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State of Washington Classified Job Specification


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Class Code: 286A
Category: Health Care

Class Series Concept

Performs practical nursing care including the administration of medication and assists in carrying out selected aspects of the designated nursing regimen. Within the scope of licensed practice, performs practical nursing care tasks, participates in patient or resident care planning, assists with and performs therapeutic and diagnostic procedures, reports and records observations of patients or residents, assists in maintaining an optimum physical and emotional environment, and assists a registered nurse in more complex situations.


This is the entry level of the series. Provides practical nursing services in a hospital, school, or other treatment and care facility. Participates as a member of the health care team, providing selected direct patient or resident care, and assistance with various patient or resident care services,




Within a Division of Mental Health psychiatric treatment facility, provides practical nursing services for mentally ill patients or residents.

Typical Work

Attends to the general care of patients or residents, provides for their emotional and physical comfort and safety, and maintains an attractive and comfortable environment; gives assistance and guidance in cleanliness, grooming, rest, activities, and nourishment;


Prepares and cares for patients or residents receiving specialized treatments administered by the physician or the professional nurse; performs selected nursing procedures;


Cares for patients or residents with communicable diseases including necessary sterilization and observation of aseptic techniques; preparation and aftercare of treatment and administration of oral, subcutaneous, and intramuscular medications under the supervision of the professional nurse;


Encourages patients or residents in group or individual recreational, social, or related activities;


Observes, records, and reports the general condition of patient or residents;


Provides care to assigned patients or residents utilizing the current treatment plan;


Administers oral, subcutaneous, intramuscular, and rectal medications under the supervision of the professional nurse;


Provides direct nursing care to patients or residents such as pre-operative and post-operative instructions, assists patients or residents toward self-care and with activities of daily living, and instructs patients or residents about their illnesses;


Initiates and participates in clinical emergencies such as cardiopulmonary resuscitation, Code 199, and other medical and psychiatric emergencies;


Prepares patients or residents for and performs selected diagnostic/laboratory/therapeutic procedures, or measures, including assembly of sterile tray/instruments and maintenance of sterile field, minor surgical procedures, catheterization, wound irrigation, electrocardiograms, guaiac tests, blood glucose monitoring, and oxygen therapy;


Administers and documents oral, topical, intramuscular, some intravenous piggyback, subcutaneous, nasogastric medications and suppositories per physician order; performs venipuncture for obtaining blood specimens; discontinues intravenous needles and intracatheters;


Performs telephone triage; follows standardized protocol(s) to provide information; documents phone call in the medical record;


Provides input for the development and maintenance of nursing care plans;


Monitors equipment while in use; maintains equipment and requests repairs;


Acts as a liaison between the patient or resident and physician;


May order supplies and medications;


May check and sterilize instruments;


Performs other duties as required.

Legal Requirement(s)

Possession of a current Washington State license to practice as a Licensed Practical Nurse.


There may be instances where individual positions must have additional licenses or certification. It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure the appropriate licenses/certifications are obtained for each position. 

Persons legally authorized to work in the U.S. under federal law, including Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients, are eligible for employment unless prohibited by other state or federal law.

Desirable Qualifications

Possession of a current Washington State license to practice as a Licensed Practical Nurse.

Class Specification History

New class effective June 1, 2005; Licensed Practical Nurse 1 (replaces 56500 Licensed Practical Nurse 1, 56680 Mental Health Licensed Practical Nurse 2, 6246 Licensed Practical Nurse).

Salary adjustment, revisions to the class series concept, definition and typical work; adopted June 30, 2017 effective July 1, 2017.

Revised Legal Requirements; effective June 6, 2024, due to adopted legislative action.