Monday, October 8, 2007

Everything You Need to Know About a Career as a Licensed Practical Nurse

Helping people is something that many people enjoy, and one way that you can do this is to start out in a career as a licensed practical nurse. This is a great idea for those who love the idea of being a nurse but who don't want to go through as much school as registered nurses have to go through. If you are considering being a licensed practical nurse, then you probably want to know a bit more about the occupation and what all is required. Some things you need to investigate include the education you will need, the types of jobs that are available in the field, the money you can make as a licensed practical nurse, and a few companies that are excellent to work for.

Education Needed
If you want to get involved in a career as a licensed practical nurse, then you are going to get some education before you get stared. First of all you are going to have to have a high school diploma or your GED in order to get entrance into a State approved program for licensed practical nurses. You will have to take this program and then once you have completed the program you will have to pass the state licensing examination in your particular state. If you pass the exam you will be able to begin working as a licensed practical nurse.

Usually the training to become a licensed practical nurse will only take you about a year. You will have classes with lectures; however, you will also get hands on training as well in your clinical part of the course. Some of the subjects you'll learn about in your classes include basic anatomy and physiology, obstetrics, pediatrics, administering drugs, nutrition, first aid, and psychiatric nursing. When you do your clinicals, you may spend time in a hospital, a nursing home, or even in a doctor's office as well.

Available Jobs
There are a variety of jobs that are open for licensed practical nurses. In fact, there are many open jobs for nurses that are not being filled, since there seems to be a shortage of nurses in the past few years. You can find great jobs in a hospital doing a variety of different work. Whether you enjoy working with children, in the emergency room, or even delivering babies, you are sure to find a great job in a hospital. There are also great jobs in homes for the elderly as well, whether in nursing homes or assisted living facilities. You can also find great jobs in home health care, working for the state or federal government, working in a doctors' office, or even working for educational facilities.

Let's Talk Money
When it comes to being a licensed practical nurse, the earnings are definitely not too shabby. Usually these nurses can expect to earn somewhere between $25,000 and $40,000 dollars each year, although some report earning even higher wages. Those who work in hospitals usually earn around $35,000 each year as do those who are employed in nursing homes and home health care. Usually nurses who are working in doctors' offices earn a bit less and average around $30,000 a year. If a licensed practical nurse goes on to get a bachelor's degree in nurses, he or she will have the potential to earn even more money as a nurse once that degree is completed and often their place of employment will help to pay for the educational expenses for that degree as well.

Great Companies to Consider
If you are looking for a job as a licensed practical nurse, there are a variety of options for you to consider. For those working in the United States, working for the federal government is a great idea and you will get great pay and excellent benefits while working there. Another great place to work in the United States is at Case Western University in Cleveland, Ohio. This is one of the top hospitals in the U.S. and you are sure to get great wages. Another excellent place to work in the U.S. is the Shands hospital located in Gainesville, Florida. There are also several great places to work in Canada. Some of the great companies to work for in Canada include Aspen Regional Health, and the Brenda Strafford Foundation.

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