How to Pick the Right LPN or LVN Classes Near Catalina Foothills Arizona
Now that you have decided on a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it's essential that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program near Catalina Foothills AZ that will furnish the right training. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, aside from 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 functions do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the next segment. When starting their search for schools, many future nursing students begin with those that are the closest to their houses or that are the least expensive. While price and location are relevant considerations, they are not the only criteria that you should base your decision on. Other factors, such as if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very 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 cover later in this article. But first, let's have a look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the training and licensing process.
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What does an LPN or LVN Do?
Licensed Practical Nurses have many duties that they accomplish in the Catalina Foothills AZ health facilities where they work. As their titles signify, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. Although they may be accountable for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally work under the guidance 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. Anyplace that you can encounter patients requiring medical treatment is their domain. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can't perform. So based on the state, their routine job activities may include:
- Taking vital signs
- Giving medications
- Starting IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Assisting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
In addition to their work duties being mandated by each state, the medical facilities or other Catalina Foothills AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Also, they can work in numerous specialties of nursing, for instance long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN ProgramsThere are principally two academic credentials available that provide instruction to become an LPN or LVN near Catalina Foothills AZ. The one that can be finished in the shortest time period, usually about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The other 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 complete. The benefit 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 kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be state approved and ideally accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Attending LPN and LVN Courses Online
Enrolling in LPN schools online is growing into a more in demand way to get training and acquire a nursing certificate or degree in Catalina Foothills AZ. Certain schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient answer to finding the free time to attend classes for many students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even additional 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. So if your work and family responsibilities have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online LPN training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask LPN and LVN Schools
Once you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, as well as if you will attend classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Catalina Foothills Az as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school along with the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, 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 along with the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping make sure that you obtain a premium education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools near Catalina Foothills Arizona.
- Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. In addition, get in touch with the Arizona school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some nearby Catalina Foothills AZ healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments are of the schools as well.
- Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Catalina Foothills AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing 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 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 approved school. Some states require a specific 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 delivers an excellent education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- 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 finish their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. It's also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a superb reputation within the Catalina Foothills AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain 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.
Choose the Best Catalina Foothills Licensed Vocational Nurse Training
Choosing the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse program is arguably the most critical phase to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are a number of variables that you need to take into account when selecting a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have emphasized within this article, it is important that you pick an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become an LPN in Catalina Foothills Arizona.