Vocational nurses, also known as licensed vocational nurses or LVNs, are licensed medical professionals who offer high-quality medical care and attention to patients who are either in home-settings or in hospitals and private clinics. The duties and responsibilities of the licensed vocational nurse include administering the medication previously prescribed by the health care provider, administering the IV, answering phone calls from patients, monitoring their vital signs, temperature and blood pressure and so on. The median yearly wage of a licensed practical and vocational nurse varies in the United States of America between $32,000 and as much as $48,000 a year.
Pay Scale In Different Parts Of The United States of America
The highest paying state is Connecticut, with more than $52,000 a year for licensed vocational nurses. On the second place there is the state of Connecticut, which pays its LVNs a median salary of $50,000 a year, followed by Rhode Island with the same salary and the state of California, which pays its LVNs a median salary of just over $49,000 a year, just like Massachusetts and New Mexico.
Vocational Nurse Job Description
The duties and responsibilities of vocational nurse vary depending on their employer and their work environment. Those who work in state owned hospital settings usually deal with monitoring the conditions of the patient along with their vital signs (their pulse, their temperature and their blood pressure) and then write down their signs, symptoms and evolution. These professionals also administer oral and intravenous medications, they give injections and change the dressings of a wound or after a surgery. They are also trained to operate different medical machines, including feeding tubes. Some amount of paperwork may need to be taken care of as well, as part of the general administrative tasks that vocational nurses deal with in hospital settings.
On the other hand, vocational nurses who choose to work in home care and help patients at their residence also specialize in administering the treatments and medications prescribed by a doctor or a physician. At the same time, these professionals also perform other tasks that may not fall within the range of a nurse assistant, like helping patients get dressed or eat. Vocational nurses can also work with terminally ill patients, which requires them to show compassion and have great attention to detail.
In some cases, the vocational nurses can also collect blood and tissue samples to be tested in the lab, they can treat bedsores and give the patient massages or give patients enemas. Recording and updating the health history of the patient is also part of the general duties of licensed vocational nurses, along with filling the insurance forms when case.
How To Become A Vocational Nurse?
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Becoming a vocational nurse does take a few years of intense studying and practice, but the final result is certainly worth it. As it happens with any other medical profession in the health care industry, licensed vocational nurses must firstly graduate from a specialized and accredited vocational nursing program, with good grades.
These programs are especially designed for those who want to pursue a career as vocational nurses, and they are commonly offered by vocational schools and colleges across the United States of America. The vocational nursing training program typically takes around 12 months to complete, and the coursework covers topics like patient care, obstetrics and gynecology, paediatrics, pharmacology, first aid as well as the basics of nutrition, physiology along with human anatomy.
Those who want to make the best out of their career as vocational nurses can also enroll in a two-year Associate’s Degree program that will offer them a deeper insight into the medical field. Regardless of the chosen program, all future vocational nurses must possess some innate skills, such as great interpersonal skills, patience to work with the patients, a great attention to detail coupled with lots of compassion and empathy, especially since most of the vocational nurses work with terminally ill patients who need more care and attention than the others.
Most employers these days require vocational nurses to become licensed (LVN), and in order to get their license they must sit for the exam administered by the NCSBN, or the National Council of State Boards of Nursing. If they pass the exam, they will receive the NCLEX-PN credential.
Vocational Nurse Salary In Canada, Australia And UK
In Canada, a LVN can make up to CAD$56,000 a year depending on the work environment, while LVNs who work in the United Kingdom are typically paid a median salary that ranges between 14,000 and 22,000 pounds a year. Australia offers these health care providers an average yearly salary of around Au$40,000.
Verdict On Vocational Nurse Salary
To conclude, the salary of a vocational nurse can be particularly rewarding for those who work in home care.