How to Find the Best LPN or LVN Training near Douglas Arizona
Now that you have decided on a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it's essential that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program near Douglas AZ that will provide the proper instruction. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, other than the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their functions do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the following section. When beginning their search for schools, many potential nursing students start with those that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least expensive. While tuition and location are significant points to consider, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other variables, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important also. There are additional questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN training program that we will address later in this article. But to start with, let's take a look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
What does an LPN or LVN Do?
Licensed Practical Nurses have numerous duties that they accomplish in the Douglas AZ healthcare facilities where they practice. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. Even though they may be responsible for managing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The medical facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can find patients seeking medical treatment is their domain. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can't perform. So depending on the state, their day-to-day job activities may include:
- Checking vital signs
- Administering medications
- Initiating IV drips
- Observing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Managing patient records
- Helping doctors or RNs with procedures
In addition to their occupational responsibilities being controlled by each state, the health facilities or other Douglas AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. Also, they can work in numerous specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN TrainingThere are generally two academic credentials offered that provide education to become an LPN near Douglas AZ. The one that may be completed in the shortest period of time, usually about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next alternative 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 complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to offering a higher credential and more comprehensive 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 attests that the course of study 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
Attending LPN schools online is becoming a more preferred way to get instruction and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Douglas AZ. Some schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating answer to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your work and family commitments have left you with limited 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 active schedule.
Things to Ask LPN and LVN ProgramsOnce you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or online, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Douglas AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we earlier pointed out, the location of the school as well as the price of tuition are probably going to be the initial two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your pick measures up to the field.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the certificate program along with the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping ensure that you get a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited schools near Douglas AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) along 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 important that the school you are enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the assessments are for each of the LPN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, check with the Arizona school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Douglas 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 complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were dissatisfied 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 Douglas AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Find out if the schools have associations with nearby Douglas AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Pick the Best Douglas Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Program
Choosing the right Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most crucial first step to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are numerous variables that you must consider when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have emphasized within this content, it is essential that you pick an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate 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 Douglas AZ.