How to Select an LPN Training Program near Northway Alaska
There are basically two academic credentials available that provide education to become an LPN near Northway AK. The one that may be concluded in the shortest period of time, typically about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and usually require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you seek, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
What is an LPN?
Licensed Practical Nurses have many different tasks that they complete in the Northway AK health care facilities where they are employed. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Alaska. While 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 facilities where they work are numerous and varied, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can find patients seeking medical care is their dominion. Every state not only oversees their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their day-to-day work functions may include:
- Checking vital signs
- Administering medicines
- Initiating IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Helping doctors or RNs with procedures
In addition to their job functions being governed by each state, the medical facilities or other Northway AK healthcare providers where LPNs work can additionally limit their job roles within those parameters. Additionally, they can practice in various specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN) was $45,030 in May 2017. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $32,970, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $61,030. Most licensed practical nurses near Northway AK work full time, although about 1 in 5 worked part time in 2016. Many work nights, weekends, and holidays, because medical care takes place at all hours. They may be required to work shifts of longer than 8 hours. Employment of LPNs is projected to grow 12 percent from 2016 to 2026. Job prospects should be favorable for LPNs who are willing to work in rural and medically under served areas.
LPN Programs Online
Attending LPN schools online is emerging as a more preferred way to obtain training and attain a nursing certificate or degree in Northway AK. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical answer to finding the free time to attend classes for some students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your work and household obligations have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online LPN training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Things to Ask LPN Programs
Now that you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, as well as if you will attend classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges near Northway AK as well as within Alaska and throughout the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school along with the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up to the other programs.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the certificate program as well as the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping confirm that you obtain a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools near Northway AK.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for LPNs are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Many 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 a top-notch education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Additionally, get in touch with the Alaska school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Northway AK healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the LPN programs you are looking at 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a good reputation within the Northway AK healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get 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. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with local Northway AK community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Enrolling in an LPN Program near Northway AK?
If you are considering enrolling in and attending an LPN school near Northway AK, you may find the following information both interesting and useful when making your final decision.
Northway (K’ehtthiign in Upper Tanana Athabascan) is a census-designated place (CDP) in Southeast Fairbanks Census Area, Alaska, United States. The population was 71 at the 2010 census, down from 95 in 2000.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 20.9 square miles (54 km2), of which, 19.2 square miles (50 km2) of it is land and 1.8 square miles (4.7 km2) of it (8.45%) is water.
The highest sea-level pressure in North America was recorded at Northway on January 31, 1989 with a reading of 31.85 inches, a record only surpassed by two readings in Siberia. Due to aircraft altimeters only being able to calibrate to 31 inches, most were grounded.
Enroll in the Right LPN School near Northway AK
Deciding on the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse school is probably the most crucial step to starting a new career in the medical care field. There are various factors that you should consider when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have pointed out within this content, it is critical that you choose an LPN school and a 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 produce a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Northway AK.
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