South Dakota has a growing number of opportunities in the nursing field. Within the state, LPNs make up 16% of nurses in the state. The South Dakota LPN comfort score is 59. This takes into account the average LPN salary, average state salary and cost of living. The South Dakota RN comfort score is greatly increased 94. The difference between the two illustrates that obtaining an RN degree in this state is considered highly worthwhile. South Dakota nursing schools and universities can provide more information that can help you pursue either degree.
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Checklist to become a South Dakota LPN:
- Earn your LPN Degree, 1 year of courses and hands-on practice.
- Apply for licensure with the South Dakota Board of Nursing – Have your school send your transcript to them as well
- Obtain a CPR card and pass the NCLEX-PN exam
LPN Salaries in South Dakota
Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN) in South Dakota earn an average of $16.06/hr and a yearly income of $33,390. Nurses working in metropolitan areas tend to earn higher salaries than in non-metropolitan parts of the state, although there is likely to be a relatively higher cost of living in those areas. An LPN can work in a variety of areas within the nursing field including nursing care facilities, hospitals or a physicians’ office. Nurses working in general medical and surgical hospitals typically earn more than those working in the offices of physicians. Also, nurses make more per hour when shifts are at night or during weekends and holidays. When choosing a career path within the industry, salary is only one piece to consider. Many LPNs find a more rewarding career in a family office rather than a hospital, despite a lower salary. It is advisable for LPNs to look towards home health care agencies and long-term care facilities are the fastest growing potential employers. The LPN with several years of experience and those with certifications in geriatric health are going to be in higher demand. It is crucial to begin trying to figure out which area is the best fit for you as early as possible. Take advantage of all the offered LPN programs in South Dakota and educate yourself by researching all the available options before deciding.
LPN Degree and Education in South Dakota
In the state of South Dakota, the practical nursing program is the quickest route to becoming a nurse. To earn a degree requires one year of courses as well as hands-on practice. You are required to obtain a CPR card, and pass the NCLEX-PN exam upon completion of the LPN course. With any questions about LPN schools in South Dakota and specific requirements, contact the admissions office of your chosen college or school.
South Dakota licensed RNs and LPNs are required to renew their licenses every two years. Both RNs and LPNs must complete one out of two requirements. These include, 140 practice hours during any twelve-month period within the past six years or four hundred and eighty total practice hours within the past six years.
South Dakota LPN Job Outlook
The nursing shortage in The United States is steadily increasing. There is a rising demand for new and more effective health procedures and life expectancy averages are continuing to climb. These issues will be reflected in the South Dakota health industry and help to create an extremely strong job outlook for LPNs. It is estimated that at least 120 additional nursing graduates each year will be needed to meet the nursing shortage in the state. South Dakota hospitals, home health companies and doctor offices are now offering flexible schedules, educational benefits, higher pay and other incentives to retain their staff and to recruit new nurses. Some hospitals are even offering sign on bonuses or student loan reimbursement up to certain maximums.
The comfort score of 59 for South Dakota LPNs ranks near the bottom as far as the national scores. The cost of living, however, is also on the lower end. Obtaining an RN degree will increase the score to 94 and would be considered a worthwhile investment. A career as an LPN in this state can provide opportunities and security.
The South Dakota State Board of Nursing Website can be found here.