How To Become an LPN Licensed Practical Nurse
School, Jobs, Salary, Training, Career
Easy, Step by Step, How To Do It
Congratulations on your interest in becoming an LPN, Licensed Practical Nurse. This work is an essential part of patient medical care, and offers you a well-paying career and stable employment. Looking after the needs of the sick, injured, disabled and convalescent patients is a very fulfilling occupation. Here's how to become an LPN.
The Requirements to Become a Licensed Practial Nurse
- A high school diploma
- A one-year LPN training program
- Internship with supervised work experience in a hospital
- Pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurse
What Does a LPN Do?
As a Licensed Practical Nurse, an LPN works under the direction of registered nurses and physicians, to provide hands-on patient care. You'll learn to record vital signs like temperature, blood pressure and pulse rate. You will be responsible for the patient's personal hygiene, bathing, massage, feeding and mobility. You may also give injections and enemas, monitor catheters, clean equpment, and change bandages. Experienced LPNs may supervise nursing assistants, aides, and other LPNs. Sometimes you will help deliver babies and care for newborns. You may be called upon to help with patient records of treatments and medications. Working with the families of patents and explaining health care can also be the job of an LPN. You can administer medicine, start IVs and care for patients on ventialtors. in California and Texas, the LPN is also called a LVN, Licensed Vocational Nurse.
Career Opportunities as an LPN
With the shortage of medical doctors, the LPN and the nurse are playing a larger role in patient care. Because demand for LPN's is strong and growing, you often have your choice of full-time jobs. LPN positions are available in hospitals, nursing homes, doctors' offices, and home health care. The annual salary of a LPN can reach $45,000 plus benefits, depending on your responsibilities. You can choose your work schedule, full or part-time, days, evenings or weekends. Some hospitals offer 10-hour work shifts with 3 days off each week.
Training to Become an LPN
You'll find training programs offered at local vocational schools, technical schools and community colleges. LPN training includes studies that can be done online or in a classroom, plus supervised work experience, usually in a hospital. Your studies cover the basics of medical care, nursing, obstetrics, pharmacology, nutrition and first aid. At the completion of your training, the final requirement for your LPN license is the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurse. When you choose a LPN training program, be sure that the school is accredited, and that their hospital training is in a convenient location.
The most important requirement for success as an LPN is dedication to your job. Do you have the compassion and patience, as well as the physical and emotional strength, to care for patients? As an LPN, you will play a critical and rewarding role in the lives of your patients.
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