84,400-$104,510

Salaries for DNP Nurses in Colorado’s Major Cities

The Colorado Department of Labor & Employment provides salary information for DNP-educated advanced nursing professionals in the major cities of the state (2018):

Nurse Administrators and Executives:

  • Boulder – $154,870+
  • Colorado Springs – $123,970-$160,920
  • Fort Collins – $131,640-$158,220
  • Pueblo – $115,498

Nurse Practitioners:

  • Fort Collins – $119,220-$131,310
  • Pueblo – $120,780-$148,640

An Overview of Hourly Wages for DNP-Educated Nurses in Colorado

A 2019 Medscape Compensation Report found that 78% of APRNs are paid overtime for their work, revealing that many of these professionals are paid hourly.

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The Colorado Department of Labor & Employment provides salary information for DNP-educated registered nurses, as of 2018, as it provides a clearer picture of the earning power for these professionals:

  • Nursing Administrators and Executives: $66.36-$87.40
  • Nurse Anesthetists: $95.22+
  • Nurse-Midwives: $59.09-$63.41
  • Nurse Practitioners: $59.51-$70.59


Salary and employment data compiled by the Colorado Department of Labor & Employment in May of 2018 – ( Salary data represents state and MSA (Metropolitan Statistical Area) average and median earnings for the occupations listed and includes workers at all levels of education and experience. This data does not represent starting salaries. Employment conditions in your area may vary.

All salary and job growth data accessed in December 2019.

This page includes salaries that fall within the 75th and 90th percentiles for each nursing role to account for the fact that DNP-educated nurses are recognized as earning more than master’s-prepared nurses in the same roles.

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