How to Select the Right LPN or LVN Training near El Mirage Arizona
Now that you have chosen a fulfilling vocation in the field of nursing, it's essential that you find a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college near El Mirage AZ that will deliver the necessary training. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, other than the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their responsibilities do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will cover in the following segment. When initiating their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with those that are the closest to their houses or that are the least costly. While tuition and location are important factors, 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 extremely important too. There are additional questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN program that we will cover later in this article. But to start with, let's take a look at the function 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 functions that they perform in the El Mirage AZ health facilities where they are employed. As their titles indicate, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. While they may be accountable for monitoring Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves typically work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The health care facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, such as hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can encounter patients seeking medical treatment is their dominion. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can't perform. So based on the state, their daily work functions can include:
- Taking vital signs
- Administering medicines
- Setting up IV drips
- Observing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Assisting physicians or RNs with procedures
In addition to their occupational responsibilities being mandated by each state, the healthcare facilities or other El Mirage AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. In addition, they can work in numerous specialties of nursing, including long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN TrainingThere are generally two academic credentials available that provide training to become an LPN near El Mirage AZ. The one that can be completed in the shortest time period, commonly about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from providing a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Online LPN and LVN Schools
Enrolling in LPN programs online is growing into a more preferred way to receive training and attain a nursing certificate or degree in El Mirage AZ. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs require a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend school for many students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. And so if your work and family commitments have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online LPN program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
What to Ask LPN and LVN SchoolsOnce you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, as well as if you will attend classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following pointers to start narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges near El Mirage AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school as well as the price of tuition are probably 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 schools.
- 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. Besides helping verify that you get an excellent education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited schools near El Mirage AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs vary 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. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's essential that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, get in touch with the Arizona school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some local El Mirage AZ 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 complete 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 verify that the school has a good reputation within the El Mirage AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain 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. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Find out if the schools have associations with nearby El Mirage AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Pick the Best El Mirage Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Training
Selecting the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse program is arguably the most important step to starting a new career in the healthcare industry. There are numerous aspects that you must consider when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have emphasized within this post, it is important that you pick an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become an LPN or LVN in El Mirage AZ.