How to Find the Right LPN or LVN Course near Centerville Iowa
Once you have chosen a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it's essential that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program near Centerville IA that will provide the right 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, except for the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their functions do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will talk about in the next section. When beginning their search for schools, many future nursing students begin with those that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least costly. Although tuition and location are relevant points to consider, they are not the only criteria that you should base your selection on. Other variables, for example 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 potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN program 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 education and licensing process.
What is an LPN or LVN?
Licensed Practical Nurses have many different functions that they carry out in the Centerville IA health care facilities where they are employed. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Iowa. Although they may be responsible 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, for instance hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can find patients requiring medical attention is their dominion. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can't perform. So depending on the state, their routine work functions can include:
- Taking vital signs
- Giving medicines
- Initiating IV drips
- Observing patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Helping doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their work responsibilities being controlled by each state, the healthcare facilities or other Centerville IA healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Also, they can practice in different specialties of nursing, which include long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN TrainingThere are basically two scholastic credentials available that provide instruction to become an LPN near Centerville IA. The one that can be finished in the shortest period of time, normally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd option is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from supplying 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 kind of credential you seek, it needs to 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 course of study properly 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 Schools
Enrolling in LPN schools online is growing into a more in demand way to receive instruction and acquire a nursing certificate or degree in Centerville IA. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a specific amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical answer to finding the free time to attend school for some students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your work and family obligations have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online LPN training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask LPN and LVN ProgramsNow that you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Centerville IA as well as within Iowa and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school and the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the first two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other programs.
- 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. Besides helping verify that you obtain an excellent education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools near Centerville IA.
- 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) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Many 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 enrolled in not only delivers a top-notch education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Iowa or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the LPN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. In addition, get in touch with the Iowa school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some nearby Centerville IA 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 important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a superb reputation within the Centerville IA medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing also. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Centerville IA community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Choose the Best Centerville Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Program
Deciding on the right Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most important step to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are various factors that you should consider when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and financial status. As we have stressed within this article, it is important that you pick an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care 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 an LPN or LVN in Centerville IA.