Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)

Are you considering becoming a Licensed Practical Nurse?  Continue reading to learn more about this fulfilling career in nursing!  

What does it really take to become a skilled and competent Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)?

LPNs provide basic, direct care to patients, under the supervision of a registered nurse (RN) or physician. They give treatments, take vital signs, administer medications, and more. To become an LPN you must have an aptitude for science and math, with interpersonal skills to effectively care for and communicate with patients and their families.  Crucial skills include stamina and the ability to adapt to stress.

Education

studying

To become an LPN, you must attend a licensed practical nursing program, which generally takes 12-18 months. Coursework includes anatomy and physiology, pharmacology and math. Admission into an LPN program is often competitive.

Graduates from an LPN program are eligible to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN), which you must pass for licensure as an LPN.

Work Environment

LPNs play a critical role in the healthcare industry, providing care and support in a variety of settings. These skilled professionals can be found working in hospitals, long-term and rehabilitation care facilities, physicians’ offices, clinics, schools, and even in patients’ homes. With their extensive training and expertise, LPNs are able to provide compassionate care to patients of all ages, helping to promote healing and improve overall health outcomes.

Career Advancement

LPNs may pursue specialty certification, enhancing skills and knowledge. Specialty certification signifies personal and professional growth and may lead to increased career opportunities.

Often, LPNs return to school to become a registered nurse. LPN to RN transition or bridge programs give credit for previously earned coursework, where applicable. Many programs offer flexible scheduling and online options that accommodate busy personal and professional lives.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for licensed practical & vocational nurses (LPNs) is projected to grow faster than supply between 2021 and 2036, resulting in a projected shortage (99,070 LPN FTEs) in 2036. The demand for LPN workforce is expected to grow by 6% over the next decade.