What Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses Do
Licensed practical nurses (LPNs) and licensed vocational nurses (LVNs) provide basic nursing care. They work under the direction of registered nurses and doctors.
Licensed practical and licensed vocational nurses work in many settings, including nursing homes and extended care facilities, hospitals, physicians’ offices, and private homes. Most work full time.
How to Become a Licensed Practical or Licensed Vocational Nurse
Licensed practical and licensed vocational nurses must complete a state-approved educational program, which typically takes about 1 year to complete. They must also be licensed.
Employment of licensed practical and licensed vocational nurses is projected to grow 16 percent from 2014 to 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations. As the baby-boom population ages, the overall need for healthcare services is expected to increase. LPNs and LVNs will be needed in residential care facilities and in home health environments to care for older patients.
This occupation supported 738,400 jobs in 2012 and 719,900 jobs in 2014, reflecting a decline of 2.5%. In 2012, this occupation was projected to increase by 24.8% in 2022 to 921,300 jobs. As of 2014, to keep pace with prediction, the expected number of jobs was 774,900, compared with an observed value of 719,900, 7.1% lower than expected. This indicates current employment trends are much worse than the 2012 trend within this occupation. In 2014, this occupation was projected to increase by 15.9% in 2024 to 837,200 jobs. Linear extrapolation of the 2012 projection for 2022 results in an expected number of 957,800 jobs for 2024, 14.4% higher than the 2014 projection for 2024. This indicates expectations for future employment trends are much worse than the 2012 trend within this occupation.