We all know that a license practical nurse spends most of her time in the hospital or in some healthcare facility providing care to most patients. But do we really know what goes on in a typical day for a license practical nurse? Yes, we may see them go in and out of patient rooms checking vital signs, observing patients, dressing wounds, administering medications, their heads bent all the time at some patient chart taking notes. This may be due to the fact that an LPN works under the supervision of a registered nurse or an attending physician. This may be the reason why all the LPNs we see each time we visit a hospital is always in a hurry.
Do they ever take time to sit down and relax? Are they allowed that much luxury to take a breather or sip a cup of coffee? Perhaps a glimpse at a typical day for a license practical nurse would shed some light.
A license practical nurse is responsible for observing patients, charting down their reactions in response to medications or treatments, and reporting them to a registered nurse on duty, if not, to the attending physician. A good deal of intellect, tact, care, and a sound judgment is needed by LPNs to perform their task at hand. These type of skills are much required, in addition to physical stamina, in this line of work. The most important would be to remain flexible at all times.
A normal nursing shift is usually eight hours long whether you work during the morning, the evening, or the night shifts. Sometimes, due to a heavy workload, a nurse can be extended for up to 12 hours sometimes during night time. The belief that a license practical nurse shift may be much more relaxing at night because patients will be asleep holds a huge misconception. Some patients become restless at night having rested for a whole day and may become demanding during a nurse's shift. Let's get to know how an LPN starts her day of work.
Start Of Shift
An LPN starts her shift by talking to the nurse who handled the patients during the previous shift. Through this, an LPN learns on what to expect during the next eight hours, the patient's diagnosis, medications, and what special care would be required for each patient. An LPN would also need to go over a doctor's report for each patient to be updated with the patient's current condition. Treatment sheets are readied for each patient for recording the patient's history and other important information picked up from the chart. You'll need time to look at the lab tests that have and will be run to keep you from getting sidetracked just in case, the unexpected happens.
Meeting With The Patients
A balance load is given to each license practical nurse regarding which patient has extra needs and which patient has less need for help. Part of this patient care procedure would include taking specimen samples for lab tests, monitoring catheters, dressing wounds, as well as assisting with the patient's daily needs such as feeding, bathing, and changing clothes.
A license practical nurse may be needed to do administrative work after shift such as filling out health care and insurance forms for patients. LPNs will also prepare their reports at the end of every shift for use to the next nurse on duty.