How to Find the Best LPN or LVN Classes Near New River Arizona
Now that you have decided on a fulfilling career in the field of nursing, it's essential that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program near New River AZ that will deliver the proper education. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, other than 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 differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the following segment. When beginning their search for schools, many prospective nursing students start with those that are the nearest to their homes or that are the least expensive. While cost and location are significant points to consider, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other concerns, such as if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important too. There are additional questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN course that we will cover later in this article. But first, let's look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
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LPN and LVN Job Description
Licensed Practical Nurses have many different duties that they accomplish in the New River AZ medical facilities where they practice. As their titles imply, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. Even though they may be responsible for monitoring Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The health care facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can find patients requiring medical assistance is their dominion. Every state not only controls their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can't perform. So based on the state, their day-to-day job activities can include:
- Taking vital signs
- Providing medications
- Initiating IV drips
- Observing patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Assisting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their work functions being mandated by each state, the health facilities or other New River AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Also, they can practice in different specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN ProgramsThere are basically two academic credentials offered that provide training to become an LPN or LVN near New River AZ. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, commonly about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and usually require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to supplying 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 seek, 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 guarantees that the core curriculum effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Taking LPN and LVN Online Classes
Attending LPN programs online is emerging as a more popular way to get instruction and attain a nursing certificate or degree in New River AZ. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs require a specific number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient approach to finding the time to attend college for some students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And a large number of online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your job and family commitments have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online LPN program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Things to Ask LPN and LVN Schools
Now that you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, as well as if you will attend classes on campus or online, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges near New River Az as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier mentioned, the location of the school along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two factors that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to see how your selection compares to the other programs.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the certificate program in addition to the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Aside from helping make sure that you receive a premium education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools near New River Arizona.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Also, check with the Arizona school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local New River 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 ideal way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby New River AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist 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 vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) as well as graduation from an approved school. Many states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's essential that the school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also preps you to meet 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 considering 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the New River 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.
Pick the Best New River Licensed Vocational Nurse Training
Selecting the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse school is perhaps the most important step to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are a number of variables that you should consider when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have emphasized within this content, it is essential that you enroll in an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our checklist 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 ambition to succeed, you can become an LPN in New River Arizona.