Median pay for Licensed Vocational Nurses in the United States is around $20.70 per hour. Earnings for this group are mostly affected by the company, followed by geography and tenure. Slightly less than a third of professionals in this line of work do not receive benefits; however, a majority report medical coverage and a little over a half claim dental coverage as well. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. Licensed Vocational Nurses who responded to the questionnaire are largely women, dominating at 90 percent. The data for this snapshot was collected from individuals who took PayScale's salary survey.

$30,274 - $59,621
$30K
$43K
$60K
MEDIAN: $43,131
10%
50%
90%

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$16.37 - $26.48
$16
$21
$26
MEDIAN: $20
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$20K$40K$60K
Salary
$30,274 - $59,621  
   
Bonus
$204.26 - $3,074  
Profit Sharing
$1,500  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$34,087 - $57,454  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jan 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 646
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$13$26$39
Hourly Rate
$16.37 - $26.48  
   
Hourly Tips
$2.31  
Overtime
$22.07 - $38.90  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$26K$52K$78K
Bonus
$204.26 - $3,074  
   
Profit Sharing
$1,500  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$34,087 - $57,454  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jan 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 5,034

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Job Description for Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN)

Nurses are an essential part of the medical practice, and without them, proper recovery and acclimation to medical environments can be difficult. The duty of a licensed vocational nurse is to help patients prepare for treatment and assist in their recovery. To do this, licensed vocational nurses will be required to talk to patients and doctors, review medical documentation, report and document any changes in a patient's medical conditions, and monitor a patient's health during his or her stay. To become licensed, a licensed vocational nurse must take a state exam in the state in which he or she practices. A licensed vocational nurse must also have graduated from an accredited vocational nursing program. This can be done at a vocational school or at a college. In addition to a formal education, licensed vocational nurses must be good at working with people and comfortable providing care when it is needed.

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Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) Tasks

  • Provide nursing care to patients under the supervision of RNs or other medical professionals.
  • Prepare patients for exams or procedures.
  • Prepare and maintain equipment and supplies.
  • Observe and chart patient condition.
  • Administer prescribed medications.

Common Career Paths for Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN)


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For Licensed Vocational Nurses, progressing to a Director of Nursing role may result in a significant raise. On average, a Director of Nursing can earn $80K annually. More often than not, a Registered Nurse role is the next step for Licensed Vocational Nurses moving up in the field. Registered Nurses usually make $56K per year. Many other Licensed Vocational Nurses choose to take on a Licensed Practical or Licensed Vocational Nurse role, where salaries are typically $40K.

Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN)


Dominating the field, Maxim Healthcare Services, Kaiser Permanente, DaVita Inc., Maxim, and Kindred Healthcare are top firms with a reputation for hiring a great number of Licensed Vocational Nurses. Kaiser Permanente offers the largest salaries in town ($58K on average), but the considerable range in workers' salaries creates a rather varied pay scale that stretches from $37K to $72K. Sharp Healthcare, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, and Genesis HealthCare are a few other companies that offer generous salaries, with Licensed Vocational Nurses earning around $52K, $50K, or $49K at each firm, respectively.

Pay for Licensed Vocational Nurses is the lowest at Maxim Healthcare Services, which has a median salary of $37K. In addition, there's little room to grow there, with salaries maxing out at $51K. Maxim, Scott & White Hospital and Clinic, and University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) also scrape the bottom of the pay scale, with median earnings hovering around $37K, $41K, and $41K.

Popular Skills for Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN)


Survey takers working as Licensed Vocational Nurses report using a large range of professional skills. Most notably, skills in Quality Improvement / QA, Hospice, Wound Care, and Geriatrics are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 5 percent and 9 percent. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Family Practice and Pediatrics. Most people experienced in Elder Care also know Home Health/Home Care and Acute Care.

Pay by Experience Level for Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN)

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


For Licensed Vocational Nurses, experience does not seem to be a major factor in determining pay. Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $42K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $46K on average — a distinctly larger sum. The average pay reported by folks with 10 to 20 years of experience is around $47K. Individuals who have achieved more than 20 years of experience don't seem to earn much more than people who have 10 to 20 years under their belts; the more senior group reports an average income of $48K.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $43,946

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

Licensed Vocational Nurses in San Francisco, Sacramento, and San Diego — all located in California — not only make more than the national average for those in this profession but represent the highest-paid cities in the country for Licensed Vocational Nurses. Those in the field find the lowest salaries in Victoria, 18 percent below the national average. A couple other locations with smaller-than-average paychecks include Riverside (9 percent lower) and Tyler (7 percent lower).

Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) Reviews

Q: What is it like working as a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) at University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB)?

Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) in Beaumont:
"Working in Correctional Managed Care."
Pros: The up side of working for UTMB on the Correctional Managed Care side is the benefits that are offered. In talking with other nurses that work for other entities, I have found that UTMB offers the best Insurances, health, dental and vision, best retirement, as well as the most paid holidays.
Cons: The down side of working for UTMB on the Correctional Managed Care side is the fact that we get our funding through the state of Texas so if Legislature decides we don't need a raise, we don't get one. I have worked for this company for almost ten years and make barely more than any of the new hires who came have less experience than I do. Working with and around offenders is not easy and is high stress and there is no way to get a raise unless you go back to school and get another degree (which sometimes, the pay increase vs how much is put out on school, does not make it worthwhile). I would have to lose my position w. That I am very good at and love very much to get a very small increase in pay so again, just not worth the trouble.

Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) in Dallas:
"Steady work, predictable health problems."
Pros: Some days require very light work, more assessing than action.
Cons: Long hours.

Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) in Santa Barbara:
"Wonderful and rewarding, but current facility is horrible."
Pros: Patient care and satisfaction. Making a difference in others lives.
Cons: Lack of patient safety and care, poor poor management. My patients deserve better, I want leave but love my patients that deserve the best care.

Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) in Alvin:
"The Full Experience."
Pros: Helping improve peoples health one issue at a time, giving people information to improve their health and well being, educating the public on health concerns and options.
Cons: Often unappreciated, often abused (verbally, emotionally, occasionally physically), physically exhausting (long hours on feet and lifting), long hours and odd schedules lead to few quality hours of time with family and few options to work "normal" schedules (M-F 8-5), often work weekends and holidays (with no pay increase), few health benefits offered, saturated field makes it a very competitive job market with fewer options (LVNs being phased out by hospitals and other practices for MAs and RNs), stress level.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN)

Gender

Female
90 %
Male
10 %

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 484 votes.
Less than 1 year
9%
1-4 years
40%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
19%
20 years or more
12%
Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) Salaries




National Average
$44,000


Skills That Affect Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) Salaries

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 484 votes.

Gender

Female
90 %
Male
10 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
9%
1-4 years
40%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
19%
20 years or more
12%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 66%
dental benefits
Dental: 53%
vision benefits
Vision: 47%
dental benefits
None: 31%
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