How to Select the Right LPN or LVN Program Near Helena Alabama
Now that you have chosen a fulfilling vocation in the field of nursing, it's important that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college near Helena AL that will furnish the proper training. 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 healthcare facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their duties do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will talk about in the next section. When initiating their search for schools, many future nursing students begin with those that are the closest to their homes or that are the least expensive. While cost and location are relevant factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other factors, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important as well. Let's take a look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
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Job Duties of an LPN or LVN
Licensed Practical Nurses have a number of functions that they complete in the Helena AL healthcare facilities where they work. As their titles signify, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Alabama. While they may be responsible for monitoring Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves typically work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The healthcare facilities where they work are numerous and varied, such as hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter patients seeking medical attention is their domain. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can't perform. So based on the state, their day-to-day work activities can include:
- Checking vital signs
- Giving medications
- Starting IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Helping physicians or RNs with procedures
Along with their work duties being controlled by each state, the health facilities or other Helena AL healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. Additionally, they can work in different specialties of nursing, for example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN CoursesThere are generally two scholastic credentials offered that provide education to become an LPN or LVN near Helena AL. The one that can be finished in the shortest amount of time, commonly about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The second alternative 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 finish. The benefit 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 needs to be state approved and ideally 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.
Taking LPN and LVN Courses Online
Enrolling in LPN programs online is emerging as a more favored way to receive training and attain a nursing certificate or degree in Helena AL. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating approach to finding the free time to attend college for many students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. And so if your job and family obligations have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online LPN training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.