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LPN Degree

LPN degree is one of the fastest ways to get into the field of nursing. LPN or licensed practical nurse, is also referred to as LVN or licensed vocational nurse in some areas. This degree is often offered through local community colleges or technical or vocational schools. The program generally takes one year to complete. 

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The duties of the licensed pratical nurse will vary depending on where you are employed. Practical nurses are becoming less and less common as more employers limit the amount of practical nurses they will hire and what they allow them to do.

In some organizations the licensed practical nurse can work as a staff nurse and requires an RN to oversee and cosign. In others the practical nurse may assist an RN with complex patients working as a team. In some facilities they can adminsiter IV meds and give injections if training is completed, while other facilities do not allow that. The biggest different is that a practical nurse cannot perform an assessment on a patient on their own. The RN must perform the assessment or sign an agreement to the practical nurse's assessment.

From personal experience I have worked with several nurses with LPN degrees who were more skilled than some of the RN's. Experience counts for a lot in my opinion.

Many licensed practical nurses are returning to school to obtain their RN degree, but entering the field as an practical nurse is also an option. For those of you with financial concerns, obtaining the shorter degree will allow you to work as you earn a higher degree is also an option. Many RN programs can be taking part time with some classes online making this a feasable option for some.



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