Why Are LPNs in Such High Demand?
During your quest to become a Licensed Practical Nurse, or LPN, you may have heard over and over again that there is a high demand for these professionals all over the country. The good thing is, it's true. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has stated that a career as an LPN will grow by as much as 16 percent until the year 2024.
Now, you may be wondering just why LPNs are in such high demand today. What are the contributing factors of this overwhelming demand? There are actually many factors that have contributed to the high demand for trained LPNs these days. Five of the main reasons are explained below.
Aging Baby Boomers
Of all the generational groups living today, Baby Boomers are by far the largest. This group consists of persons who were born between the years 1946 and 1964. Today, Baby Boomers are anywhere between 51 and 70 years old. As people in this group entered their senior years, they placed quite a strain on medical facilities all across the country. As a result, more nursing professionals are needed to help relieve this strain.
Increased Healthcare Demand
Another factor that has resulted in a high demand for LPNs is an increased demand for quality healthcare. There are basically two reasons leading to an increased demand for quality healthcare today: aging Baby Boomers and a more health-conscious society. Not only are there more elderly persons requiring healthcare these days, but more and more people are recognizing the need for regular checkups and health screenings.
Shift in Service Methods
A shift in service methods has also led to an ever-increasing need for trained LPNs. RNs and LPNs today are responsible for many more tasks than ever before. In fact, nursing professionals are often the first, and in some cases, the only, medical professionals patients see when visiting a medical facility.
Furthermore, with more and more chronically ill patients choosing to receive medical care in their own homes or in hospice care centers, there is a growing need for LPNs and other nursing professionals to provide care in these new environments. The best thing about this is that as Baby Boomers continue to age, this need will only continue to grow.
Retiring Nursing Professionals
Just as Baby Boomers are coming of age, many nursing professionals are also coming of age and choosing to retire. This includes not only registered nurses and nurse practitioners, but licensed practical nurses and certified nursing assistants as well. As these nursing professionals come of age and retire, they leave a large variety of nursing positions open to LPN graduates and LPNs seeking new employment.
Open Nursing Positions
Finally, another factor leading to a high demand for LPNs today is the increase of open nursing positions in medical facilities across the country. As licensed practical nurses choose to move up the career ladder and become registered nurses, new positions are left open for LPN graduates or existing LPNs seeking new positions.