How to Find the Best Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Classes near Rincon Valley Arizona
Now that you have decided on a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it's important that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college near Rincon Valley AZ that will deliver the necessary instruction. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, other than the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their duties do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the next section. When beginning their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with those that are the closest to their houses or that are the least expensive. While tuition and location are relevant factors, they are not the only criteria that you should base your selection on. Other variables, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important too. There are additional questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN course that we will discuss later in this article. But to start with, let's have a look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the training and licensing process.
What is an LPN or LVN?
Licensed Practical Nurses have many tasks that they carry out in the Rincon Valley AZ health facilities where they are employed. As their titles imply, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. Even though they may be accountable for supervising 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 assorted, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can find patients seeking medical attention is their dominion. Each state not only oversees their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can't perform. So based on the state, their daily job functions can include:
- Taking vital signs
- Providing medications
- Setting up IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Supporting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
In addition to their occupational duties being mandated by each state, the healthcare facilities or other Rincon Valley AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. Additionally, they can practice in different specialties of nursing, for instance long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN TrainingThere are basically two academic credentials offered that provide instruction to become an LPN near Rincon Valley AZ. The one that may be completed in the shortest time period, typically about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The next alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and typically require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
LPN and LVN Online Programs
Attending LPN programs online is emerging as a more popular way to receive training and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Rincon Valley AZ. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a specific amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating approach to finding the time to attend school for many students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. And so if your work and household commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online LPN school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Questions to Ask LPN and LVN SchoolsNow that you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or online, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Rincon Valley AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we already discussed, the site of the school along with the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two things that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares 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 recognized accrediting agency. In addition to helping confirm that you get a premium education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited schools near Rincon Valley AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a certain 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 outstanding education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the assessments are for each of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Additionally, check with the Arizona school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Rincon Valley 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a superb reputation within the Rincon Valley AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Rincon Valley AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Pick the Best Rincon Valley Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Program
Deciding on the right Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most crucial step to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are a number of aspects that you should take into account when selecting a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic 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 both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list 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 right degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Rincon Valley AZ.