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Your Guide to LPN Salary in Illinois [2024]

Licensed practical nurses, here is your guide to LPN salary in Illinois. Discover the average salary for LPNs, the typical range of wages within the state, the cost of living in Illinois, LPN employment statistics, and more.

Locate your area in the table below to find the average LPN wage per hour and year that most closely represents your earning potential in Illinois.

Area LPN Hourly Mean Wage Annual Mean Wage
Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI $30.01 $57,240
Kankakee, IL $27.52 $57,190
Rockford, IL $27.50 $56,890
Decatur, IL $27.35 $55,770
Bloomington, IL $26.81 $55,730
Danville, IL $26.80 $55,350
Champaign-Urbana, IL $26.61 $55,270
Peoria, IL $26.57 $54,650
Northwest Illinois nonmetropolitan area $26.28 $54,650
West Central Illinois nonmetropolitan area $26.28 $54,200
St. Louis, MO-IL $26.06 $52,850
East Central Illinois nonmetropolitan area $25.41 $52,220
Springfield, IL $25.11 $52,180
Davenport-Moline-Rock Island, IA-IL $25.09 $51,300
South Illinois nonmetropolitan area $24.66 $48,940
Carbondale-Marion, IL $23.53 $45,560
Cape Girardeau, MO-IL $21.91 $45,560

This resource provides publicly available information from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the MIT Living Wage Calculator about average LPN salaries, employment, location quotient, and living wage in Illinois (most recent information as of March 2024). While Nursa currently offers independent contractor LPNs in Illinois the opportunity to access per diem jobs that pay on an hourly basis rather than access to salaried or wage-based employment opportunities, this information may be a helpful frame of reference for you as you assess the market landscape both in regard to per diem jobs and employment opportunities.

How Much Do Nurses Make in Illinois?

LPN pay in Illinois can vary drastically from one area of the state to another. As shown in the table, LPN salary in Illinois can be more than $8 higher per hour in Chicago than in Cape Girardeau. Annually, LPN pay can vary by nearly $17,000 between these two areas.

Additionally, LPN income largely depends on the type of healthcare facility. For example, licensed practical nurses tend to earn higher wages in outpatient care centers and skilled nursing facilities than in hospitals or offices of physicians. 

What’s the Average LPN Salary in the State of Illinois?

Although Illinois is not among the highest-paying states for LPNs, the mean practical nurse wage in this state is higher than the national average. Whereas the national average is $26.86 per hour and $55,860 per year, the average in Illinois is $28.29 hourly and $58,840 annually.

That said, as mentioned, LPN pay can differ due to numerous factors. The following percentiles show the typical range of LPN wages in Illinois:

  • 10th percentile: $47,490
  • 25th percentile: $51,090
  • 50th percentile: $59,310
  • 75th percentile: $63,780
  • 90th percentile: $72,230

These percentiles indicate that 50 percent of licensed practical nurses earn up to $59,310, and 50 percent make more than this amount. Similarly, 10 percent of LPNs earn up to $47,490 annually, 90 percent make more, and so on.

What Is the Cost of Living in Illinois?

Knowing how much you can earn in Illinois may help you choose the best option when considering independent contractor work or applying for salaried or wage-based employment. Likewise, understanding the cost of living in this state can help you budget, save, and manage your finances overall. 

The following table shows the average living wage required for different types of households in Illinois. The living wage is an estimated amount individuals must earn per hour working full-time to cover basic living expenses.

How Many Children No Children One Child Two Children Three Children
Single Adult $22.86 $39.63 $50.71 $64.15
Two Adults (One Working) $31.28 $36.49 $41.16 $43.99
Two Working Adults (Living Wage per Adult) $15.64 $22.12 $27.88 $31.69

Although the average LPN salary in Illinois is sufficient for most single adults and dual-income households, more is typically needed for single-income households with dependents. If the latter is your case, you must find ways to supplement your income. An excellent way to increase your hourly pay in Illinois is through per diem LPN jobs.

LPN putting money in pocket of scrubs.
LPNs can pocket more money with PRN shifts.

What Are Per Diem LPN Jobs?

Per diem nursing jobs are single-shift contracts. In other words, healthcare facilities contract LPNs, registered nurses (RNs), and certified nursing assistants (CNAs) one shift at a time to cover gaps in clinician coverage. Due to the nursing shortage and high nurse turnover rates, nurses are in high demand, and facilities often need LPNs to cover shifts short-term until facilities are able to hire full-time employees. Facilities may also need to contract LPNs short-term while employees are on vacation, maternity leave, etc. 

Per diem or PRN jobs are advantageous for both healthcare facilities and clinicians. PRN nursing jobs allow facilities to maintain safe nurse-to-patient ratios. At the same time, these jobs allow PRN nurses to make competitive hourly pay and maintain flexibility.

How Can I Find PRN LPN Shifts in Illinois? 

Licensed practical nurses in Illinois can pick up per diem shifts with Nursa. Nursa is an open healthcare marketplace through which facilities can post available shifts, and LPNs can request the shifts that interest them. This platform is free for clinicians and offers LPNs interested in working per diem the opportunity to decide when and where to work and when to take time off to focus on other interests and responsibilities. Find per diem jobs near you by clicking on the links below.

The Chicago-Naperville-Joliet, IL Metropolitan Division is the highest-paying area in Illinois and encompasses Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, McHenry, and Will counties. Click on the links below to find per diem LPN jobs near you:

Cook County

DuPage County

Will County

Grundy County

Kane County

The Rockford Statistical Area in northern Illinois is the third highest-paying area in the state and includes Winnebago and Boone counties. Find LPN shifts in these counties below:

Winnebago County

The Decatur Statistical Area is the fourth highest-paying area in Illinois for LPNs and encompasses Macon County. Discover LPN jobs in the city of Decatur

The Champaign-Urbana Metropolitan Area includes Champaign, Piatt, and Ford counties. Find PRN nursing shifts in this area below:

Champaign County

Greater St. Louis is a metropolitan statistical area that covers parts of Missouri and Illinois. It includes the Illinois counties of Bond, Calhoun, Clinton, Jersey, Macoupin, Madison, Monroe, and St. Clair, collectively referred to as the Metro East. Here are cities with PRN nursing shifts in these counties:

Macoupin County

Madison County

St. Claire County

The Lake County-Kenosha County, IL-WI Metropolitan Division, includes the Illinois county of Lake. Find cities in Lake County with PRN shifts for LPNs:

Lake County

The Davenport-Moline-Rock Island, IA-IL Metropolitan Statistical Area encompasses the Illinois counties of Henry, Mercer, and Rock Island. Browse LPN shifts in these Illinois counties:

Rock Island County

Mercer County

Find PRN practical nursing shifts in the Peoria Metropolitan Area.

Tazewell County

Peoria County

Also, find high-paying per diem LPN shifts in the following micropolitan areas:

LPNs in West Central Illinois can find per diem jobs in Rushville, Schuyler County.

a river with colorful trees
If you are an LPN looking for PRN jobs in Illinois, Nursa connects you with high-paying PRN jobs throughout the state.

How Can I Become an LPN in Illinois? 

As with any profession, completing an educational program is the first step to becoming a licensed practical nurse. Illinois offers LPN programs in various settings, including nursing schools, community colleges, and Private Business and Vocational Schools (PBVS). You can review a list of LPN programs approved by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) and the Illinois State Board of Nursing (ISBN) here.

After completing a practical nursing program, candidates must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN) to obtain a license through acceptance of the examination. However, if an LPN already has licensure from another state, they may apply for Illinois licensure through endorsement. You can find detailed application requirements for your particular situation here.

Additionally, LPNs must fulfill state-specific requirements to maintain their licenses active, including the completion of continuing education units (CEUs). You can check the status of your Illinois LPN license through the IDFPR’s license verification portal.

Although LPNs are vital in healthcare settings and many LPNs stay in this role their entire careers, becoming a licensed practical nurse need not be the end of the professional road. LPNs in Illinois can continue their studies through LPN-to-RN bridge programs to increase their knowledge and income.

LPN Employment Statistics for Illinois

There are 17,530 licensed practical nurses employed in Illinois, or 2.98 LPNs per 1,000 jobs. This concentration of LPNs is significantly lower than the national average. Whereas the national average concentration—or location quotient—of licensed practical nurses equals one, the location quotient in Illinois is 0.70.

Work as an Independent Contractor LPN in Illinois

Now, you have a frame of reference for your potential salary as an employed LPN in Illinois. You have also learned about the benefits of working as an independent contractor LPN. Both of these career options are bright and offer a wide range of job opportunities. In fact, there is no need to choose one or the other. If you are new to PRN nursing shifts, you can test out this work model by picking up a nursing shift with Nursa. Browse shifts available on days you have off from work to determine whether this career option fits you. Once you get a taste of the high hourly rates and control over your schedule, you may decide to work per diem full-time. 


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