Vocational Nursing (LVN)
Current Practice & Scope of Practice

Current Practice

The licensure and practice of vocational nurses is authorized by the California Business and Professions Code and regulated by the Board of Vocational Nurse and Psychiatric Technicians (BVNPT). The licensed vocational nurse (LVN) is a health professional that provides care for patients in a variety of health care settings. Typically, the LVN is employed in the following types of facilities.

  • Acute Care Hospitals
  • Skilled Nursing or Long-Term Care Facilities
  • Home Health Agencies
  • Community Health Centers
  • Surgery Centers
  • Physicians' Offices
  • Correctional Facilities

Upon completion of additional specialized training, LVNs may also be employed in specialty care areas, such as Intravenous Therapy Teams, Critical Care Units, Telemetry Units, Hemodialysis Units, Gastroenterology Laboratories and Genitourinary Laboratories.


Scope of Practice

Under the direction of a physician or a registered nurse, the LVN utilizes scientific and technical expertise and manual skills to provide nursing care to assigned patients.

Duties within the scope of practice of the LVN typically include, but are not limited to, the provision of basic hygienic and nursing care; measurement of temperature, pulse, respirations and blood pressure; basic assessment; documentation of data; performance of prescribed medical treatments; nursing interventions; observation and documentation of patient responses to treatments and interventions; participation in the development of nursing care plans; administration and documentation of prescribed medications; performance of skin testing; patient education; and performance of non-medicated intravenous therapy (requires separate Board certification) and blood withdrawal (requires separate Board certification). 

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