IV Therapy Certification for Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs)

IV therapy is the administration of fluids, blood, and medicine directly into a vein through a needle. Certification courses prepare students who did not receive specialized IV therapy training during their nursing education.

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Essential Information

IV therapy certification for licensed practical nurses (LPNs) prepares nurses to administer fluids through an IV. Each state has its own regulations regarding the authorization of LPNs to conduct IV therapy. Some states require a special training course leading to certification. Most applicants are currently employed in the nursing field. Employers may offer these courses or sponsor the individual. Attendees must usually complete a course of self-study, which may include an examination prior to the course. Certification courses are usually 1-2 days in length.

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IV Therapy Certification for LPN's

Most IV therapy certification courses have a pre-study curriculum in conjunction with classroom training, which is usually developed to meet individual state nursing standards. Such standards may regulate what types of IV therapy LPNs may provide, as well as in what setting. For example, some states allow LPNs to provide IV therapy in hospitals, but not in home care settings. Employers may offer these courses or sponsor the individual. Attendees must usually complete a course of self-study, which may include an examination prior to the course. There is also hands-on training utilizing mannequins. Course topics include the following:

  • Medication administration and infection control
  • Central line use
  • Patient assessment
  • TPN therapy
  • Electrolytes
  • Blood and plasma

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), licensed practical and licensed vocational nurse employment were expected to grow at a rate of 16% between the years of 2014-2024 (www.bls.gov). A large part of this growth is due to the aging population in the United States. Salaries vary widely depending upon the state; the mean wage for a LPN in West Virginia was $35,680, while a LPN in California could expect to earn $51,870. Overall, the median annual salary for LPNs was $43,170, according to May 2015 data.

Continuing Education

LPNs may pursue a career as a registered nurse (RN) with additional education. Such programs generally require enrollment in an associate degree program and may take up to two years to complete. RN programs are available in the classroom and online. A RN may obtain further training in IV therapy and become an infusion specialist.

IV therapy certification for LPNs gives nurses additional training in topics such as medication administration, patient assessment, and TPN therapy, which can augment skills learned during nursing education.

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