How to Find the Right Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Course near Casa Grande Arizona
Now that you have chosen a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it's essential that you find a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near Casa Grande AZ that will deliver the necessary instruction. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, other than the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their responsibilities do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will talk about in the next segment. When starting their search for schools, many potential nursing students begin with the ones that are the nearest to their residences or that are the least expensive. Even though tuition and location are relevant points to consider, they are not the only criteria that you should base your selection on. Other concerns, such as 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 discuss later in this article. But first, let's take 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 duties that they carry out in the Casa Grande AZ healthcare facilities where they work. As their titles signify, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. While they may be accountable for monitoring Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can find patients seeking medical care is their dominion. Each 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 activities may include:
- Taking vital signs
- Giving medications
- Starting IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Managing patient records
- Assisting doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their occupational responsibilities being governed by each state, the healthcare facilities or other Casa Grande AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can additionally limit their job duties within those parameters. Also, they can work in various specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN CoursesThere are generally two scholastic credentials available that provide education to become an LPN near Casa Grande AZ. The one that can be concluded in the shortest time frame, generally about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The second choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and typically require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides 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 kind 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 attests that the syllabus properly 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 programs online is becoming a more preferred way to receive training and attain a nursing certificate or degree in Casa Grande AZ. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a specified amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating answer to finding the time to attend college for some students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And numerous online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your job and household obligations have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online LPN training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask LPN and LVN SchoolsOnce you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges near Casa Grande AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school as well as the cost of tuition are probably going to be the first two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your pick measures up to the other programs.
- 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 obtain a quality education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools near Casa Grande AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for LPNs are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's important that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, check with the Arizona school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some nearby Casa Grande AZ 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 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a good reputation within the Casa Grande AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Ask if the schools have associations with nearby Casa Grande AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Pick the Right Casa Grande Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Program
Picking the right Licensed Practical Nurse program is arguably the most crucial step to beginning a new career in the healthcare field. There are numerous aspects that you need to take into account when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have highlighted within this post, it is critical that you pick an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Casa Grande AZ.