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Career Profile: Licensed Practical Nurse

Career Profile: Licensed Practical Nurse

Carlos Camacho, LPN, 20 Riverside Regional Medical Center, Newport News VA Licensed Practical Nurse

Dept. of Labor, Career Voyages, In Demand: Careers in Health Care

How did you get interested in nursing?

Actually I started out in radiology, but I realized right away it wasn’t for me. I didn’t want to start over, and my mom suggested nursing because there are so many areas to specialize in within the field. So I switched to the LPN program at Riverside Regional Medical Center. I liked it immediately, so I knew it was the right move.

What do you do in your job?

I work on the orthopedic unit. My duties include taking vital signs, changing dressings, pass out meds, giving massages, and assisting doctors as they treat patients. I also help ortho patients with physical therapy. For example, I may go with a patient as he walks around the floor to increase his strength. Or I might teach a patient how to do theraputic exercises in bed.

What training did you get for your job?

I completed an 11-month program that included classroom instruction, lab work and ongoing clinical rotations. In the labs, I worked with dummy patients and classmates who pretended to be patients.

What are your goals for the future?

Currently, I’m working on becoming a registered nurse. After that, I plan to get a bachelor’s degree in nursing. Eventually I plan to get my master’s degree in anesthesia because I’d like to specialize as a nurse anesthestist.

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