How to Choose an LPN Program in Sunapee New Hampshire
Now that you have chosen a fulfilling career in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you find a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school in Sunapee NH that will deliver the proper education. If you reside 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 carry out the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their functions do vary 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 start with those that are the closest to their residences or that are the least expensive. While price and location are important factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other factors, for instance 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 LVN or LPN training program 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 training and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Functions
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have a number of functions that they accomplish in the Sunapee NH health care facilities where they work. As their titles imply, they are required to be licensed in all states, including New Hampshire. Although they may be responsible for monitoring Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The medical facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, such as hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can encounter patients seeking medical assistance is their dominion. Each state not only oversees their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their everyday work functions may include:
- Taking vital signs
- Providing medicines
- Initiating IV drips
- Observing patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Supporting physicians or RNs with procedures
Along with their job functions being regulated by each state, the Sunapee NH healthcare facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. Additionally, they can work in numerous specialties of nursing, which include long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are generally two academic accreditations available in New Hampshire that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time frame, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to supplying a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Sunapee NH, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees available to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Sunapee NH area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a two year program made available by New Hampshire community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately achieve a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more expansive training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at New Hampshire colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may desire to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is typically a 2 year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has received one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so don’t forget to contact the New Hampshire board of nursing for any state mandates.
In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Sunapee NH area. The length of the training can take anywhere from one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum period of instruction required and that every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make certain that the program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to contact the health or nursing board for New Hampshire to make sure that the education is state approved. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional requirements as well.
Online Nursing Classes
Enrolling in nursing programs online is emerging as a more in demand way to receive instruction and earn a nursing degree. Some Sunapee NH area schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs require a specified number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating answer to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your job and household responsibilities have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Programs
Once you have decided on which nursing degree to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within New Hampshire and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we already discussed, the location of the school relative to Sunapee NH and the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the first two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other schools.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the Sunapee NH school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping confirm that you receive a quality education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited New Hampshire schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Sunapee NH school you are enrolled in not only provides an excellent education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for New Hampshire or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Also, contact the New Hampshire school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some regional Sunapee NH healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments are of the schools as well.
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 unhappy 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 superb reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Sunapee NH area to assist students gain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs in New Hampshire require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Check if the schools have a working relationship with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships in the Sunapee NH area.
Enroll in the Right LPN Degree Sunapee 03782
Deciding on the best Licensed Practical Nurse degree program is perhaps the most crucial first step to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are various aspects that you should take into account when picking a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have stressed within this post, it is critical that you select an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Sunapee NH.
Why Did You Choose to Be an LPN?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's a good idea to reflect on questions you might be asked. Among the questions that recruiters typically ask nursing applicants is "What drove you to pick nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to uncover is not just the personal reasons you might have for being an LPN, but additionally what characteristics and skills you have that make you good at what you do. You will likely be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, as well as a significant number of typical interview questions, so you must organize some approaches about how you would like to answer them. Considering there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can address this fundamental question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you in addition to the abilities you have that make you an outstanding nurse and the best choice for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but write down some concepts and anecdotes that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reading through sample answers can help you to prepare your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to include to wow the recruiter.
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