There are many opportunities waiting in the nursing industry. Two of the most popular nursing positions are the Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) and Registered Nurse (RN). Both of these individuals are valuable assets to the nursing industry, but they both have different job responsibilities and offer different levels of knowledge and skills to the nursing industry.
LPN Vs RN Educational Requirements
Students must hold a GED or high school diploma before entering an LPN program. LPNs attend school for approximately 1 year. Some students may be able to complete these programs in less than one year. Students can choose between technical schools, junior colleges, and vocational schools.
The curriculum in the LPN programs teaches students to learn how to apply their knowledge and skills to various medical settings. The program courses may consist of nutrition, CPR, medical calculation, anatomy and physiology, and medical surgical nursing.
Upon completing an LPN program, students must sit for the certification exam. After passing the NCLEX-PN, students may practice as Licensed Practical Nurses.
Students may attend school for 2 to 4 years to become Registered Nurses. Some students choose to attend a junior or technical college to earn their associates degree in nursing, while others attend school for 3-4 years to earn the bachelors degree in nursing. Both degrees allow nurses to work as Registered Nurses.
The curriculum in the RN programs provides students with an in depth understanding of nursing that that will need to work in medical facilities. The program courses may consist of mental health nursing, health promotion, nursing pharmacology, maternity nursing, nursing management, and medical surgical nursing.
Upon completing an RN program, students must successfully pass the NCLEX-RN to become Registered Nurses.
LPN Vs RN Job Skills
LPNs provide less skilled care to patients. They work under the direct supervision of doctors and Registered Nurses. Their nursing skills allow them to provide basic bedside care to each of their patients.
LPNs are also responsible for dressing, feeding, moving, comforting, and bathing their patients. Their skill set does not allow them to work independently so they must always work under RNs and doctors.
RNs perform highly skilled activities for their patients. They are responsible for educating each patient regarding their medical conditions and treating the patients as well. They also must be skilled in providing emotional support to patient’s and the family members. RNs also assist patients’ family members with tips to caring for their sick loved ones.
At times, RNs may have to operate heavy medical machinery. They are also responsible for analyzing test results, performing diagnostic tests, observing patient conditions, administering treatments and therapies, administering medications, recording patient conditions, and maintaining intravenous lines.
RNs also consult with clinicians and doctors in regards to patients. RNs also supervise Nursing Aides and Licensed Practical Nurses. Some RNs specialized in a number of areas so that they can provide specialized care to patients in a variety of medical facilities.
LPN Vs RN Salary
LPNs earn an annual salary of $40,900. The median salary for LPNs is $39,820. The top 10% of LPNs earn $55,090 annually, while the bottom 10% earns $28,890 annually. The best annual salaries for LPNs are in Rhode Island ($50,010), Connecticut ($52,300), and New Jersey ($50,350).
The vast majority of LPNs work in nursing care facilities, earning average annual salaries of $42,320. LPNs working in medical and surgical hospitals earn average annual wages of $39,980. LPNs working in offices of doctors earn average annual wages of $36,770. LPNs providing home health care services earn average annual wages of $42,300.
RNs earn average annual salaries of $66,530 annually. The median annual wages are $63,750. The top 10% of RNs earn annual wages of $93,700, while the bottom 10% earned $43,970. The best annual salaries for RNs are in California ($85,080), Hawaii ($80,020), and Massachusetts ($81,780).
RNs working in surgical and medical hospitals earn annual wages of $67,740. Those providing home health care services earned annual wages of $63,300. RNs working in nursing care facilities earned average wages of $59,320 annually. RNs working in offices of doctors earned wages of $67,290 annually.
Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) and Registered Nurses (RNs) provide different level of care to patients in need. Both individuals have the potential to make very lucrative salaries over the span of their careers. Many nursing professionals use the LPN certification as a steppingstone to become Registered Nurses later. Both professionals offer job security and a great deal of potential.