Licensed Practical Nurses


Employment Prospects


Approximately 728,900 licensed practical nurses are employed in the United States. The U.S. Department of Labor reports that 38 percent of LPNs work in nursing facilities, 15 percent work in hospitals, and 13 percent work in physicians' offices and clinics. Others are employed by home health care agencies, public health agencies, schools, residential care facilities, temporary staffing agencies, and government agencies.

Starting Out

After they fulfill licensing requirements, LPNs should check with human resource departments of hospitals, nursing homes, and clinics for openings. Employment agencies that specialize in health professions, and state employment agencies are other ways to find employment, as are school career services offices. Newspaper classified ads, nursing associations, and professional journals are great sources of job opportunities.

Advancement Prospects

Many LPNs use their license and experience as a stepping-stone for other occupations in the health field, many of which offer more responsibility and higher salaries. Some LPNs, for example, with additional training, become medical technicians, surgical attendants, optometric assistants, or psychiatric technicians. Many LPNs return to school to become registered nurses. Hospitals often offer LPNs the opportunity for more training, seminars, workshops, and clinical sessions to sharpen their nursing skills. Some LPNs pursue credentialing in specialties such as gerontology, long-term care, IV therapy, and pharmacology.

Tips for Entry

Read the Journal of Practical Nursing (https://napnes.org/drupal-7.4/JPN) to learn more about the field.

Visit the following Web sites for job listings:

  • https://www.simplyhired.com/
  • https://www.nurse.com/blog/category/nursing-career-and-jobs/
  • https://www.indeed.com/q-LPN-jobs.html

Join the National Association for Practical Nurse Education and Service and the National Association of Licensed Practical Nurses to access member-only publications, networking opportunities, certification, and other resources.