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Call 310-hire


Practical Nursing Access Program

This full-time program prepares graduates to provide nursing care in partnership with other health care professionals. Graduates will be able to care for selected clients chosen on the basis of acuity and complexity in a variety of settings.

This full-time diploma program was initiated in response to the need for recognizing past education, training and work experience of applicants to the Practical Nursing program. If applicants have achieved certification in the following programs: Health Care Assistant (HCA) or Resident Care Attendant (RCA) or a combined Home Support/Resident Care Attendant (HS/RCA) they may be admitted to the access semester of the Practical Nursing program.

Please note: it is intended that this Access to Practical Nursing curriculum is used in conjunction with the Practical Nursing Provincial Curriculum (2012). The first level of the Access to PN Curriculum was adapted from the Practical Nursing Provincial Curriculum (2012). An in-depth comparison of the Health Care Assistant Provincial Curriculum (2008) and the Practical Nursing Provincial Curriculum (2012) and identification of the curriculum gaps resulting from this comparison has led to the development of this Access curriculum. The other levels are the same as courses in the Practical Nursing Provincial Curriculum (2012).

Licensed Practical Nurses in BC provide nursing services to patients and their families across the lifespan in a variety of hospital, community, residential and home care environments working as an integral part of the health team in collaboration with Physicians, RNs and RPNs. LPNs practice nursing using their knowledge, skills, judgment, critical thinking and problem solving to provide safe, competent and ethical care.

Comprehensive patient assessments serve as the basis for developing individual nursing care plans. As a Practical Nurse and valued member of the primary healthcare team you are qualified to:

  • Provide nursing care in the acute, geriatric and home care settings
  • Assess and monitor patients in various healthcare settings
  • Assist clients with activities of daily living such as personal care
  • Administer medication to patients and monitor their effectiveness
  • Document assessments and report progress
  • Perform examinations in consultation with doctors, registered nurses and therapists
  • Educate patients and family regarding health-related issues
  • Advocate for clients
  • Assist in rehabilitation activities
  • Be a team leader and assign care to unregulated care providers

On completion of this program graduates will:

1. Apply the Entry to Practice Competencies for Licensed Practical Nurses (2013) to provide safe, competent and ethical nursing care to clients across the lifespan
2. Practice within current legislation, Scope of Practice Standards (2014), Practice Standards, and Professional Standards for Licensed Practical Nurses (May 2014)
3. Value and engage in continuous learning to maintain and enhance competence
4. Practice in collaboration with other members of the health care team to meet the collective needs of their clients
5.Participate in interprofessional problem solving and decision making processes
6. Advocate for and facilitate change reflecting evidence-informed practice
7. Make practice decisions that are client specific and consider client acuity, complexity, variability, and available resources
8. Use critical thinking, clinical judgement and knowledge of assessment to plan, implement, and evaluate the agreed upon care of plan
9. Develop a collaborative relationship with clients by connecting, sharing, and exploring with them in a caring environment
10. Provide culturally safe, person-centered care across the lifespan that recognizes and respects the uniqueness of each individual and is sensitive to cultural safety and diversity
11. Provide leadership, direction, assignment and supervision of unregulated care providers as  appropriate
12. Identify own values, biases and assumptions and the influence of these on interactions with clients and other members of the health care team

Applicants with English as an additional language must meet the language requirements set by the College of Licensed Practical Nurses of BC (CLPNBC) and be successful in one of the following: (subject to change, consistent with CLPNBC requirements) International English Language Testing System (IELTS) – Academic Version, Canadian English Language Benchmarks Assessment for Nurses (CELBAN);

Portfolio containing: English Essay, Resume, Two letters of Reference, Up-to-date Immunizations (Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Polio, Chicken Pox, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Hepatitis B, Influenza and others as required by clinical sites), TB test; Criminal Record Check (Solicitor General Level); Physicians Waiver.

Other Specifications
Basic word processing and computer skills are required; a caring attitude and a sincere interest in the well-being of people are essential; foundational courses in Mathematics, Biology, Psychology and Sociology are an asset; flexible and adaptable work/life schedule to accommodate for clinical experience shift work; healthcare related work/volunteer experience strongly recommended; must be able to cope with the emotional aspects of working with the sick, injured and terminally ill. Note: CPR / First Aid will be completed.

Clinical / Preceptorship
Clinical / Preceptorship may include any shifts other than day shift (i.e. evenings — 3 to 11 pm or nights — 11 pm to 7 am and possible weekends).
Students may be required to work 12-hour shifts during the clinical and / or preceptorship.
Students are responsible for their own transportation to and from clinical / preceptorship sites.
Clinical / Preceptorship are conducted over 7.5 to 12 hours per day to meet required hours as set out by CLPNBC.
Clinical / Preceptorship sites are subject to availability.
Clinical / Preceptorship sites may require more current and/or additional CRC (for instance: RCMP) and TB testing (to be done at student’s expense), or other requirements to be completed prior to starting.

Biology, English and Math Upgrade Courses

We offer Biology, English and Math upgrade courses needed for the Practical Nursing program. The cost of this upgrade will be credited to your account once you have been accepted as a Practical Nursing student at Sprott Shaw College. Speak with a Career Advisor for more details.


Becoming a Licensed Practical Nurse in Canada: Requisite Skills and Abilities document

Professional Standards

Entry to Practice Competencies for Licensed Practical Nurses (2013)

Scope of Practice: Standards, Limits and Conditions

Practice Standards