Licensed Practice Nurses (LPNs) spend an entire year in medical school learning complex jargon used to diagnose diseases as well as learning how to deal with patients during clinical practice. Despite the intense struggle to earn the qualification, most people tend to assume that LPNs are half-baked healthcare providers. It hurts a lot especially when such discrimination comes from doctors and other medical specialists.
7 Things That LPNs Hate The Most
1. LPNs Get Overworked Compared To Other Nurses
An LPN usually offers assistance to Registered Nurses and can periodically report to doctors when handing patient reports. However, the common misconception that LPNs are more of assistants than medics makes them suffer due to work overload. Everyone in the hospital tends to delegate even non-essential duties to LPNs.
The result of work overload is nurse burnout because the nurse is expected to deliver more than they can handle. It’s also frustrating when everyone in the hospital deems an LPN as inferior yet medical teams are supposed to operate under mutual respect.
2. LPNs Have To Deal With Irrational Family Members More Frequently Than Other Nurses
Homes for senior citizens are arguably the largest employers for LPNs. They usually require LPNs more than other nurse groups because elderly patients require less medical attention and it’s even possible to delegate some responsibilities to family members. However, this is where most problems with the patients’ family members arise.
One of the main challenges LPNs have to deal with is enduring many conflicts with family members that feel more knowledgeable than medical professionals. The LPN faces unnecessary opposition when trying to administer medication or offering advice regarding home care.
3. Struggle With Choosing A Nursing Specialty
LPNs are expected to serve a variety of general work duties ranging from collecting vitals to administering vaccines. While it may seem that the exposure to numerous tasks builds career experience, the average LPN struggles in finding their true calling amid the chaos.
LPNs who are struggling to gain a clear direction for their desired career path can suffer from stagnation later in their careers. It could also lead to people making wrong assumptions and quit nursing yet it’s the best career that matches their personality.
4. Employers Reward Career Experience Differently
Employers are obligated to increase salaries when their employees accumulate years of experience in the workplace. A newly graduated Registered Nurse earns approximately $45 per hour and the rate rises to $75 for those who’ve served for more than three years. However, things seem stagnant when it comes to LPNs who’ve been actively employed for a similar duration.
LPNs start with an hourly rate of $35 and after working for three years, employers raise it to around $50. This is quite demoralizing considering that a newly graduated RN or even one that’s in clinical practice earns more than a highly experienced LPN. There’s also little room to negotiate for paid holidays and other benefits enjoyed by RNs.
5. Stiff Competition For Small-Sized Premium Job Markets
The challenge with entry-level jobs is the abundance of labor that puts employers at an advantage when it comes to setting hourly rates for employees. That’s why most states across the country rarely offer hourly rates that exceed $35 even during crises when there’s a spike in demand for medical services. Newly graduated LPNs have no option but to accept what’s offered by their employers then save their money to enroll in RN bridging programs.
6. Lack Of Uniformity In Policies Regarding IV Drips
LPNs hate the fact that some states allow freshly graduated LPNs to administer medication through an intravenous (IV) drips while other places require these nurses to enroll in a special post-LPN course for three months. Some medical facilities even limit this role to RNs and Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs) yet it’s not a complex function.
7. Random Drug Tests From Employers
It takes a lot of time and patience for newly graduated LPNs to get used to the fact that employers can issue drug tests at will. Most nurses in their first year of practice experience high levels of anxiety due to the policies that exist in most organizations.