How to Pick the Best LPN or LVN Classes Near Anthem Arizona
Now that you have chosen a fulfilling career in the field of nursing, it's imperative that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near Anthem AZ that will provide the proper education. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, apart from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their functions do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the next segment. When initiating their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with those that are the nearest to their homes or that are the least costly. Even though price and location are significant factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other variables, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important also. There are additional questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN program that we will talk about later in this article. But first, let's take a look at the role 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 numerous tasks that they accomplish in the Anthem AZ medical facilities where they work. As their titles signify, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. While they may be accountable for monitoring Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves typically 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. Anyplace that you can encounter patients seeking medical treatment 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 routine work functions might include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Administering medications
- Starting IV drips
- Observing patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Supporting doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their job responsibilities being governed by each state, the healthcare facilities or other Anthem AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Additionally, they can work in numerous specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN CoursesThere are essentially two scholastic credentials available that provide instruction to become an LPN or LVN near Anthem AZ. The one that may be finished in the shortest period of time, commonly about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and typically require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from providing a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind 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 syllabus effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Enrolling in LVN and LPN Online Courses
Enrolling in LPN schools online is becoming a more favored way to receive instruction and acquire a nursing certificate or degree in Anthem AZ. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend school for many students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your job and household commitments have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online LPN training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask LPN and LVN Programs
Once you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or online, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near Anthem Az as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier mentioned, the location of the school as well as the cost of tuition are probably going to be the first two points that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate 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 organization. Besides helping confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools near Anthem Arizona.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Also, check with the Arizona school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some nearby Anthem AZ healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions are of the schools as well.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Anthem AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships. Also, it's important that you choose a school that offers clinical training in the type of facility you are most interested in. For example, if you want training and experience in pediatric care, make sure that the school you choose provides adequate clinical rotation in an area Pediatric Hospital.
- 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) in addition to graduation from an approved school. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's important that the school you are attending not only provides an excellent education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- 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 finish their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. It's also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the Anthem AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain employment.
- NCLEX Exam Pass Rate. Once you receive your certificate or diploma, you must sign up for and pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN). Enrolling in a school with at least a 75% pass rate is highly preferred. Lower pass rates may indicate that a school’s program, curriculum or instructors are ineffective in teaching its students. You can find out from the school what their passing rate is for the last 5 years, or request the information from the State Board of Nursing.
Pick the Best Anthem Licensed Vocational Nurse Program
Choosing the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most critical step to beginning a new career in the medical care industry. There are many aspects that you should consider when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have stressed in this post, it is essential that you enroll in an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Anthem Arizona.