How to Enroll In the Right LPN or LVN School near Bisbee Arizona
Now that you have chosen a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it's essential that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program near Bisbee AZ that will furnish the necessary 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 undertake the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the supervision 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 prospective nursing students begin with the ones that are the closest to their residences or that are the least costly. Although cost and location are important factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other variables, such as if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely 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 to start with, let's have a look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
What is an LPN or LVN?
Licensed Practical Nurses have a number of duties that they perform in the Bisbee AZ health care facilities where they practice. As their titles indicate, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. Even though they may be accountable for managing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The healthcare facilities where they work are numerous and varied, for instance hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can encounter patients in need of medical assistance is their dominion. Every state not only controls their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can't perform. So depending on the state, their day-to-day work functions might include:
- Taking vital signs
- Administering medications
- Starting IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Assisting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
In addition to their job duties being mandated by each state, the health care facilities or other Bisbee AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. Also, they can practice in different specialties of nursing, for example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN ProgramsThere are generally two academic credentials offered that provide education to become an LPN near Bisbee AZ. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time period, usually about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The other choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with supplying a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it should 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 course of study adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
LPN and LVN Programs Online
Enrolling in LPN programs online is growing into a more in demand way to obtain training and attain a nursing certificate or degree in Bisbee AZ. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating approach to finding the free time to attend college for many students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. And so if your job and family commitments have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online LPN program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask LPN and LVN ProgramsNow that you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following pointers to start narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Bisbee AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously discussed, the location of the school and the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two things that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your selection compares 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 agency. In addition to helping make sure that you get a premium education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited schools near Bisbee AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for LPNs differ 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. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's essential that the school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Additionally, check with the Arizona school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some nearby Bisbee AZ 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 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 displeased with the program and dropped out. It's also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a favorable reputation within the Bisbee AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Check if the schools have associations with local Bisbee AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Choose the Right Bisbee Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Training
Picking the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse school is arguably the most important phase to beginning a new career in the health care field. There are numerous variables that you must take into account when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have pointed out in this article, it is critical that you enroll in an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist 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 proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Bisbee AZ.