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Breaking Down the Different Duties of an LPN

Nurse tends to patient Licensed practical nurses (LPNs) work in a surprisingly wide range of locations and roles, and as a result, they have many different duties depending on where their career takes them. Although all LPNs have a few core duties in common, it is not unusual for an LPN who works in a hospital to have different responsibilities from an LPN who works in a nursing home, and vice versa. Additionally, many LPNs work in other less traditional settings than these, so they perform different duties altogether.

If you’re interested in a career as an LPN, you should be aware of the specific duties you may have as well as understand the wide array of career possibilities available in varying working environments. Prism Career Institute, which offers a robust Practical Nursing program, breaks down LPN duties and settings here.

What Duties Do All LPNs Have?

The basic function of an LPN is to provide routine care for sick, injured, or disabled patients. Typically, LPNs coordinate with and assist physicians and registered nurses (RNs). The most common duties that LPNs perform involve:

  • Monitoring patients, such as charting vital signs
  • Changing bandages and catheters
  • Keeping detailed records of patients’ health
  • Collecting samples for blood tests, urinalysis, and more
  • Communicating treatment and health information to patients, doctors, and nurses

How Responsibilities Vary by Setting

In different working environments, LPN duties may vary to meet the needs of the patients there. For example, here’s what you can expect in some of the most common settings for LPNs:

Nursing Homes

In nursing homes, LPNs provide care to patients whose conditions have stabilized and are expected to be in the nursing home long-term. LPN responsibilities may include:

  • Admitting new residents
  • Aiding physicians and RNs during rounds of the residents’ rooms
  • Supervising other care staff
  • Performing health assessments
  • Administering medication
  • Helping residents with personal hygiene and eating

Home Health Care

Many LPNs are hired to work in the homes of patients to fulfill their health needs or assist a physician or RN with a patient’s day-to-day medical plan. These LPN duties vary and can include:

  • Monitoring vital signs and a patient’s overall health
  • Changing bandages, wound dressings, and catheters
  • Assisting with exercise and rehabilitation routines for patients
  • Aiding with medications
  • Remaining on-call in case a patient has a healthcare emergency

Hospitals and Urgent Care Facilities

Many LPNs work in hospitals or private clinics, where they support physicians and RNs. LPNs are also needed in urgent care facilities to carry out similar duties. Their responsibilities may include:

  • Taking vital signs, interviewing patients, and recording their health history
  • Administering medications and IVs
  • Maintaining patients’ charts and records and planning care to meet their needs
  • Supervising nursing assistants

Become Prepared as a Well-Versed LPN

There are a lot of job opportunities for LPNs, and they all involve a variety of skills and responsibilities. If you’re interested in these LPN duties, this career track might be right for you. Contact Prism Career Institute to learn more about the Practical Nursing program offered at our campuses in Cherry Hill and Egg Harbor, New Jersey, as well as in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Our program teaches all of the necessary skills to become a successful LPN – regardless of setting – after passing your licensure exam.

Get your medical career training started today. Call 1-888-966-8146