How to Enroll In the Best LPN or LVN Training Program Near Douglas Arizona
Now that you have decided on a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it's imperative that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college near Douglas AZ that will deliver the appropriate education. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, 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 responsibilities do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will talk about in the next section. When beginning their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with those that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least expensive. Although price and location are important considerations, they are not the only qualifications 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 extremely important as well. There are various other questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN course that we will cover later in this article. But first, let's take a look at the function of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
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Job Duties of an LPN or LVN
Licensed practical nurses (LPNs) are an important part of the healthcare team, supporting doctors and nurses in caring for patients of all ages. LPNs work closely with registered nurses (RNs) and physicians to provide patients with basic nursing care. An LPN’s duties can vary slightly depending on the healthcare setting and the state in which they work. For example, some states do not permit LPNs to administer medication or start IV drips. In other states, experienced LPNs are able to supervise and manage less-experienced nurses or nursing aides. Some of the typical duties of an LPN might include:
- Monitoring patients
- Taking patient vital signs and histories
- Performing routine assessments, such as checking blood pressure
- Changing bandages
- Inserting IVs or catheters
- Listening to patients’ concerns and reporting back to RNs and doctors
- Ensuring patients are comfortable
- Helping patients bathe or dress
LPNs can also work in a wide variety of healthcare settings, including Douglas AZ hospitals, doctor's offices and urgent care clinics. Due to an aging population, there is a growing need for LPNs in long-term care, such as rehabilitation centers, residential treatment centers and hospice. Most LPNs work in nursing and residential care facilities.
LPN Certificates and DegreesIf you want to become a licensed practical nurse, you must first complete one year of coursework to earn a certificate or a diploma in an accredited LPN/LVN program. Most states have dozens of accredited colleges, technical schools, and hospitals that offer LPN/LVN programs. The first consideration you must make when becoming an LPN is which school you will attend. This can be a difficult choice. When choosing a school, choose one which is accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency. One well-known accrediting agency is the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing. After satisfying the LPN program coursework and grade requirements laid out by your state’s Board of Nursing, you will be eligible to take the NCLEX-PN, or the National Council Licensure Examination. This exam is mandatory for all LPN/LVN's in the U.S. and can be scheduled through the National Council of State Boards of Nursing.
Attending LVN and LPN Online Courses
Attending LPN schools online is growing into a more preferred way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Douglas AZ. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a specified amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your job and family obligations have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online LPN program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic 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 internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges near Douglas 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 manageable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school and the price of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final selection, 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. Aside from helping make sure that you receive a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools near Douglas Arizona.
- 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 as well. In addition, check with the Arizona school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Douglas AZ healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgements are of the schools as well.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Douglas AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist 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 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) in addition to graduation from an approved school. Certain 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 attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- 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 dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It's also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the Douglas AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain a position.
- 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 Right Douglas Licensed Vocational Nurse Training
Selecting the right Licensed Practical Nurse program is perhaps the most critical phase to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are numerous aspects that you must take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have stressed in this content, 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 medical community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become an LPN in Douglas Arizona.