How to Find the Best LPN or LVN Training Program Near Goodyear Arizona
Now that you have chosen a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it's essential that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near Goodyear AZ that will deliver the appropriate training. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, except for the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the guidance 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 following section. When beginning their search for schools, many potential nursing students begin with the ones that are the closest to their residences or that are the least expensive. While cost and location are important factors, they are not the only criteria that you should base your selection on. Other concerns, such as if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important as well. There are even more 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 to start with, let's look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the training and licensing process.
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Job Duties of an LPN or LVN
Licensed Practical Nurses have numerous duties that they complete in the Goodyear AZ medical facilities where they are employed. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. Even though they may be responsible for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The medical facilities where they work are numerous and varied, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter patients seeking medical attention is their domain. Each state not only controls their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can't perform. So depending on the state, their everyday job activities might include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Giving medications
- Setting up IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Assisting doctors or RNs with procedures
Along with their job functions being mandated by each state, the health care facilities or other Goodyear AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can additionally limit their job duties within those parameters. In addition, they can work in numerous specialties of nursing, for example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN ProgramsThere are generally two academic credentials offered that provide instruction to become an LPN or LVN near Goodyear AZ. The one that may be concluded in the shortest period of time, normally about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next alternative is to obtain 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, along with offering a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you seek, 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 attests that the course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Taking LVN and LPN Classes Online
Enrolling in LPN schools online is growing into a more preferred way to get training and attain a nursing certificate or degree in Goodyear AZ. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient approach to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your job and household responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online LPN training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
What to Ask LPN and LVN Schools
Once you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following pointers to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Goodyear Az as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier pointed out, the location of the school and the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two things that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, 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 along with the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides helping ensure that you obtain an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited schools near Goodyear Arizona.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the LPN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. 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 speak with some nearby Goodyear 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 obtain 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. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Goodyear AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement 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 are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) along with graduation from an approved school. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements 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 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 favorable reputation within the Goodyear 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 Goodyear Licensed Vocational Nurse School
Picking the right Licensed Practical Nurse program is probably the most crucial first step to launching a new career in the healthcare field. There are numerous variables that you need to take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and financial situation. As we have pointed out in this post, it is essential that you select an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Goodyear Arizona.