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If you’ve got a compassionate demeanor and a good tolerance for stress, a job as an LPN could be right for you

licensed practical nurse

Education Requirements:

Unlike other nursing jobs, an LPN does not need a bachelor's degree or higher to practice. However, formal training is still required. While in high school, it is a good idea to take science, math and English courses. Some high schools offer nurse assistance training programs.

To become an LPN, you must complete a state-approved program at a two-year technical college or other approved private training school. You will need a high school diploma to enroll. LPN training programs usually take about a year and include both classroom study and supervised clinical practice. Classes cover subjects like: anatomy, physiology, nutrition, pediatrics, medical-surgical nursing and first aid.

Next, you must pass a licensing exam before you can practice. The National Council Licensure Exam for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN) is a written test.

Job Tasks:

  • Provide medical treatment to patients, such as bandaging wounds or giving medications

  • Measure and record patients’ vital signs, such as height, weight, temperature, blood pressures, pulse or respiration

  • Assemble and use tracheotomy tubes, catheters, and other equipment

  • Work as part of a healthcare team to assess patient needs, plan and modify care and implement interventions

  • Monitor patients’ conditions and report any changes

  • Collect samples and perform routine lab tests

  • Record food and fluid intake and output

  • Supervise nursing assistants and aides

  • Answer patient calls and determine how to assist them

  • Help patients bathe, dress, eat, or walk

Skills and Abilities Needed to Perform Job:

  • Medicine – Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities.

  • Customer and Personal Service – Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services.

  • Psychology – Knowledge of human behavior and performance, individual differences in ability, personality, and interests.

  • Therapy and Counseling – Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions and for career counseling and guidance.

  • Knowledge and use of medical software (Epic, MEDITECH, PointClickCare, Telephone triage.

  • Knowledge and use of Microsoft software programs (Power Point, Excel, Word and Office).

  • Knowledge and use of Diagnostic and procedural coding software

  • Oral Comprehension – Ability to listen to and understand information presented through spoken words.

  • Oral Expression – Ability to communicate information in speaking so that others will understand.

  • Written Comprehension – Ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.

  • Problem Sensitivity –Ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong.

  • Speech Clarity – Ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.

  • Speech Recognition – Ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.

  • Information Ordering – Ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules.

Desired Work Style Attributes:

  • Attention to details

  • Dependability – Reliable and responsible

  • Integrity – Honest and ethical

  • Self-Control – Maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check

  • Stress Tolerance – Accepting criticism and dealing calmly in stressful situations

  • Concern for Others – Sensitive to needs of others

  • Cooperation – Pleasant with others

  • Adaptability/Flexibility – Open to Change (positive or negative)

  • Initiative – Willingness to assume responsibilities and challenges

  • Social Orientation – Preferring to work with others rather than alone

  • Analytical Thinking – Analyzing a variety of information to solve problems

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