Licensed practical nurses (LPNs) are important providers of hands-on patient care and crucial links in the chain of healthcare teams. If you’re looking to hire LPNs, you’ll review their credentials, qualifications and experience. But, as in any caring profession, it’s important to look for personal qualities that can separate excellent LPNs from so-so providers.
Here are five of the most important qualities an LPN should demonstrate.
Good nurses are organized nurses, and LPNs are no exception. Although nurses receive patients’ plans and requests, they should be proactive about organizing their day. Signs of a “to-do” list or schedule are indicators of good organization.
It’s important to be understanding with patients and their families. Patients may not understand their symptoms or be frightened of them and need extra time and care. Their families also may show signs of confusion or fear. An LPN can allay fears and stress by being patient.
Patience may also be needed with certain age groups. Older people, for example, may take longer to communicate with, or may require more time to move and process information. LPNs looking after children also need to be patient.
Nurses must to be able to demonstrate compassion and empathy to patients and family members. They need to be genuinely concerned about the progress and prognosis of their patients. If an LPN isn’t caring, the quality of care can be impacted.
It’s important to be sensitive to the different lifestyles and mindsets patients can have. Different cultures may handle illness and treatment very differently than others. Good LPNs should be able to work with all types of people without judgment.
Remember, LPNs don’t work only with patients. They are part of a larger healthcare team, including nurses, nursing assistants, physical therapists, home healthcare aides and more. As a result, good LPNs will be team players. They should be proactive and helpful in the performance of their duties. They shouldn’t do just enough to get by, and they shouldn’t be territorial.
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