How to Select the Right Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing School near Moores Mill Alabama
Now that you have chosen a fulfilling career in the field of nursing, it's important that you find a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college near Moores Mill AL that will furnish the right education. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, apart from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in medical 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 beginning their search for schools, many prospective nursing students start with those that are the nearest to their residences or that are the least expensive. While price and location are relevant points to consider, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other factors, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important too. There are additional questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN course that we will address later in this article. But first, let's have a look at the function of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
What does an LPN or LVN Do?
Licensed Practical Nurses have a number of functions that they complete in the Moores Mill AL health facilities where they are employed. As their titles imply, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Alabama. Although they may be accountable for monitoring Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anyplace that you can encounter patients in need of medical attention is their dominion. Each state not only controls their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can't perform. So based on the state, their everyday job functions may include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Providing medications
- Setting up IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Supporting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
In addition to their work responsibilities being mandated by each state, the health facilities or other Moores Mill AL healthcare providers where LPNs work can additionally limit their job duties within those parameters. Additionally, they can work in various specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN Certificates and DegreesThere are basically two academic credentials available that provide education to become an LPN near Moores Mill AL. The one that may be completed in the shortest time frame, normally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The next alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and commonly require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with supplying a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you seek, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
LPN and LVN Online Schools
Enrolling in LPN schools online is becoming a more favored way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Moores Mill AL. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical approach to finding the time to attend school for many students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your work and family responsibilities have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online LPN training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask LPN and LVN ProgramsNow that you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, as well as 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 no doubt are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Moores Mill AL as well as within Alabama and throughout the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier mentioned, the location of the school and the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two things that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the field.
- 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 agency. Aside from helping confirm that you receive a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools near Moores Mill AL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for LPNs are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's imperative that the school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the reviews are for all of the LPN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Additionally, check with the Alabama school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Moores Mill AL healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgements are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the LPN schools you are looking at what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. It's also essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a favorable reputation within the Moores Mill AL medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best 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 mandates for licensing also. Check if the schools have a working relationship with local Moores Mill AL community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Pick the Right Moores Mill Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Training
Picking the right Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most critical first step to launching a new career in the healthcare field. There are many factors that you need to take into account when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have stressed in this content, it is important that you enroll in an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Moores Mill AL.