Planning to become a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) and wondering what a LPN job description is? Well, for starters, LPNs are healthcare professionals who work under the supervision of the Registered Nurse (RN) and Physician. The usual educational program for a Licensed Practical Nurse takes 12 to 18 months which is a fast way to get a career in the medical field. Although you get to have a job in the medical field, LPNs have limited duties in the hospital as compared to RNs because the LPNs’ training is not as comprehensive, specific and intense as the RNs’. Though their duties vary at some point, LPNs are skillful and can advance into becoming a Registered Nurse in the future, if the person is interested in pursuing the career.
A LPN job description consists of tasks for patients who are stable and have predictable outcomes. The critical patients are assigned to a registered nurse because of the advanced and critical training and education in school. LPNs are provided with basic skills in nursing and required to learn the Anatomy and Physiology, Basic Nursing procedures, Emergency Care, Maternal-and-Child Nursing, Medical-Surgical Nursing, and Nutrition.
LPN job description includes doing certain procedures in the hospital setting. This includes taking vital signs for patients with predictable outcomes (blood pressure reading, pulse rate, respiratory rate and temperature); collect urine and stool specimen; monitoring height and weight of patient; procedures for stable patients such as colostomy care, nasogastric suctioning, pressure ulcer pressings (depends of the degree of damage) and tracheostomy care; giving medications via oral route, intramuscular (IM) route, subcutaneous (SQ) route, for IV or intravenous route, it depends on each state. Some allow IV certification for LPNs and some hospitals provide training for their LPNs. LPNs also monitor the patient’s food and fluid intake and output, observing the patient’s condition and reporting any changes to the nurse-on-duty and physician, assist the RN in some procedures, and most importantly give general health teachings to the patient and their significant others about their condition and providing care for patient hygiene. These are just some of the many LPN responsibilities.
The LPN job description includes the responsibility in the hospital that requires a lot of skill and knowledge. Training in LPN school and online LPN programs are important to maintain the ability in nursing skill for patients in the hospital. Though RNs have more responsibilities in the hospital, LPNs are as important as them. They are needed in the hospital because without LPNs, RNs would be overworked. The RN can delegate tasks to the LPN to minimize their workload which will result to a high-quality patient care.