How to Find the Right Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Program near Fortuna Foothills Arizona
Now that you have decided on a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it's imperative that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near Fortuna Foothills AZ that will provide the necessary 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, except for the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in health care 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 look at in the following segment. When starting their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with those that are the closest to their residences or that are the least expensive. Even though cost and location are relevant considerations, they are not the only criteria that you should base your selection on. Other factors, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important as well. There are even more questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN program that we will cover later in this article. But first, let's take a look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
What does an LPN or LVN Do?
Licensed Practical Nurses have numerous functions that they complete in the Fortuna Foothills AZ healthcare facilities where they are employed. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. Even though they may be responsible for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally 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 find patients in need of medical assistance is their domain. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can't perform. So depending on the state, their routine job activities can include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Administering medicines
- Setting up IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Helping doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
In addition to their work responsibilities being governed by each state, the health facilities or other Fortuna Foothills AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. In addition, they can practice in numerous specialties of nursing, for example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN ProgramsThere are principally two scholastic credentials available that provide training to become an LPN near Fortuna Foothills AZ. The one that may be finished in the shortest period of time, normally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The second alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and usually require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from offering a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum effectively 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 Programs
Attending LPN schools online is growing into a more in demand way to obtain training and attain a nursing certificate or degree in Fortuna Foothills AZ. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend school for many students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And a large number of online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your job and household commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online LPN program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
What to Ask LPN and LVN ProgramsOnce you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following pointers to start narrowing down your options. As you no doubt realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near Fortuna Foothills AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school along with the price of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two things that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the field.
- 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. Aside from helping verify that you get a premium education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools near Fortuna Foothills AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for LPNs vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, 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 nearby Fortuna Foothills 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 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 substantiate that the school has a favorable reputation within the Fortuna Foothills AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with local Fortuna Foothills AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Choose the Best Fortuna Foothills Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Program
Deciding on the right Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most critical step to beginning a new career in the health care field. There are many factors that you must think about when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have stressed in this content, it is essential that you choose an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Fortuna Foothills AZ.