Are psychiatric nurses RNs or LPNs

Licensed Practical Nurse Job Description, Salary and Skills 2021 - Job Search

Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) perform a range of basic nursing duties. They work among doctors and nurses (RNs) in doctor's offices, hospitals, and health care facilities. You can also take care of home care. This is a growing preoccupation with a high number of job openings as the baby boomer generation ages.

Becoming a licensed practical nurse does not require the same level of schooling or training as a licensed nurse, but they play a key role in health care by assisting RNs and doctors in the care and treatment of their patients.

Licensed practical duties and nurse duties

LPNs typically need to be able to do the following:

  • Monitor patients
  • Make patients comfortable
  • Provide basic services
  • Listen to the patient
  • Report to RNs or doctors
  • Keep and maintain records

LPNs perform nursing tasks that are more complex than those performed by caregivers, but less complex than the duties of a registered nurse. LPNs monitor patients' health and look for signs that their health is deteriorating or improving. They check the vital signs and watch for changes in the monitor values.

Licensed Practical Nurses perform basic nursing functions such as changing dressings and dressings. They comfort the patient and ensure that basic needs such as food intake and hydration are in order. Licensed practical nurses may also administer medication in some settings, depending on institutional and government standards.

The care levels offered by LPNs, e.g. The provision of medicines, for example, varies from state to state. Hence, those who enter the field should check the state regulations they wish to work on.

Licensed Practical Nurse Salary

LPNs generally make less money than RNs, but their pay will be higher than that of caregivers.

  • Median annual salary: $ 45,030 ($ 21.65 / hour)
  • Top 10% annual salary: $ 61,030 ($ 29.34 / hour)
  • Lower 10% annual salary: $ 32,970 ($ 15.85 / hour)

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2017

Education, training and certification

Specific requirements for LPNs vary from state to state, but they must be licensed in all states. In general, LPNs are required to complete a certificate or diploma program, which typically lasts around one to two years.

  • Education: LPNs can complete certificate or diploma programs at colleges, technical schools, and some hospitals. Some high schools even offer programs.
  • Certification: LPNs must take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN). Some LPNs can also be certified for certain specialties such as IV therapy, nephrology or hospice care.

Licensed Practical Nurse Skills & Competencies

LPNs require different hard and soft skills. While the required LPN skills vary depending on the job, a range of skills are expected from most LPNs.

  • Compassion: The work comes from taking care of the patients, and often the patients are very sick, seriously injured, and may even die. Making it as comfortable as possible must be a priority.
  • Patience: Caring for the sick and injured can be stressful, especially because patients are sometimes in pain, feel uncomfortable, or otherwise unable to cooperate, which they might otherwise be able to do.
  • Endurance: The nurses stand on their feet throughout the day and sometimes have to help move patients or assist them with physical tasks such as dressing, bathing, or bathing.
  • Communication: LPNs need to communicate with patients about how they are doing, and also need to inform RNs and doctors of the general care required for each patient.
  • Detail oriented: LPNs track multiple patients' vital signs, nutritional needs, sometimes medication use, and more. Even small mistakes with some of these details can have serious consequences so the nurses need to be sure they are accurate.

Job outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment opportunities for licensed practical nurses are expected to increase 20% from 2016 to 2026, well above the 7% growth forecast for all occupations. The aging baby boomers require greater health care so LPNs with certifications or experience with the elderly will have the highest demand.

working environment

LPNs work in a variety of healthcare settings as part of a team that includes doctors, nurses, and others. They are used in facilities such as hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, clinics and private medical practices. Some also provide health services in people's homes. Nurses need to be able to stand on their feet for most of the day. You may also need to help lift or move patients.

work schedule

Some LPNs work part-time, but most work full-time. Nights, weekends, and holidays are an integral part of many nurses because of the need for 24/7 health care. Shifts sometimes last longer than eight hours, but can be part of a shorter work week.

How do I get the job?


Certificate and diploma programs are offered at community colleges and even in hospitals.


LPNs must be licensed in all states by passing the NCLEX-PN exam.


LPNs willing to serve areas in greatest need - such as care facilities - have the best chance of finding a job.

Compare similar jobs

Individuals interested in being a licensed practical nurse may also want to consider the following career paths, listed with median annual salaries:

  • State-certified nurse: $70,000
  • Psychiatric Technician or Assistant: $29,330
  • Occupational Therapy Assistant or Assistant: $56,690

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2017