Licensed Practical Nurses

(NOC 3233)

in All Health

Licensed practical nurses provide nursing care usually under the direction of medical practitioners, registered nurses, or other health team members. Operating room technicians prepare patients and help medical practitioners prior to and during surgery. They work for hospitals, nursing homes, extended care facilities, rehabilitation centres, doctors' offices, clinics, companies, private homes, and community health centres. Operating room technicians work in hospitals.

Job Outlook

Good

Read more

  • Estimate Moderate growth employment change, 2021-2023
  • Estimate 250 openings due to growth and retirements, 2021-2023
  • Estimate Low rate of unemployment in 2022

Compared to: All Health

  • Estimate 3550 employment change, 2021-2023
  • Estimate 6335 openings due to growth and retirements, 2021-2023
  • Estimate rate of unemployment not available for these occupation.

The employment outlook over the next few years for this occupational group is “good”, which indicates the chances of a qualified individual finding work is better than average when compared to other occupations in Nova Scotia. This is a fairly large occupation in Nova Scotia, with employment around 2,400. The number employed in this occupation is expected to grow significantly over the next few years, which will provide additional opportunities for employment. With a moderate percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are expected to contribute somewhat to employment opportunities over the coming years. Licensed Practical Nurses most commonly work full-time hours. Furthermore, the jobs are typically permanent positions. Also, a large percentage of the workforce is self-employed, which should be an important consideration for those thinking about employment in the occupation.

This is a large occupation and opportunities arise frequently as people change positions. Demand for health care workers has been especially strong in recent years. The work can be physically-challenging, often with less than regular hours or involving shift work, which may contribute to turnover. The role of the licensed practical nurse (LPN) has broadened and includes a wider range of duties in the face of limited budgets. While hospitals employ a large number of LPNs, opportunities have become more plentiful in nursing homes and through providers of home care, as the health care system shifts toward alternative care for people with chronic illnesses and disabling conditions. Applicants should have little trouble finding work.

Hourly Pay

$23.75

Minimum

$26.00

Median

$27.54

Maximum

Annual Pay

$20,753

Minimum

$48,961

Median

$59,834

Maximum

Compared to: All Health

Hourly Pay

$16.70

Minimum

$26.60

Median

$43.30

Maximum

Annual Pay

$10,740

Minimum

$43,853

Median

$88,944

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

Licensed practical nurses provide nursing care usually under the direction of medical practitioners, registered nurses, or other health team members. Operating room technicians prepare patients and help medical practitioners prior to and during surgery. They work for hospitals, nursing homes, extended care facilities, rehabilitation centres, doctors' offices, clinics, companies, private homes, and community health centres. Operating room technicians work in hospitals.

Job duties

Licensed practical nurses:

  • Provide nursing services to patients based on patient assessment and care planning procedures.
  • Complete nursing interventions like taking vital signs, applying aseptic techniques including sterile dressing, ensuring infection control, monitoring nutritional intake and conducting specimen collection.
  • Administer medication and observe and document therapeutic effects.
  • Provide pre-operative and post-operative personal and comfort care.
  • Monitor established respiratory therapy and intravenous therapy.
  • Monitor patients, evaluate effectiveness of nursing interventions, and consult with appropriate members of healthcare team.
  • Provide safety and health education to individuals and their families.

Operating room technicians:

  • Prepare patients for surgery by washing, shaving, and sterilizing the patients' operative areas.
  • Help in surgery by laying out instruments, setting up equipment, helping surgical teams with gowns and gloves and passing instruments to surgeons.
  • Clean and sterilize the operating room and instruments.

Sample job titles

  • certified nursing assistant (CNA)
  • graduate nursing assistant
  • licensed nursing assistant
  • licensed practical nurse (L.P.N.)
  • operating room technician
  • registered nursing assistant (R.N.A.)
  • registered practical nurse (R.P.N.)
  • surgical assistant, nursing
  • surgical technician - nursing

Skills

  • Individuals entering this profession should enjoy caring for people of all ages. Good communication skills and interpersonal skills are also very important. Physical demands include moving and lifting others, and spending long periods of time on one's feet. LPNs must be able to cope with stress and occasional emergency situations.

Job requirements

  • A vocational, college, or other approved program for licensed practical nurses is required.
  • Registration with a regulatory body is required in Nova Scotia.
  • Completion of the Canadian Practical Nurse Registration Examination is required in Nova Scotia.
  • Operating room technicians require either additional academic training in operating room techniques or on-the-job training.

Other considerations

  • Shift-work is typical in this profession. Changes in the healthcare delivery system in Nova Scotia may affect job opportunities in these jobs as well as the location and type of workplace employing these workers. Growth will occur in other healthcare organizations that provide community-based healthcare and home care.

By the numbers

Quick look

2,900

employed in 2016

77.2%

employed full-time

1.2%

self employed

93.3%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
6.7%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
43.6

median age

Compared to: All Health

36,515

employed in 2016

75.7%

employed full-time

9.6%

self employed

83.6%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
16.4%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
43.5

median age

Where will I likely work?

31.3%

Halifax

$47,430 median annual income
24.6%

Cape Breton

$50,335 median annual income
17.4%

North Shore

$46,863 median annual income
13.9%

Annapolis Valley

$48,498 median annual income
12.7%

Southern

$49,836 median annual income

Compared to: All NS Occupations

47.0%

Halifax

15.6%

North Shore

12.9%

Annapolis Valley

12.7%

Cape Breton

11.8%

Southern

Top Industries of Employment

97.6%

Health care and social assistance

0.9%

Public administration

0.4%

Retail trade

0.4%

Educational services

0.4%

Other services (except public administration)

What is the age of Employment?

27.0%

35-44

24.0%

25-34

23.0%

45-54

21.0%

55-64

3.0%

65+

3.0%

15-24

Compared to: All Health

24.0%

25-34

23.9%

45-54

21.9%

35-44

18.4%

55-64

7.7%

15-24

Top levels of education

78.1%

College Diploma

$49,603 median annual income
9.3%

Bachelor

$46,156 median annual income
7.2%

Trade Certification

$43,674 median annual income
3.3%

Diploma Below Bachelor

$48,755 median annual income
1.7%

High school

$34,713 median annual income

Compared to: All Health

38.4%

College Diploma

$40,033 median annual income
27.1%

Bachelor

$61,668 median annual income
8.7%

Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary, Optometry

$81,191 median annual income
6.8%

High school

$24,829 median annual income
5.1%

Master

$69,296 median annual income

Education & training

Licensed Practical Nurse Training (LPN, LVN, Cert., Dipl., AAS)

College or Trades Program

These programs prepare students to help provide general nursing care under the direction of a registered nurse, physician or dentist. They include courses in taking patient vital signs, applying sterile dressings, patient health education and assistance with examinations and treatment.

Institutions providing this program

Universite Sainte-Anne

Pointe-de-l'Église, NS

Nova Scotia Community College

Various, NS

Employment requirements & contacts

Regulations

Licenced Practical Nurse

Right to Title and Practice: This job is regulated. The job title is protected, and you may not use it without a professional licence. A licence shows that the holder has met provincial requirements and is required to legally do this work.

Regulating body:
Nova Scotia College of Nursing
Bedford, NS

Contacts

Health Care Human Resource Sector Council
Bedford, NS
Nova Scotia Nurses Union
Dartmouth, NS