Day in the life of a Med/Surge LPN

  1. Hi all, I'm 1/4 of the way through with the 18 month LPN program I'm in (is it bad I'm already counting down the months) and I'm interested in Med/Surg nursing, what are your duties, what spectrum of pts do you deal with, what frustrations and rewards do you find with it? Thanks for your time!

    -Ben CNA
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  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   TheCommuter
    Marie LPN, one of our members, would be a good person to ask, though she's not quite in Med/Surg. Actually, she's a Virginia LPN working in the OR.
  4. by   Godswill
    I went to a hospital base LPN program which was 13 month, we did most of our schooling on a medsurg floor. WE would do every thing( even start iv's) but push meds in IV"s but sometimes if an RN was busy we woiuld just put the push in a 50 cc bag of fluid and hang it as and IV. We had our own load, by graduating we had to have 4-5 pt by ourself. We did everything. Assesment, PCA pumps, chest tubes, ng tubes etc. As far as blood the only thing we were not allow to do was Spike the bag we could do all the rest. I live in louisiana and the scope is very broad. The LPN work side by side with RN's out here for the most part and i was amaze with the respect they gave each other:hatparty: :hatparty:
  5. by   TheCommuter
    If you badly want to work on a hospital med/surg unit, make sure that money is not an issue to you. Hospitals tend to pay LPNs very marginally.
  6. by   christvs
    On the med/surg/tele unit I work on LPNs can do everything RNs can do except: hang blood transfusions, push IV meds, do the initial assessments on new patients, take telephone orders, and cannot touch PICC or central lines.
  7. by   nursesaideBen
    Thanks for all the info! I had heard that pay was less in a hospital than in a nursing home or rehab. Right now I work in a skilled nursing facility and I enjoy it a whole lot but I yearn for the hospital setting. Right now for our first 9 months of training we do have clinicals once a week at a VERY rural hospital and we don't really get to interact with the nurses that much except every once in while when they pop in for a second to assess IVs etc. While I know this hospital hires a lot of LPNs but the ones I do actually see seem so busy that I hate to burden them with my dumb questions. Next phase we go to larger hospitals surrounding the area for clinicals so hopefully I'll get more of a taste of what Med/Surg nursing is like, in the meantime please feel free to give me any info. whatsoever! Godswill, it sounds like you were in an awesome program and state to work in as an LPN! Commuter do you know what the starting pay for an LPN in your neigboring hospitals are? Thanks all
  8. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from nursesaideBen
    Commuter do you know what the starting pay for an LPN in your neigboring hospitals are? Thanks all
    I recently moved from southern California and LVNs started between $14 to $17 hourly at the hospital, and between $18 to $23 at LTCs.
  9. by   DONN
    I work in a hospital in Pa.. 500 beds acute care on the 6th floor which is all surgical patients: Cabg, general surgeries, Bariatrics, and a lot of telemetry. Chest tubes, drains, ostomies, wound vac's, you get the picture. I carry my own patient load of 6-8 and function to the limits of my practice. Our floor is the toughest in the hospital and the floor hols 48 patients total. I do it all: Meds, assessments, IV starts, dressing changes, call the DR.'s at 2:00 a.m,charting etc etc.. Its out there if you are really interested in going for it and when you get a years worth of experience or so you will be able to go anywhere you want in terms of location. As for the $ its not all that great, about 15.00/hr but it sure helps you develop those skills so when you go back for your RN, which you will, you will have it all over everyone else in you class. Im an LPN with 1.5 years under my belt and I have learned so much by working in this environment that I cant ever see myself in anything else at this point.....P.S. It is very hard when you first start out but you learn over time and it does get better, cant really say easier because its a tough job.
  10. by   nursesaideBen
    Wow, that is quite a pay difference, but heck I would be happy with anything more than the 8.75p/h I make now as a CNA lol :chuckle
  11. by   nursesaideBen
    Wow DONN, that sounds really awesome. Thanks!
  12. by   NurseMatt
    Great info, I am highly interested in med/surg as well. I am now on the waiting list for the LPN program in my city. Will journey on and go for the RN as well. I can't wait to get started.
  13. by   IdahoGirl
    I would try to get into an RN program right away after graduation if I were you. I would consider your PN training a valuable tool to gain entrance into an RN program and nothing more sad to say. They are pushing the lpns off of the med/surg floors where I live. Working as an Lpn, you will make more money in long term care. I give this advice out of experience, we are not valued any longer as lpns. Your CNA and LPN knowledge will assist to you become a great RN some day. You have a much better chance of working in med/surg as an Aide than you do as an Lpn.

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