Can I work as LPN once I have RN license?

  1. 0
    Hey everyone, I know this sounds like a strange question, and I am going to try my best to explain.
    I am a LPN currently finishing my ADN (9/2011) and planning on going on to get my BSN (starting 10/2011) at a different school all within the same metro area.

    So if I take and pass the NCLEX in October (a requirement for the BSN program), can I work as a LPN at my current job while in school, or do I have to try and find a new job as a RN? I work as an agency nurse, with 24 years experience and very few if any jobs around here for RN's, many that require a minimum 1 year experience that I will not have to be able to apply for the positions.

    This subject has also come up with others in my ADN program who are CNA's and scrub tech's who are worried that they will not be able to find a job right away as RN's, and wonder if they can keep working as CNA's or Scrub Tech's.
    Thanks for all the help in advance!!
  2. 16,330 Visits
    Find Similar Topics
  3. 11 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    I don't think you can do that. You have to practice under your highest license, which then would be RN.

    Maybe someone else knows more about this?
  5. 0
    I've never seen a consistent answer to that question on allnurses. Some people say "you have to work to your highest license" but there are many posts from RNs who are actually working as a CNA or a LPN someplace. I've looked, and I haven't found a written policy anywhere that explains the rationale for that in concrete terms.

    One nurse here discovered that in her state she could still work as an LPN only if she took the NCLEX-PN and was issued the actual license. So in her state you could have two licenses - but I've also heard others insist you must surrender your LPN license once you pass the NCLEX-RN. Probably checking with the BON for your state is the best route to find out for sure.
  6. 0
    You can, You can use whatever license
  7. 2
    i guess it depends on your state. if your state allows you to have both licenses at the same time then you can. i have both my lpn and rn licenses active in new jersey so i can work as an lpn if i want to. but why would i do that if i get paid way more as an rn? the only time i will do that is if the lpn position is really interesting.

    i worked as an lpn for a month last year even though i already hold an rn license because my job takes a long time to upgrade you to an rn. maybe you can ask your current job to upgrade you to rn?
    adnrnstudent and srleslie like this.
  8. 3
    YOU can work under any license that you have earned so long as it is current. I am an LPN, RN, EMT-P, and EMT-B. I sometimes pick up agency LPN shifts since I am also an LPN. You just have to remember that if you are working off of a multitude of licenses that you must remain within the laws and scope of practice for which the license you are functioning under entails.
  9. 1
    Quote from dannyboy1617
    YOU can work under any license that you have earned so long as it is current. I am an LPN, RN, EMT-P, and EMT-B. I sometimes pick up agency LPN shifts since I am also an LPN. You just have to remember that if you are working off of a multitude of licenses that you must remain within the laws and scope of practice for which the license you are functioning under entails.
    That is a crazy response to a question. You have a higher ranked license, in which you have the capablities of performing, why wouldn't it be in your scope of practice.

    If I'm an RN and have an LPN license, but I work in an LPN position, I couldn't give IV Medications, but wait? I'm an RN?

    That just sounds crazy, I agree with the above statement, you need to contact your State Board of Nursing. As an RN you have the education to function as both, why would you want to use your LPN license anyways if you are an RN.
    MyLady23 likes this.
  10. 2
    Dannyboy is correct at least in California. With all of his current licenses/certifications it would be even more important to work within the scope of the license. It's done for liability reasons for both the employee/employer, for issues related to rate of pay, and probably for union representation in places with unions.
    XODIANE and hgrimmett like this.
  11. 0
    Does anybody know if you can work as lpn even if you have rn in illinois? I just want to gain experience and confidence first as lpn before working as rn. Thank you
  12. 0
    To help with the question whether an RN can work as an LPN or CNA? I found this information on the Washington DOH link. My understanding of this document is an RN can work as an RN in a LPN position realizing that they are not to sign any documents as an LPN, but as an RN.....An RN signs documents as an RN. An RN has sufficient education to work in an LPN position and still remains in their scope of practice of an RN. The employer is getting the benefits here of an RN working for LPN pay. The RN is not expanding their skills and nursing process at the RN level, but as a new graduating RN who can't find a job this may be beneficial. At least they are practicing some of their skills and earning money, while waiting for an RN position to become available. An RN is well qualified for an LPN or CNA position.

    http://www.doh.wa.gov/hsqa/professio.../JobTitles.pdf


Top