What is a Practical Nurse?

What is a Practical Nurse?

A practical nurse, or licensed practical nurse (LPN), is a healthcare professional who provides basic and specialized medical care to a wide range of patients. LPNs work under the supervision of registered nurses (RNs) and physicians, and they play a vital role in the healthcare team.

Job Duties:

LPNs perform a variety of tasks, including:

  • Measuring and documenting vital indicators, including blood pressure, temperature, and pulse
  • Administering medications
  • Providing wound care
  • Assisting individuals with daily tasks like bathing, getting dressed, and eating
  • Monitoring patients for changes in condition
  • Educating patients and their families about their health and care
  • Communicating with other members of the healthcare team

Educational Requirements:

Achieving the status of a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) necessitates the successful completion of an accredited practical nursing program. These programs typically take one year to complete and are offered at community colleges and vocational schools.

Salary Expectations:

The median annual salary for LPNs in the United States was $47,480 in May 2021, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The highest-paid LPNs earned more than $66,880, while the lowest-paid LPNs earned less than $35,610.

Work Environment:

Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) have the opportunity to work in a diverse range of healthcare environments, such as:

  • Hospitals
  • Nursing homes
  • Long-term care facilities
  • Clinics
  • Schools
  • Home healthcare agencies
  • Private practices

Why Become a Practical Nurse?

There are many reasons to become a practical nurse. LPNs provide essential care to patients in a variety of settings, and they play a vital role in the healthcare team. LPNs also have good job prospects and can earn a competitive salary.

If you are interested in a career in healthcare, becoming a practical nurse is a great option. LPNs provide essential care to patients and have good job prospects.

Here are some additional benefits of becoming a practical nurse:

  • Job security: The demand for practical nurses is expected to grow faster than average over the next decade, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  • Flexibility: LPNs can work full-time, part-time, or on-call. They can also choose to work in a variety of healthcare settings.
  • Personal satisfaction: LPNs have the opportunity to make a real difference in the lives of their patients.

Qualities of a Practical Nurse:

In addition to the educational and training requirements, there are some personal qualities that are important for practical nurses to have. These qualities include:

  • Compassion: LPNs should be compassionate and caring towards their patients.
  • Patience: LPNs often work with patients who are in pain or discomfort. They must possess patience and empathy.
  • Communication skills: LPNs need to be able to communicate effectively with patients, their families, and other members of the healthcare team.
  • Organizational skills: LPNs need to be able to manage their time effectively and organize their work so that they can provide the best possible care to their patients.
  • Problem-solving skills: LPNs need to be able to think critically and solve problems quickly and efficiently.

If you have the qualities listed above, you may be well-suited for a career as a practical nurse.

How to Become a Practical Nurse

To become a practical nurse, you must complete the following steps:

  1. Earn a high school diploma or GED.
  2. Complete an accredited practical nursing program.
  3. Pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN).
  4. Apply for a license to practice as a practical nurse in your state.

Once you have completed these steps, you will be able to work as a licensed practical nurse.


Becoming a practical nurse is a rewarding career choice. LPNs provide essential care to patients and have good job prospects. If you are interested in a career in healthcare, becoming a practical nurse is a great option.

Additional Resources:

  • National League for Nursing (NLN): https://www.nln.org/
  • National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN): https://www.ncsbn.org/
  • Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS): https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/licensed-practical-and-licensed-vocational-nurses.html

How to Be a Successful Practical Nurse

Once you have become a licensed practical nurse, there are some things you can do to be successful in your career:

  • Be a lifelong learner. The field of nursing is constantly changing, so it is important to stay up-to-date on the latest trends and developments. You can do this by reading nursing journals and books, attending conferences, and taking continuing education courses.
  • Be a team player. LPNs often work with a variety of healthcare professionals, including RNs, physicians, and therapists. It is important to be able to collaborate effectively with others to provide the best possible care for your patients.
  • Be an advocate for your patients. LPNs play an important role in advocating for their patients’ needs. This includes speaking up for their patients when they have concerns and ensuring that they receive the care they deserve.
  • Be compassionate and caring. LPNs should treat their patients with compassion and respect. They should also be understanding of their patients’ needs and concerns.

Here are some additional tips for success:

  • Be organized and efficient. LPNs have a lot of responsibilities, so it is important to be organized and efficient in order to manage their time effectively.
  • Be able to work under pressure. LPNs often work in fast-paced and stressful environments. It is important to be able to remain calm and focused under pressure.
  • Be able to handle difficult patients. LPNs may encounter difficult patients from time to time. It is important to be able to deal with these patients in a professional and compassionate manner.

With hard work and dedication, you can have a successful and rewarding career as a practical nurse.


Becoming a practical nurse is a great way to start a career in healthcare. LPNs play a vital role in the healthcare team and provide essential care to patients in a variety of settings. If you are interested in a career as a practical nurse, there are many resources available to help you get started.

Practical Nurse Traits to be Successful | PITC Institute

If you’re considering a rewarding career in practical nursing and if you want to become a successful practical nurse, you’re about to embark on a journey that not only demands academic knowledge but also calls for a unique set of qualities and skills like nurturing empathy, communication, critical thinking, adaptability, and attention to detail. Join us now!

Florence Nightingale is always referred as the founder of Modern Nursing. She is the ideal for all the students who wants to become a successful practical nurse
(Florence Nightingale)

Unveiling the Top 5 Traits to Become a Successful Practical Nurse

In this article, we’ll delve into the core traits that define a successful practical nurse, and we’ll also shed light on how our practical nursing program can help you nurture these qualities to become a healthcare hero.

1. Empathy: The Compassionate Connection every Practical Nurse Requires

Undoubtedly, the cornerstone of any exceptional practical nurse is empathy, which is the ability to understand and share the feelings of others.

In the world of healthcare, empathy is what bridges the gap between patients and caregivers, thus fostering a trusting relationship that’s crucial for effective treatment.

A practical nurse showing empathy to her patient

According to a study by the Journal of General Internal Medicine, patients treated by empathetic healthcare professionals experience reduced anxiety, better pain management, and improved overall satisfaction with their care.

At our vocational school, we firmly recognize the significance of empathy, and we proactively integrate it into our curriculum through activities like role-playing exercises, simulated patient interactions, and real-life clinical experiences.

This approach ensures that our students not only grasp the theoretical aspects of nursing but also develop the essential emotional intelligence to provide compassionate care.

Our instructors emphasize the importance of seeing patients as individuals with unique needs and emotions.

It helps in preparing our students to become compassionate caregivers and successful practical nurse.

2. Strong Communication Skills of a Practical Nurse: The Art of Effective Dialogue

A successful practical nurse must possess excellent communication skills to effectively interact with patients, their families, and the healthcare team.

Ensuring clear and concise communication accurately relays vital information, reducing the risk of medical errors.

In fact, a report by the National Academy of Medicine suggests that ineffective communication can contribute to a significant number of adverse events in healthcare settings.

In our program, we specifically place a strong emphasis on comprehensive communication training, ensuring students are well-prepared to excel in their interactions with patients, colleagues, and other healthcare professionals.

From mastering the art of therapeutic communication to enhancing documentation skills, our students learn how to be effective communicators in diverse healthcare scenarios.

3. Critical Thinking: The Power of Analytical Minds

Practical nurse professionals often face complex and fast-paced situations that require quick thinking and sound decision-making.

Critical thinking allows nurses to assess, analyze, and prioritize patient needs, leading to better outcomes and safer care.

Research published in the Journal of Nursing Education has shown a positive correlation between critical thinking skills and nursing competence.

Through interactive case studies, problem-solving exercises, and clinical simulations, our practical nursing program hones students’ critical thinking abilities.

This rigorous training equips them to become successful practical nurses who can make informed decisions and provide optimal patient care.

We encourage students to challenge assumptions, explore different perspectives, and develop a strong clinical reasoning foundation.

4. Adaptability: Navigating the Dynamic World of Healthcare & Practical Nurse

Indeed, in the healthcare realm, change is constant.

Whether it’s advancements in medical technology or new protocols, nurses must be adaptable and embrace continuous learning.

A study in the Journal of Hospital Administration indicates that nurses with high adaptability are more likely to embrace innovations and deliver higher-quality care.

Additionally, we designed our program to instill a growth mindset in our students.

We expose them to evolving healthcare practices, encourage participation in workshops and seminars, and nurture a culture of adaptability.

By being open to change, our graduates are better equipped to thrive in the dynamic healthcare landscape and, indeed become a successful practical nurse.

5. Attention to Detail: Practical Nurse Professionals are the Guardian of Patient Safety

Hospitals entrust practical nurses with administering medications, monitoring patient conditions, and observing subtle changes in health status.

Moreover, a keen eye for detail is critical to detecting early signs of deterioration and preventing adverse events.

Furthermore, studies have shown that attention to detail is directly linked to patient safety outcomes.

A practical nurse showing analytical mind and attention to details

In our program, we dedicate specific modules to sharpening students’ observation skills and attention to detail.

Through hands-on practice and supervised clinical rotations, our students develop the vigilance required to keep their patients safe.


Congratulations, future nursing superheroes!

As you embark on your journey to become a practical nurse, remember that academic knowledge is just one aspect of the equation.

To excel in this noble profession, you must also nurture qualities like empathy, communication skills, critical thinking, adaptability, and attention to detail.

At PITC Institute, we are committed to empowering you with not only the knowledge but also the essential traits that define a successful practical nurse.

To this end, we designed our comprehensive program to cultivate these qualities, ultimately helping you shape a fulfilling and impactful career in healthcare.

Ready to embark on a rewarding journey of healing and compassion? Warmly invite you to join us at PITC Institute.

Join us on this transformative journey, where we’ll awaken the heart of a healthcare hero within you.

Practical nursing is the right choice for you if you are interested in pursuing a healthcare career.

Visit our website for detailed information on practical nurse program.

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