How to Enroll In the Best Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Classes near Marana Arizona
Once you have decided on a fulfilling vocation in the field of nursing, it's important that you find a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near Marana AZ that will provide the right 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, except for the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their functions do differ 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 begin with the ones that are the closest to their homes or that are the least expensive. While tuition and location are significant factors, they are not the only qualifications 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 very important too. There are additional questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN training program that we will talk about later in this article. But to start with, let's look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
What is an LPN or LVN?
Licensed Practical Nurses have many different duties that they complete in the Marana AZ health care facilities where they work. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. While they may be responsible for monitoring Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The health care facilities where they work are numerous and varied, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can find patients seeking medical treatment is their dominion. Every state not only oversees their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can't perform. So based on the state, their routine work functions may include:
- Taking vital signs
- Giving medications
- Starting IV drips
- Observing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Managing patient records
- Helping doctors or RNs with procedures
Along with their job duties being governed by each state, the health facilities or other Marana AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. Also, they can practice in various specialties of nursing, for example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN CoursesThere are basically two scholastic credentials available that provide instruction to become an LPN near Marana AZ. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time period, typically about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The second choice is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
LPN and LVN Programs Online
Enrolling in LPN schools online is growing into a more preferred way to get training and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Marana AZ. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating approach to finding the time to attend classes for some students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can 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 family commitments have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online LPN school will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Things 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 online, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Marana AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier pointed out, the location of the school as well as the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two things that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the other schools.
- 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 recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping ensure that you receive a premium education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited schools near Marana AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's imperative that the school you are attending not only provides a top-notch education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. In addition, check with the Arizona school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Marana 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 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 Marana AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with local Marana AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Choose the Best Marana Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Program
Enrolling in the right Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most important phase to launching a new career in the medical care industry. There are many aspects that you must think about when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have stressed in this post, it is important that you choose an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Marana AZ.