How to Find the Right LPN or LVN School near Fortuna Foothills Arizona
Once you have chosen a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it's imperative that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near Fortuna Foothills AZ that will provide the appropriate education. If you reside 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 healthcare facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their duties do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the next segment. When initiating their search for schools, many potential nursing students begin with those that are the nearest to their residences or that are the least costly. Even though tuition and location are relevant factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other variables, such as if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important too. There are various other questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN course 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 training and licensing process.
What does an LPN or LVN Do?
Licensed Practical Nurses have numerous tasks that they carry out in the Fortuna Foothills AZ health facilities where they practice. As their titles signify, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. Even though they may be accountable for managing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can find patients seeking medical care is their domain. Each state not only regulates their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can't perform. So based on the state, their daily job activities may include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Giving medications
- Setting up IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Supporting physicians or RNs with procedures
Along with their occupational functions being controlled by each state, the health care 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, including long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN Certificates and DegreesThere are essentially two academic credentials offered that provide instruction to become an LPN near Fortuna Foothills AZ. The one that may be finished in the shortest period of time, typically about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The other choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to offering a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they furnish 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 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.
LPN and LVN Programs Online
Attending LPN schools online is becoming a more preferred way to receive instruction and attain a nursing certificate or degree in Fortuna Foothills AZ. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend school for some students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your job and household responsibilities have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online LPN school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask LPN and LVN ProgramsNow that 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 begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Fortuna Foothills AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we already mentioned, the site of the school along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final decision, 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 along with the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping make sure that you get an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools near Fortuna Foothills AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for LPNs vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) together 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 enrolled in not only delivers an outstanding education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the reviews are for all of the LPN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. 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 Fortuna Foothills 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 confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Fortuna Foothills AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain employment.
- 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 specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Check if the schools have associations with local Fortuna Foothills AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Pick the Right Fortuna Foothills Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Program
Selecting the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse school is arguably the most critical first step to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are numerous variables that you must take into account when picking a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have highlighted within this content, it is essential that you pick an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Fortuna Foothills AZ.