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How to Select the Best LPN or LVN Program near Peoria Arizona

Peoria Arizona LVN with older woman patientOnce you have chosen a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it's imperative that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program near Peoria AZ that will provide the proper 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 healthcare facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their responsibilities do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will cover in the next section. When beginning their search for schools, many prospective nursing students start with the ones that are the closest to their houses or that are the least costly. While price and location are important points to consider, 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 as well. There are various other questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN program that we will address later in this article. But first, let's look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the training and licensing process.

What is an LPN or LVN?

Peoria Arizona LPN greeting man with crutches at door

Licensed Practical Nurses have many different functions that they accomplish in the Peoria AZ health facilities where they are employed. As their titles signify, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. While they may be accountable for managing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the oversight of either an RN or a doctor. The medical facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, such as hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter patients requiring medical assistance is their dominion. Every state not only oversees their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can't perform. So based on the state, their day-to-day work functions can include:

    • Checking vital signs
    • Giving medications
    • Starting IV drips
    • Observing patients
    • Getting blood or urine samples
    • Taking care of patient records
    • Supporting doctors or RNs with procedures

Along with their job duties being regulated by each state, the health facilities or other Peoria AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. Also, they can practice in various specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.

LPN Programs

There are basically two scholastic credentials offered that provide education to become an LPN near Peoria AZ. The one that may be completed in the shortest period of time, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.

LPN and LVN Programs Online

Peoria Arizona LPN with senior male assisted living patientEnrolling in LPN programs online is emerging as a more preferred way to receive training and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Peoria AZ. Many schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating approach to finding the time to attend school for some students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And numerous online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your work and family responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online LPN training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.

Questions to Ask LPN and LVN Schools

Once you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Peoria AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we earlier pointed out, the location of the school as well as the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick 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 acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to helping confirm that you receive a premium education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools near Peoria 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) along 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 imperative that the school you are attending not only provides an excellent 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 services to see what the assessments are for each of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Also, contact the Arizona school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Peoria 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 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 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 Peoria AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain a position.
  • Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Peoria AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.

Find Out More About Peoria LVN or LPN Training

Choose the Best Peoria Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Training

Enrolling in the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse school is arguably the most important step to beginning a new career in the healthcare field. There are a number of aspects that you must consider when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and financial status. As we have pointed out in this post, it is important that you choose an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Peoria AZ.



 

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