LVN stands for licensed vocational nurse, and the salary of these health care professionals depends a lot on their education, experience, location as well as their overall set of skills. The average yearly salary for a licensed vocational nurse in the United States of America is of around $47,000, although this depends on whether they work in nursing homes, hospitals or any other type of individual institution.
Pay Scale In Different Parts Of The United States
The salary of the licensed vocational nurse varies a lot from one state to another. The state of Connecticut is known to offer the highest yearly salary for these health care professionals, as LVNs who work here earn around $60,000 a year. On the other hand, the states of Washington DC, New Jersey, California as well as Massachusetts also offer them some very rewarding salaries, between $57,000 and $58,000 a year, both of which are above the national average.
Licensed Vocational Nurse Job Description
Just like any other nurse, the licensed vocational nurse is trained to handle blood samples and to work in various health care and medical facilities where they provide patients with basic medical care. The LVNs typically work under the close supervision of a doctor, a physician or a registered nurse, and they deal with a wide array of medical duties and requirements.
In a nutshell, the basic medical duties of these professionals include taking the vital signs of the patient, changing their dressings and bandages, monitoring and recording their medical status and symptoms, as well as helping doctors and physicians administer different therapies and treatments. It is very important that a good licensed vocational nurse possesses impeccable communication skills, as they will need to work closely with doctors and nurses in order to provide patients with the best medical treatment they can get.
In addition to the formal training, it is important that LVNs possess good stamina, given the fact that they will have to spend a lot of time on their feet. Moreover, the licensed vocational nurses must also be very compassionate and show empaty towards their patients, who may be confused or in pain. It is also very important that these health care professionals possess a great attention to details, in order to provide accurate and efficient treatments. Good interpersonal skills are also required, as they must be friendly and personable with their patience, while patience is very important for helping patients understand their medical treatment, especially since most of them are frightened or in pain.
How To Become A Licensed Vocational Nurse
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Commonly referred to as a LPN or a licensed practical nurse, the licensed vocational nurse is a professional that can gain this title without too much of a hassle. In other words, it is far easier to become a LVN than to become another medical professional, as it requires less education as opposed to registered nurses or even advanced practice nurses. Even so, licensed vocational nurses still need to have a very good insight into human anatomy, medical terminology and a variety of other essential medical aspects.
In addition to the duties and requirements mentioned above, it is also the duty of the LPN or the LVN to feed and bathe the patient, to monitor their vital signs, to collect different blood, urine and stool samples that will be sent to the laboratory for testing, to give them injections and administer the treatment, to manage the medical equipment as well as to dress the wounds following a surgery. It is also important for the LVN to collect information about the patient and their medical history.
Simply put, becoming a licensed vocational nurse required either a high school diploma or a GED, which is basically an equivalent of the high school diploma. Once you get the diploma, you can enroll in a one-year training and education program at your local vocational or community school, where you will get both theoretical and practical experience.
After you complete that 12 months of training, you will need to sit for the NCLEX-PN test which is administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing. If you manage to pass that exam, then you will officially become a licensed vocational nurse. The exam is focused on several different psychological and medical aspect, such as the medical environment, health maintenance and promotion as well as the psychosocial integrity of the patient.
The good news regarding licensed vocational nurses is that the job outlook at the moment is excellent, and there is a one-fifth growth in the demand of new health care professionals at the moment. As a matter of fact, the vocational nursing field is considered to be one of the fastest growing health careers in the entire medical industry.
License And Certification
As the name implies, a LVN requires a license in order to be able to legally practice their profession in the United States of America. After having completed an accredited educational program, it is important that the LVN sits and pass a licensing exam that is required by all the 50 states of the US. However, it must be said that the licensure is different from the certification – while the first one is required in order for the licensed vocational nurse to actually practice in the medical field, the latter is purely optional and it is entirely up to the LVN to decide whether or not they will get their certification.
The certification for licensed vocational nurses, on the other hand, is granted by an independent credentialing organization and it proves that the LVN in question has advanced skills, experience, knowledge and training in their field of activity.
Licensed Vocational Nurse Salary In Canada, Australia And The United Kingdom
The average yearly salary of a licensed vocational nurse in the United Kingdom is of 38,000 pounds, while those who live and work in Canada usually earn around C$23/hour. At the same time, Australian LVNs usually earn around 50,000 a year.
Verdict On LVN Salary
To summarize, licensed vocational nurses are well-paid across all the 50 states of the United States, although the United Kingdom seems to be a far better choice for those who want to specialize in this medical field.