In order to practice as a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) in Alberta, you must have a valid practice permit from the College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta (CLPNA).

The practice of practical nursing can occur in a variety of roles and settings. It is important to note that the practice of practical nursing is not the same as being employed as a practical nurse because a job title may not reflect the roles and responsibilities of a practical nurse.

The CLPNA provides the following self-assessment tool to help you determine if your role is within the practice of practical nursing in Alberta. Completing this self-assessment tool will help you demonstrate whether your LPN’s role is considered practical nursing according to Alberta’s Health Professions Act and the CLPNA’s policies, and therefore that time could be used as practice hours on the CLPNA’s Registration Renewal form or for the Continuing Competence Program.

You do not need to send the CLPNA your self-assessment unless requested during an audit for the Continuing Competence Program. 
What is the Practice of Practical Nursing?

Practical nursing services are outlined in Schedule 10 of the Health Professions Act (HPA). Section 3 of Schedule 10 provides the following scope of practice statement:

In their practice, licensed practical nurses do one or more of the following:

(a) apply nursing knowledge, skills and judgment to assess patient needs,
(b) provide nursing care for patients and families,
(b.1) teach, manage and conduct research in the science, techniques and practice of nursing, and
(c) provide restricted activities authorized by the regulations.[i]

Practical nursing services encompass both clinical nursing practice and/or roles in administration, management, education, and research.

The CLPNA defines “practice hours” as the “hours providing practical nursing services to non-family members”. The CLPNA’s Policy: Actively Engaged Requirements for Registration and the Continuing Competence Program outlines practice hour requirements for active registration as part of the Continuing Competence Program.
Am I Practicing Practical Nursing?

Reflect on your current role or position in Alberta. Answer the following yes/no questions based on how each question applies to your current role.

These questions will help you determine whether your role is considered practical nursing and may be considered valid for practice hours requirements for Registration Renewal or for the Continuing Competence Program.

Question Title

* Nursing Assessments: Can you answer YES to AT LEAST ONE (1) of the following?:
  1. Do you assess patient healthcare needs (e.g. physical, social, emotional, psychological, or spiritual)?
  2. Do you assess the delivery of safe, ethical, and competent nursing care?
  3. Do you assess policies and procedures related to nursing practice?
  4. Do you assess the formal or informal educational needs of patients, families, students, LPNs, or the public regarding nursing practice?