Are Alberta Rn's losing their jobs to LPN's?

  1. just last night, i was talking to a lpn who claims that at her hospital, the rn's she works with are extremely territorial in their role (mainly the med pass role).

    i cannot begin to fathom what she meant by this since i am still just a student...but she explained to me that the rn's are fearful of losing their jobs to the lpn's because the lpn's are cheaper to hire.

    i am at the present time on the fence as to what route to take. lpn or rn....and will need to decide this month if indeed i am accepted to the rn program. ( i am already in the lpn program but sitting on a wait list to begin).

    am i wise to get the rn under my belt...or by the time i graduate in 07 will i be without a job? or should i just continue on with my lpn?.

    while i was getting my immunizations the health nurse said to me...you will take my job soon..meaning....that once i graduate as an lpn...i will take over an rn spot. kinda stunned me for a second because i had no idea at that time just what she meant. is she right?

    all thoughts welcome.
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    Joined: Jun '04; Posts: 244; Likes: 1

    7 Comments

  3. by   Kudra
    when i was going through nursing school, i kept hearing that LPN's would be taking over the "bedside nursing" role in the next 5 years and nurses with BSN's would only be good for management... while it's been said that this would be the case for years, i've yet to see it really enter into practice... many units in my hospital don't allow LPNs to pass meds yet... i think it's ridiculous (i was an LPN before upgrading to my RN), because it would be a much more effective use of staff and as a LPN, i was trained to administer meds... but the majority of resistance on the units i've worked is not from territorial RNs, but from reluctant LPNs who don't want the responsibility of passing meds...

    as far as phasing out RN jobs in favour of LPNs, i would like to see them try it... there would be some major union action if they did...

    as health care providers, we're suppose to be a team... and there's room for all disciplines to be of value in the process... i don't see why LPNs and RNs have to be pitted against one another, when in reality, we should be working more closely together to better the working situation for ALL nurses...

    bottom line: i don't think it's something you really need to worry about...
    Last edit by Kudra on Jan 9, '05
  4. by   saskrn
    Quote from lady_nic2003
    just last night, i was talking to a lpn who claims that at her hospital, the rn's she works with are extremely territorial in their role (mainly the med pass role).

    i cannot begin to fathom what she meant by this since i am still just a student...but she explained to me that the rn's are fearful of losing their jobs to the lpn's because the lpn's are cheaper to hire.

    i am at the present time on the fence as to what route to take. lpn or rn....and will need to decide this month if indeed i am accepted to the rn program. ( i am already in the lpn program but sitting on a wait list to begin).

    am i wise to get the rn under my belt...or by the time i graduate in 07 will i be without a job? or should i just continue on with my lpn?.

    while i was getting my immunizations the health nurse said to me...you will take my job soon..meaning....that once i graduate as an lpn...i will take over an rn spot. kinda stunned me for a second because i had no idea at that time just what she meant. is she right?

    all thoughts welcome.
    right now, i am working in sk. lpn's are no allowed to work in my area. the icu's here do not allow lpn's either.

    actually, it has been my experience that lpn's are being phased out in canada and the us.

    if it were me, i'd go for the rn. good luck!
  5. by   Fiona59
    Isn't Saskatchewan the province where the RN's "invited" LPN's to join their bargaining unit (unions) to enable them to get better wages & benefits. Once they joined the union leadership did an about face and kind of pushed the LPN's out of the hospitals....

    That's how the story is told among LPN's in the rest of Canada.

    What I do know is that LPN's with appropriate continuing ed. can immunize in Alberta and work in every unit in Acute and are the backbone of LTC. Meds were never really an issue on most units as it was the facility that restricted what meds the LPN could pass. I had three differenent employers and three different sets of what I could pass and couldn't. In Acute, it was everything but IVmeds, LTC, nothing by needle, and in a day programme run through the same LTC it was everything except immunizations.

    When it comes to the crunch, provincial governments are going to have to start getting value for their health care dollar. An immunization trained LPN for grade school immunization programmes is a bargain compared to an RN.

    So, perhaps its time to use the "expensive" nurses in the more critical areas..
  6. by   saskrn
    [QUOTE=Fiona59]Isn't Saskatchewan the province where the RN's "invited" LPN's to join their bargaining unit (unions) to enable them to get better wages & benefits. Once they joined the union leadership did an about face and kind of pushed the LPN's out of the hospitals....

    That's how the story is told among LPN's in the rest of Canada.

    QUOTE]

    I don't know, I haven't practiced in SK for that long.

    My previous post was not intended to pit RN's againt LPN's, I was just stating what I had seen and experienced. This is obviously something you feel very passionately about, and I encourage you to have your opinions heard by Alberta Health (if that's what they're called).
  7. by   DDee
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    The only person who will know what's right for you is you. You have to examine what is most important to you and what your image of nursing is.
    I would recommend that you bite the bullet and take your RN. It make take longer and you may be in more debt, but in the long run, I think you may be viewed as a more educated person and therefore more capable of providing a better quality of care. I do not find anything wrong with the LPN's that I work with but from my experience patients feel more comfortable with a registered nurse. Besides, now days, becoming a LPN, you do most of what an RN can but for way less pay. Do what you feel is going to make you happy and provide you with a satifying career.
  8. by   Fiona59
    Just want you to know that the Saskatchewan Inst. of Applied Science & Technology is still offering the PN education at two sites. They also offer the advanced specialty courses for LPN's (including peri-operative, and gerontology).

    Courses are full and have waitlists in Alberta and BC. Hardly sounds like they "are being phased out".

    The role of the LPN is evolving and more and more bridge programs are being created. Perhaps the LPN will become the old style community college trained type of nurse (except they were called RN's). I know that Alberta will be changing the PN certificate to a diploma in the near future.

    Now, I'll agree that LPN's don't work ICU, but then neither do a lot of RN's its a matter of training.

    As another poster said you have to decide what you want to do.
  9. by   cathy Danyluk
    I have just completed an LPN refresher after 24 years out of nursing. I couldn't believe the difference in the training. I took a very good physical assessment course. All LPN's in Manitoba must have this course to be licensed. RN's doing the refresher don't have to take it,but it is a part of the RN course here now I believe.
    I also start IV's, add meds to them, give blood, I.M's, SC, and all oral meds. We also catheterize now. These are all changes since I first took the course. I would say that the government is getting good value for their dollar in Manitoba.
    Cathy

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