What is an LPN?
If you are considering going into the field of nursing, there are a lot of different options that you could choose. There are a variety of different paths, programs, and ways to become a nurse, and one of those is the path of LPN.
What does LPN stand for? What exactly is an LPN? Well, LPN stands for “Licensed Practical Nurse” and it’s one of the more popular paths to nursing in the U.S. Of the approximately four million professionally active nurses in the U.S., about one million of them are LPNs. In terms of nursing hierarchy, an LPN is more advanced and trained than a CNA (a Certified Nursing Assistant), but less advanced and trained than a RN (Registered Nurse).
In terms of the complexity of training (although this depends upon the state where a person lives and the school they attend), LPN training may be more complex than CNA training, but less complex then actual RN training. LPN training generally occurs at community colleges or similar places, although it may be offered at other schools too.
As far as LPN job duties and tasks go, LPNs have a wide range tasks that they may need to perform, as they are still nurses and licensed by the Board of Nursing or whichever governing agency deals with nursing certification and licenses in the state where they live. LPNs may perform a variety of patient care tasks from recording patient data like body temperature, height, weight, etc. to more complex things such as administering medications (although not all states may allow LPNs to do this) and helping patients with wound care and first aid. LPNs are an important member of any medical team, and they’re definitely a big help to patients as well. If an LPN works in doctor’s office (which some do), they may eventually get to know their patients well and establish a relationship with them similar to how doctors establish relationships with their patients, although obviously on a less technical level. This may also occur (and possibly more frequently) if an LPN is working in a nursing home or assisted living facility where they see the same residents on a daily basis and work with them consistently. Hopefully now after reading the information on this page, you have a better idea of what an LPN is and what types of things they do when working with patients, and hopefully you understand the field in general a bit better.