How to Select the Right Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Program near Flowing Wells Arizona
Once you have decided on a fulfilling vocation in the field of nursing, it's essential that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college near Flowing Wells AZ that will furnish the necessary training. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, apart from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their responsibilities do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will cover in the following segment. When starting their search for schools, many future nursing students start with those that are the closest to their houses or that are the least expensive. Although cost and location are important considerations, they are not the only criteria that you should base your decision on. Other variables, for example 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 course that we will address later in this article. But to start with, let's have a look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the training and licensing process.
What does an LPN or LVN Do?
Licensed Practical Nurses have a number of tasks that they accomplish in the Flowing Wells AZ healthcare facilities where they practice. As their titles imply, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. While they may be responsible for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter patients in need of medical attention is their domain. Each state not only controls their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can't perform. So depending on the state, their everyday job activities can include:
- Checking vital signs
- Giving medications
- Starting IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Helping physicians or RNs with procedures
Along with their occupational duties being mandated by each state, the healthcare facilities or other Flowing Wells AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. Additionally, they can work in numerous specialties of nursing, for example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN CoursesThere are generally two scholastic credentials available that provide instruction to become an LPN near Flowing Wells AZ. The one that may be concluded in the shortest period of time, commonly about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The next choice is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides supplying 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 pursue, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
LPN and LVN Online Schools
Attending LPN programs online is emerging as a more preferred way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Flowing Wells AZ. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more practical answer to finding the free time to attend school for some students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your work and household obligations have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online LPN school will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions 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 web, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near Flowing Wells AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier pointed out, the site of the school and the price of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final choice, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. Aside from helping verify that you obtain an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools near Flowing Wells AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed 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 essential that the school you are attending not only delivers an exceptional education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. In addition, get in touch with the Arizona school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Flowing Wells 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 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 imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the Flowing Wells AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with local Flowing Wells AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Pick the Right Flowing Wells Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Program
Deciding on the right Licensed Practical Nurse school is probably the most critical phase to launching a new career in the healthcare field. There are numerous factors that you should consider when picking a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have pointed out in this post, it is essential that you enroll in an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical 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 appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Flowing Wells AZ.