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How to Pick the Right LPN or LVN Training Program near Centerville Iowa

Centerville Iowa LPN with older female patientOnce you have decided on a fulfilling vocation in the field of nursing, it's imperative that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program near Centerville IA that will provide the appropriate instruction. 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 medical facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their responsibilities do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the next section. When starting their search for schools, many future nursing students begin with the ones that are the nearest to their homes or that are the least costly. While cost and location are important points to consider, they are not the only criteria that you should base your selection on. Other factors, such as 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 prospective schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN training program that we will talk about later in this article. But first, let's look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.

What does an LPN or LVN Do?

Centerville Iowa LVN greeting patient with crutches at door

Licensed Practical Nurses have a number of functions that they perform in the Centerville IA healthcare facilities where they are employed. As their titles signify, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Iowa. Although they may be responsible for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves typically work under the supervision 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. Virtually any place that you can encounter patients seeking medical attention is their domain. Each state not only regulates their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can't perform. So depending on the state, their day-to-day work activities might include:

    • Checking vital signs
    • Providing medicines
    • Setting up IV drips
    • Overseeing patients
    • Getting blood or urine samples
    • Taking care of patient records
    • Assisting doctors or Registered nurses with procedures

Along with their occupational duties being mandated by each state, the healthcare facilities or other Centerville IA healthcare providers where LPNs work can additionally 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.

LVN and LPN Courses

There are essentially two academic credentials offered that provide training to become an LPN near Centerville IA. The one that can be concluded in the shortest amount of time, normally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd choice is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and commonly require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides 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 seek, 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 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.

LPN and LVN Programs Online

Centerville Iowa LVN with older male assisted living patientEnrolling in LPN schools online is emerging as a more popular way to receive training and attain a nursing certificate or degree in Centerville IA. Many schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more practical answer to finding the free time to attend school for many students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. And so if your job and household responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online LPN program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.

Questions to Ask LPN and LVN Programs

Once you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, as well as if you will attend classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Centerville IA as well as within Iowa and throughout the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school and the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up to the field.
 
  • 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. In addition to helping verify that you receive an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited schools near Centerville IA.
  • Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for LPNs are different 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. Many states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's important that the school you are enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Iowa or the state where you will be working.
  • Reputation. Look at online 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, get in touch with the Iowa school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with 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 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 dissatisfied 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 good reputation within the Centerville IA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain a position.
  • Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with nearby Centerville IA community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.

Learn More About Centerville LVN or LPN Nursing Programs

Choose the Best Centerville Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Training

Picking the right Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most crucial phase to launching a new career in the medical care field. There are a number of variables that you need to consider when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have stressed in this content, it is critical that you select an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Centerville IA.



 

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