Texas is facing an unprecedented nursing shortage where the gap between supply and demand grows wider each year for the coming decade. (1) The Licensed Practical Nursing Test is just as challenging as the Registered Nurse Entrance Test. There are resources which provide the necessary preparation for the Licensed Practical Nurse Test for each Licensed Practical Nursing School across the country. Prospective Licensed Practical Nursing students do not always know where to turn to find the materials to achieve a passing score on the Nursing Entrance Test. Online materials are available for both tests and much more. The initial entrance test is the first hurdle that prospective LPNs/LDN's must maneuver through. If this test is completed with a high score then the student goes on to becoming a Licensed Degree Nurse. It is suggested when using online tests and tutorials to begin with the first of the tests in each section. Since each test increases in level of difficulty and reading comprehension it behooves the student to start at the beginning. The student should begin testing with the untimed option. Using the timed option on material that is foreign or new will only make the student feel inadequate. It is much better to use the untimed option so that the problems can be worked through at leisure, and the answers and explanations are thoroughly understood.
Prospective Licensed Practical and Licensed Degree Nurses are encouraged to take advantage of all of the resources offered, as they will be tested on similar knowledge once in the program. Just as there is a need for Registered Nurses there is also a need for Licensed Practical Nurses. Licensed Practical Nurses can find employment readily in hospitals, homecare, and medical office settings. Although the scope of practice is different from state to state, the Licensed Practical Nurse will always be under the auspices of the Registered Nurse and physician. The job description of the Licensed Practical Nurse includes taking patients vital signs, attending to wound care, (superficial to first degree decubitus ulcers, and two day post operative wound care, assisting patient with self care, emptying foley catheters, passing medication,( they cannot give I.V.Push medication), bathing patient, assisting in post operative exercise and or walking the patient, and engaging in reporting off to the Registered Nurse. While the scope of practice is limited for an Licensed Practical Nurse, it is interesting to note that the salary difference is within five to seven dollars less than a Registered Nurse.
Licensed Practical Nurses are entitled to the same benefits of tuition reimbursement as Registered Nurses. Becoming a Licensed Practical Nurse or Licensed Degree Nurse is not as demanding a becoming a Registered Nurse, and the pay is not that much different. It is no wonder that more and more people are considering a career as a Licensed Practical Nurse.
Texas Center for Nursing Workforce Studies
Texas Department of State Health Services
Center for Health Statistics and the Statewide Health Coordinating Council
Texas Center for Nursing Workforce Studies Advisory Committee/November 1, 2006
Paper Publication No. 25-12513
Electronic Publication No. E25-12513
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Article Added on Monday, May 4, 2009
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