How to Enroll In the Best Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Program near Brook Highland Alabama
Once you have decided on a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it's essential that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college near Brook Highland AL that will provide the proper training. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, apart from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their functions do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the next section. When initiating their search for schools, many potential nursing students start with those that are the closest to their houses or that are the least expensive. Even though cost and location are relevant factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other concerns, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important also. There are even more questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN course that we will cover later in this article. But first, let's take a look at the function of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
What does an LPN or LVN Do?
Licensed Practical Nurses have many different tasks that they perform in the Brook Highland AL medical facilities where they work. As their titles signify, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Alabama. Although they may be responsible for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves typically work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The medical facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter patients seeking medical attention is their dominion. Every state not only controls their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can't perform. So based on the state, their everyday work activities may include:
- Taking vital signs
- Giving medicines
- Starting IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Assisting doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their work duties being mandated by each state, the health facilities or other Brook Highland AL healthcare providers where LPNs work can additionally limit their job roles within those parameters. In addition, they can work in various specialties of nursing, which include long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN ProgramsThere are basically two scholastic credentials offered that provide instruction to become an LPN near Brook Highland AL. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time period, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The second alternative is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from supplying a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the course of study adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Online LPN and LVN Programs
Enrolling in LPN schools online is becoming a more popular way to get training and acquire a nursing certificate or degree in Brook Highland AL. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating approach to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And a large number of online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your work and family obligations have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online LPN program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Things to Ask LPN and LVN ProgramsNow that you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near Brook Highland AL as well as within Alabama and throughout the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school and the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the certificate program in addition to the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping verify that you receive a premium education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited schools near Brook Highland AL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's essential that the school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Alabama or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Additionally, check with the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some nearby Brook Highland AL healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the LPN programs you are considering what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to finish their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It's also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Brook Highland AL medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with local Brook Highland AL community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Choose the Best Brook Highland Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Training
Picking the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse program is perhaps the most critical step to launching a new career in the medical care industry. There are a number of variables that you need to think about when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have pointed out within this content, it is essential that you enroll in an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become an LPN or LVN in Brook Highland AL.