How to Become an LPN in Nebraska
Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN) continue to be in demand and make up 23% of the nursing workforce in Nebraska. Employment opportunities are expected to increase by 20 to 22% through the year 2020.
LPN job growth is expected to be a combination of new positions and increasing demand for additional nurses to fill current positions as the population continues to age with greater longevity and the advancement of medical technology that present new healthcare solutions and options.
The average LPN salary in Nebraska is $36,400, based on a 40 hour work week. An entry level LPN can expect to earn $24,000 to $26,000. LPN salaries can top out at $75,000, based on years of experience, level of responsibility and additional education undertaken beyond LPN studies. LPNs that choose to specialize in certain nursing fields, such as IV therapy, foot care or childbirth education, will command higher salaries.
The first step to becoming an LPN in Nebraska is to complete an accredited LPN program. Such programs that offer a certificate or diploma take 8 to 12 months to complete while a two year LPN program offer an Associate’s degree in nursing. LPN programs must be accredited and approved by the Nebraska State Board of Nursing in order for the student to take the National Council for Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN). LPN programs must be a combination of class work and clinical training. Class work typically includes courses such as nursing fundamentals, communication, medical terminology, nutrition, pharmacology, physiology and anatomy. Additional courses may also include nursing administration and obstetric, pediatric and geriatric studies.
After completing an LPN program, the graduate must apply to take the NCLEX-PN exam. LPNs cannot practice nursing without being licensed. Graduates apply to the Nebraska State Board of Nursing, and the application includes a fingerprint card and criminal background check, drug check, passport type photo, social security number and copy of a valid driver’s license or passport. The student will also be required to provide a copy of their transcript and documentation of successful completion of the LPN program. The transcript and documented proof of completion must be sent directly from the school to the State Nursing Board. The application will be reviewed and approved if all the information is in place.
The student will be required to register to take the exam with Pearson VUE, the administrator of the exam. Pearson will issue an authorization to test (ATT), and the graduate must present the ATT on the day of the exam. The graduate will be notified of the exam results within 48 hours and then be issued a license by postal mail within 7 to 10 days.
LPNs are required to renew their license every two years and licenses expire on 31 October of the odd year. License renewal requires the LPN to have practiced nursing for at least 500 hours during the past 5 years, except for LPNs with less than five years from graduation, 20 hours of continuing education with 10 hours being peer reviewed. LPNs must also complete a refresher program every 5 years and maintain a portfolio that includes the LPNs current competency goals and documentation of the professional activities to meet the goals.
LPNs perform a variety of duties, but those duties may vary according to the facility. LPNs work under the direction of a registered nurse or physician and are part of a medical team that includes nurses, doctors, nursing aides and technicians. LPNs check blood sugar levels, start IV treatments, distribute medications, including oral and injections, dress wounds, track vital signs, perform diagnostic testing, monitor patient progress or lack of progress, implement and maintain patient care plans and render basic patient care.
LPN Schools in Nebraska
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- Master of Science in Nursing: Nursing Administration
- Master of Science in Nursing: Nurse Educator
Approved Nebraska LPN Training Programs
Grand Island Campus
3134 West Highway 34
PO Box 4903
Grand Island, NE 68802
(308) 398-7455 Ext. 7455
PO Box 3777
Omaha, NE 68103
801 East Benjamin Avenue
PO Box 469
Norfolk, NE 68702
5401 South Street
Lincoln, NE 68506
1205 East 3rd Street
McCook, NE 69001
(308) 345-8164 Ext. 8164
4771 W. Scott Rd.
Beatrice, NE 68310
(402) 228-3468 Ext. 264
1601 E. 27th Street
Scottsbluff, NE 69361
(308) 635-3606 Ext. 6060