February 09, 2010
Role Transition and Professional Nursing As the student nurse transitions from the role of a nursing student to the professional level of nursing, the licensed registered nurse shall perform only those nursing activities for which the RN has been prepared through basic education and those additional skills, which are obtained through subsequent nursing education and within the scope of practice of an RN as determined by the board of Nursing. The Licensed Practical Nurse works in hospitals, clinic, as well as skilled nursing facilities, assisted living facilities, correctional facilities and dental offices. A licensed practical nurse may perform specific nursing skills and procedures under the supervision of an RN, Nurse Practitioner, Physician Assistant, Medical Doctor or Dentist. The licensed practical nurse may delegate to Certified Nurse Assistants or other non-licensed assistants. The LPNs scope of practice includes performance and documentation of basic patient care, vital signs, data collection on all body systems. The LPN carries out wound care orders, preparing patients for diagnostic testing, including specimens. The licensed practical nurse can place the insertion and care of urinary catheters and naso-gastric tubes. The LPN administers medications, but cannot administer IV push medications. IV push medications are under the scope of practice of the RN ( azbn, 2009). A LPN can collect blood specimens. The Licensed practical nurse does not have the same level of education to perform at the same level of the professional nurse. The licensed practical nurse is task oriented as the RN is more challenged in the coordination and flow of the care plan. Concerns from transitioning from the practical nurse transition are registered nurses hold a higher degree of legal responsibility. The
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