Are LPN's professionals?

  1. Hi, I'm working on a presentation for my final in lpn school, and I got the subject of are lpn's professionals, or ancillary?
    Could you direct me to any articles or discussions that you know of on this subject?
    I've been perusing the alaska statutes and regs. It looks like they consider rn's professionals, but cna's and lpn's not, but they do perform professional work, and can be busted for unprofessional behavior, ect.
    Thanks
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  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   StocktonNurse
    Quote from aklpnstudent
    Hi, I'm working on a presentation for my final in lpn school, and I got the subject of are lpn's professionals, or ancillary?
    Could you direct me to any articles or discussions that you know of on this subject?
    I've been perusing the alaska statutes and regs. It looks like they consider rn's professionals, but cna's and lpn's not, but they do perform professional work, and can be busted for unprofessional behavior, ect.
    Thanks
    To me I think a nurse is only a professional if he or she has a doctorate behind their license. Whether it be an RN LVN or CNA. Of course it would be an RN with a BSN, to MSN, and then fully be titled with a PhD in Nursing. That is what I consider a professional. What you are going into are ethics of nursing. Check out "professional nursing ethics" under google to see what you may find. I took a nursing ethics class at my university and we talked about nothing but that in the beginning of the semester. There are articles out there, just gotta hunt them down. I will check tomorrow since I gotta get my sleep.
  4. by   augigi
    For immigration purposes, a "professional" is required to have at least a Bachelor degree.
  5. by   TheCommuter
    The "professional" world of academia considers any type of educational attainment ineffectual if it ranks below the baccalaureate level.
  6. by   nurse4theplanet
    Professional - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    "A professional is required to possess a large knowledge derived from extensive academic and practical training. Professional skills are important to the well-being of society. Professions are self-regulating, in that they control the training and evaluation processes that admit new persons to the field. Professionals have autonomy in the workplace; they are expected to utilize their independent judgment in carrying out their professional responsibilities. Finally, professions are regulated by ethical standards.
    Typically a professional provides a service in exchange for payment in accordance with established protocols for licensing, ethics, procedures, standards of service and training/certification. However, at all times a professional is cognizant that their first and foremost responsibility is to the public welfare.
    The term "professional" is commonly used incorrectly. The distinction between professional sports and amateur sports simply refers to how the athlete is funded. Typically, behaving professionally would indicate that the person's actions remain in accordance with specific rules, written or unwritten, pertaining to behavior, dress, speech, etc. By extension, the adjective professional identified somebody recognized for expertise or skill in a craft or activity.
    In narrow usage, not all expertise is considered a profession. Although sometimes referred to as professions, such occupations as skilled construction work are more generally thought of as trades or crafts. The completion of an apprenticeship is generally associated with skilled labor or trades such as carpenter, electrician, plumber, and other similar occupations.
    In the strictest sense, the professional fields are limited to accounting, architecture, clergy, engineering, intelligence, law, medicine, and officers."



    I thought this was interesting.
    Last edit by nurse4theplanet on Dec 11, '06
  7. by   nursesaideBen
    Well since people with BSN's are Professional Nurses I hope that doesn't make ASN's and LPN's unprofessional nurses!
  8. by   EmerNurse
    You have the "formal" definition of a professional, as someone posted above. Mainly it's based on education.

    But then... you have the real working world "professional". The person who comports him/herself in a professional manner. Looks like he cares about himself and his position, presents herself to her clients, customers, or patients in an appropriate manner, seeks out additional knowledge useful to the work at hand, able to perform competently and ethically whether or not anyone is watching over their shoulder, serves as an example and model of the behavior expected in the position they hold, honest and has integrity and seeks to do an excellent job regardless of where their employer puts the "bar" for acceptable job performance. This is the kind of person I call a professional, on the floor at work.

    Give me the CNA who anticipates a patients' or co-workers' needs and acts to meet that need, the nurse who shows up for work on time, and lends a hand when a co-worker is drowning and does extra CEUs just for the knowledge to provide better patient care, the RT who'll cut his break a little short to get down to the ER to give a treatment to a patient who's SOB but who's probably just having an anxiety attack, the security guard who hears a tone of voice and edges a tad closer "just in case". The CT tech who will bring back a patient from CT and then TAKE the next one down for us because he sees we're all swamped... the list goes on and on, but you get the picture.

    I appreciate the formally educated professionals out there - but give me the working professionals on my floor any day. I have no interest in the letters after their name - only in their professional work ethic.

    It's possible to be a formally educated professional AND a working professional, but it's also possible to be a "professional" even without the education, if one has the qualities of a professional.

    We can spend all our lives (and probably will) deciding whether nurses (no matter what kind) are formally educated professionals - but that alone doesn't make the floor run smoothly, does it?
    Last edit by EmerNurse on Dec 11, '06
  9. by   nurse4theplanet
    EmerNurse...I really enjoyed your post! You are so right!

    This is an interesting topic because when I first saw the title before even reading the OPs comment, my first reaction was "Of course LPNs are professionals." Then when I saw some of the first few comments about having to have a Bachelor's degree to be considered a professional, I decided to read a little of the literature out there before answering. I couldn't find anything that suggested that a 'professional' needs to have a minimum level of education, i.e. a bachelor's degree. If anyone would like to provide a link to that info, then I would love to read it.

    As a ADN nursing student, it does bother me somewhat to imply that an LPN or an ADN nurse is not considered a professional simply because they do not possess a four year degree. By definition, as posted above, a professional should possess 'extensive academic and practical training.' That is a very broad and possibly subjective definition. In my opinion, I possess extensive academic and practical training in nursing in relation to the lay person or even an LPN. However, if you compare ADNs or even BSNs to the level of MSN and PHD then that's a different story. 'Extensive practical training' is very dependent upon experience. An ADN with 30+ years experiences possesses more extensive practical training and more 'expertise' than a new BSN grad, which also falls into the definition of a professional. This is not a discussion over whose degree is better, rather a closer look into the definition and its requirements.

    Nursing itself has struggled to be recognized as a ligitimate profession. It meets all the requirements listed in my previous post. The nursing profession is made up of all nurses: LPN, ADN, BSN, MSN, PHD, etc. So is it not a sum of its parts? Why can nursing be a profession without each of its levels of nurses be considered a professional? If all nurses are governed by the same code of ethical and legal standards, licensing requirements, etc.

    Perhaps one's degree is much less important than one's level of expertise, in order to be considered a professional. If you have a plumbing problem, you want an expert 'professional' plumber to come and do the job, not just an average handy-man, right? If you have a rare disease, you want a specialist with extensive experience treating the disorder, not a family practitioner right out of med school.

    Collectively, a group of individuals may be considered professionals, but one's own ethical behavoir, or lack there of, can determine otherwise as well. You encounter accounts in the media frequently that describe highly educated doctors, lawyers, and nurses acted unethically and against their profession's standards of conduct.

    My concluding thoughts are these;
    A professional is much more than an individual who is said to belong to a particular profession,

    A professional is not limited to the constraints of holding a minimum level of degree,

    A professional upholds the ethcial standards of one's organization and one's duty to the public

    A professional seeks out learning experiences, stays abreast of new technologies and advancements in treatment, and actively participates to advance their profession and its standards


    These are requirements that are not met by a possessing a degree or level of academic achievement, they are met on an individual level.
    Last edit by nurse4theplanet on Dec 11, '06 : Reason: most spelling errors
  10. by   Plagueis
    Quote from nursesaideBen
    Well since people with BSN's are Professional Nurses I hope that doesn't make ASN's and LPN's unprofessional nurses!
    Unfortunately, some of the nursing career books that I have read refer to RNs as professional nurses, and LPNs as "technical" nurses. One book didn't say that only BSNs, and not ASNs, were not professional, but it implies that LPNs aren't professionals, which I don't believe at all.
  11. by   S.N. Visit
    I am a professional hairdresser and have a "professional cosmetology license," in the state of Iowa . I have a diploma for 2400 contact hours, not a bachelors, masters or PHD. I don't see why an LPN would be considered any different from being professional. ............"A professional is required to possess a large knowledge derived from extensive academic and practical training. Professional skills are important to the well-being of society. Professions are self-regulating, in that they control the training and evaluation processes that admit new persons to the field. Professionals have autonomy in the workplace; they are expected to utilize their independent judgment in carrying out their professional responsibilities. Finally, professions are regulated by ethical standards."
  12. by   Tweety
    Quote from nursesaideBen
    Well since people with BSN's are Professional Nurses I hope that doesn't make ASN's and LPN's unprofessional nurses!
    This thread will take a downward spiral in a New York minute if we go there. LOL

    Let's not confuse the acedemic definision of a "profession" with behavior, such as professional behavior. All nureses, CNA's, secretaries, housekeepers are held to the standard of professional behavior.
    Last edit by Tweety on Dec 12, '06
  13. by   ZASHAGALKA
    You have to understand that many of the BSN programs spend their first week of school hinting that nurses AREN'T professional, because we don't have a 'minimum entry to practice' - which we DO, but not a BSN minimum.

    Then, after telling out newest protegees that nurses in all probability AREN'T profesionals, those programs turn around and say, to the extent nursing IS professional, it is vested at the BSN level.

    A little academic elitism is present in that assertion.

    Of course, many in graduate programs are taught that THEY are professionals, and RNs alone are not.

    And, I'm sure you'll find ADNs that argue that THEY are professional, and LVNs not.

    And LVNs? Why, THEY are professional, and CNAs, not.

    Since the largest amount of professional debate turns on BSN minimum entry to practice, an arbitrary marker, to be sure, many of your responses are going to 'tow the Tower line' on this point.

    But, if you have to do a paper on it, I would argue that 'professional' is at least as much or more a subjective term then an objective one.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.

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