RPN/LPN/RNA all the same??? - page 4

by willow2004

34,964 Views | 85 Comments

I've been looking for information on nursing and the different levels of nursing. I'm getting a little confused. Are RPN/LPN/RNA all the same??? Also, I heard from a friend that Practical Nursing is going to be phased out in... Read More


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    Quote from Fiona59
    The CNA is looking at having the PN become the entry level of nursing up here, with nursing education being laddered from PN-RN-MSN-PhD.
    I'm sorry I do not mean to offend you, but I would really like to see where you're getting this information from.

    They will never make PN the entry-level of nursing in Canada. First of all, it is not economical for either student or hospital/health care setting. What would be the point in having a practical nurse status when they would require you to become an RN anyway. You may disagree, but the scope of practice for PNs and RNs in Canada is completely different. It is not at all logical to start someone off as a PN and then have to re-educate them in the duties of an RN

    Second of all, there is already an RN shortage, especially in Ontario. There are less and less applicants every year for the 4-year BScN program to become an RN.

    There is absolutely no way what you say will happen
  2. 0
    This information was provided by the CNA itself at various nursing conventions in 2007. I heard and received the paperwork while attending the CLPNA convention in April 2007. The speaker (whose name I can't recall at this time) gave the outline for CNA's plan and how the proposed to implement it. He felt (and when I use he, I'm using it the way he referred to CNA) felt that the role of bedside nursing was going to become the function of the PN with the BScN becoming more active in healthcare outside the hospital. That the basic education of nurses needed to be refocussed on caring for those in hospital and getting them out.

    What part of Canada do you work in? My scope of practice is very similiar to that of an RN in my province. About the only area you won't find a PN is the NICU. The PN education in my province now includes all the required "filler" university arts courses required of the BScN students. So the theoretical step programme is already being implemented slowly.

    This isn't meant to become a PN-RN debate. It was a discussion concerning the differences in what is a Practical Nurse, Psychiatric Nurse and Registered Nursing Assistant. Not a turf/education war.
  3. 2
    I am an RPN in Ontario(registered practical nurse) and my scope of practice is definitely not "completely different" from the RNs I work with.Our days and responsiblities are very much the same unless someone needs a blood transfusion or a PICC line flushed our days are pretty much the same.
    Fiona59 and Silverdragon102 like this.
  4. 0
    Quote from Fiona59
    This information was provided by the CNA itself at various nursing conventions in 2007. I heard and received the paperwork while attending the CLPNA convention in April 2007. The speaker (whose name I can't recall at this time) gave the outline for CNA's plan and how the proposed to implement it. He felt (and when I use he, I'm using it the way he referred to CNA) felt that the role of bedside nursing was going to become the function of the PN with the BScN becoming more active in healthcare outside the hospital. That the basic education of nurses needed to be refocussed on caring for those in hospital and getting them out.

    What part of Canada do you work in? My scope of practice is very similiar to that of an RN in my province. About the only area you won't find a PN is the NICU. The PN education in my province now includes all the required "filler" university arts courses required of the BScN students. So the theoretical step programme is already being implemented slowly.

    This isn't meant to become a PN-RN debate. It was a discussion concerning the differences in what is a Practical Nurse, Psychiatric Nurse and Registered Nursing Assistant. Not a turf/education war.
    I'm sorry, I didn't mean to make it sound like RNs have more responsibility than PNs. I respect what you do as I used to work with several PNs who are great nurses. My mom also recently became an RPN.

    The CNA usually says what sounds good to nurses, but never implements their goals/promises for us. They have been "creating" visions for the nursing future for many years now, and 9/10 times they fall through. The nursing situation in Canada, although not bad, can use a lot of improvement, and really nothing has changed for a few years.

    I actually work in Toronto at Sick Kids Hospital, they do not hire PNs here. I used to work at a smaller hospital outside of Toronto and they had few RPNs working there. I'm not too sure which province you're from, maybe the situation is different there than here. But I do know in Ontario RPNs are not allowed to hang blood products, start certain IV meds, do certain hospital assessments, go into managerial positions, etc.

    My mother actually completed an RPN program here in Ontario a couple of years ago (through Durham College), and the only place that considered her for a position upon completion of school was a nursing home. She's been there since she was hired and she loves it, but she sure had trouble finding a job.

    RPN/LPN was implemented years ago because of the RN nursing shortage facing Canada. I highly doubt that RPN/LPN will be the starting point for becoming a nurse in the future.
  5. 1
    I guess it depends on what area of Ontario you are in. I just graduated last year and I had a hospital job lined up before graduation. Most of my classmates are working in hospitals and there are many jobs to be had at the hospital in the next town.
    TaylorMade likes this.
  6. 0
    Quote from loriangel14
    I am an RPN in Ontario(registered practical nurse) and my scope of practice is definitely not "completely different" from the RNs I work with.Our days and responsiblities are very much the same unless someone needs a blood transfusion or a PICC line flushed our days are pretty much the same.
    I see. And what type of facility do you work for if you don't mind my asking?
  7. 0
    I work in a small hospital that is merged with the larger one in the next town.
  8. 0
    Quote from loriangel14
    I am an RPN in Ontario(registered practical nurse) and my scope of practice is definitely not "completely different" from the RNs I work with.Our days and responsiblities are very much the same unless someone needs a blood transfusion or a PICC line flushed our days are pretty much the same.

    Thanks, Lori.

    My hospital out here has told us that by the end of the year PICCs will be within my scope of practice. Right now, it's only the piercing of the TPN or blood bag, insertion of an NG (trained to but hospital policy prevents), and central line care that separates the PN from the RN at work. In post partum its mgso4 ivs. In dialysis its the iv push of one med on return (the PN dialysis nurse can sc inject the med) and it's fewer than 1 in 6 patients that need it. Wound vacs have long been ours as well.

    The full scope of practice of a PN is constantly expanding, the in house education never ending. We have in essence become the hospital trained RN of old out here.
  9. 0
    Yeah it's pretty much like that here too. The hospital that I work for is very supportive of PNs and as you say in house training expands our scope to the max.
  10. 0
    I think there will always be some hospitals that are RN only but usually they are those that handle patients with very acute problems that require more advanced skills. I have noticed somewhat of a change in RPN utilization even in the past few years with many more rehab type hospitals using RPN's to their full scope. In Ontario, budgets often rule the day for better or worse.


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