Difference between CNA & LPN

  1. Hi I am new to the boards and and considering applying to a private LPN school. In my research I was trying to find exactly what LPN's did and I was wondering if LPN's change diapers or if that was more a CNA thing. I heard that is CNA duties but then I read that it is more a LPN jobs.

    Could someone tell me more about LPN duties?
    Last edit by Joe V on Feb 18, '17
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    About FarFrom

    Joined: Oct '06; Posts: 1

    11 Comments

  3. by   leeae85
    Some of the main things that an LPN would do may slightly differ if they were working in LTC versus a hospital. I'm an LPN and I currently work for a nursing home, and my day basically goes like this: pass my morning meds, do some charting, take off any orders that the Dr. may have written, do any dressing changes that are due, draw blood, do all my body assessments that I have due for that shift, breathing treatments, change colostomy appliances, PEG tubes, blood sugars and ect.

    In b/t all that, I will help answer call lights, assist in the dining room with the residents that can't feed themselves, and take residents to the toilet. I guess i wouldnt say that i "change diapers", but yes, I still do help people to the restroom if their call light is on. I figure, "why hunt for the CNA, when i can just get them on the potty, and be done with it." Now granted, I can't help all the time, b/c Lord knows I have so much of my own stuff to do, but i dont mind helping out my CNA's, b/c they also help me out when i have a favor. I am enjoying being an LPN, but am working on my RN currently, b/c a hospital really doesn't pay LPN's that much, but nursing homes pay pretty good, and I like the fact that I will have my same patients everytime I come in, so I can really get to know them.
  4. by   charebec65
    The other post pretty well covered it I think. I've seen RN, BSN's "change diapers". No, it's not the main part of an LPN's job but we really must all work together.
  5. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from FarFrom
    Hi I am new to the boards and and considering applying to a private LPN school. In my research I was trying to find exactly what LPN's did and I was wondering if LPN's change diapers or if that was more a CNA thing. I heard that is CNA duties but then I read that it is more a LPN jobs.

    Could someone tell me more about LPN duties?
    Here are some differences between CNAs and LPNs.....

    1. My CNAs earn $9 hourly. I earn more than double their hourly wage ($18.50 per hour, to be more precise).
    2. I don't change diapers, feed patients, transfer patients, give baths, or perform what are commonly known as "CNA duties".
    3. I administer medications and treatments, report changes in condition, dress wounds, verify orders, perform CPR during codes, operate wound vacuums, flush PICC lines, keep G-tubes patent, chart, do assessments, and a whole host of other duties.
    4. I posess a state-issued nursing license and am responsible for maintaining it. CNAs are not licensed.

    The CNAs are very important to the healthcare team, but I am not one. Please click on the links below to learn the objective differences.

    LPN duties and job outlook
    CNA duties and outlook
  6. by   pagandeva2000
    Well, at my job, we are not really doing ADL care for the patients as LPNs, however, if called upon, we would have to. Passing medications is top priority for us, because medications have to be administered in a timely fashion (not saying that it usually goes that way) in order to keep therapeutic values consistant. I would help to lift patients if necessary, but to be honest, we get yelled at by the head nurse if meds are not passed out on time the same way the CNA would be disciplined for not doing their job. Like TheCommuter stated, we aren't nursing assistants, therefore, you may not see where we all perform their functions. And, it is not personal...the job is just different.
  7. by   austin heart
    "changing diapers: is a healthcare providers job. That includes we RNs as well.
    LVN responsabilities vary from state to state and even from facility to facility. The hospital in which I work does not even employ LVNs. My sugestion is to check with your states Board of Nurse Examiners and see what the scope of practice is for an LVN in the state in which you choose to practice.
  8. by   Mz Jenkins
    I am so grateful for your reply, I feel no matter what title you hold CNA, LPN, RN etc patient care is always first and far most important issue. I understand as a CNA the nurses can't help all the time neither can we, but most RN, LPN think they are to sit and look at fb and chat 24/7 .. So thank you very much for honesty and appreciation for helping your CNA whom are Nurses as well
  9. by   sallyrnrrt
    Quote from TheCommuter
    Here are some differences between CNAs and LPNs.....

    1. My CNAs earn $9 hourly. I earn more than double their hourly wage ($18.50 per hour, to be more precise).
    2. I don't change diapers, feed patients, transfer patients, give baths, or perform what are commonly known as "CNA duties".
    3. I administer medications and treatments, report changes in condition, dress wounds, verify orders, perform CPR during codes, operate wound vacuums, flush PICC lines, keep G-tubes patent, chart, do assessments, and a whole host of other duties.
    4. I posess a state-issued nursing license and am responsible for maintaining it. CNAs are not licensed.

    The CNAs are very important to the healthcare team, but I am not one. Please click on the links below to learn the objective differences.

    LPN duties and job outlook
    CNA duties and outlook

    A nurse of any barring license degree or education, that does not or will not meet their patients needs..... is pretty much not meeting their patients..... I can't do a skin assessment, if resident dirty..... my cnas are bust..... real nurses meet all patient needs ...
  10. by   SeasonedTech
    Don't think for a minute that just because you're an LPN that you don't have to change diapers. Everybody on staff does it, even my manager! As a CNA I do just about everything except start IV's, blood infusions& insert foleys. We can even pass meds.
  11. by   cayenne06
    When needed, even us APRNs change briefs and do personal care, help patients to the toilet, fetch ice chips, all that stuff. It is *always* part of your job to make sure a patient is clean, comfortable, and as content as possible. But yes, if you are lucky enough to work with a CNA, they do the majority because LPNs and RNs have their own job responsibilities.



    *Please* don't call them diapers unless they are being worn by a baby/toddler.
  12. by   SeasonedTech
    You're right..... I'm sorry.....Briefs, Attends..... etc not diapers
  13. by   cduenes41
    Quote from sallyrnrrt
    A nurse of any barring license degree or education, that does not or will not meet their patients needs..... is pretty much not meeting their patients..... I can't do a skin assessment, if resident dirty..... my cnas are bust..... real nurses meet all patient needs ...
    I'm sorry, but heh?

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