How to Select an LPN Program in Cataumet Massachusetts
Once you have decided on a fulfilling career in the field of nursing, it’s essential that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school in Cataumet MA that will furnish the necessary instruction. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, apart from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their duties do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will talk about in the following segment. When beginning their search for schools, many prospective nursing students start with the ones that are the closest to their residences or that are the least costly. Although tuition and location are significant considerations, they are not the only criteria that you should base your selection on. Other variables, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important also. There are even more questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will cover later in this article. But first, let’s take a look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Duties
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have a number of duties that they perform in the Cataumet MA health facilities where they are employed. As their titles imply, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Massachusetts. While they may be responsible for monitoring Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can find patients seeking medical assistance is their domain. Each state not only oversees their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their everyday work functions can include:
- Taking vital signs
- Providing medications
- Starting IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Assisting physicians or RNs with procedures
Along with their occupational functions being regulated by each state, the Cataumet MA 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 different specialties of nursing, for example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are principally two scholastic credentials available in Massachusetts that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest time period, commonly about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The other option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with providing a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide 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 any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Cataumet MA, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees Available
There are several degree options offered to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Cataumet MA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program offered by Massachusetts community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is normally a four year program offered at Massachusetts colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may want to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is normally a 2 year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has acquired one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the Massachusetts board of nursing for any state requirements.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Cataumet MA area. The duration of the training can take anywhere from one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction mandated and every state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Massachusetts to make sure that the education is state approved. In addition to the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other prerequisites as well.
Online Nursing Programs
Enrolling in nursing schools online is emerging as a more popular way to receive training and earn a nursing degree. Certain Cataumet MA area schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more practical solution to finding the time to attend college for some students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more economical. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and family obligations have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Now that you have determined which nursing program to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Massachusetts and the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school relative to Cataumet MA along with the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two points that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the other schools.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the Cataumet MA school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping ensure that you get an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited Massachusetts schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Cataumet MA school you are attending not only provides an outstanding education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Massachusetts or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Visit online rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Additionally, contact the Massachusetts school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some nearby Cataumet MA 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 colleges 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts in the Cataumet MA area to help students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs in Massachusetts require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with local hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships in the Cataumet MA area.
Enroll in the Right LPN Training Cataumet 02534
Picking the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse college is perhaps the most crucial step to launching a new career in the healthcare field. There are various aspects that you need to take into account when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, obligations, and financial status. As we have pointed out in this article, it is critical that you select an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional 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 ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a Licensed Vocational Nurse in Cataumet MA.
Why Did You Choose to Become a Licensed Practical Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's a good idea to review questions you might be asked. Among the questions that recruiters frequently ask nursing applicants is "What compelled you to select nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to discover is not merely the personal reasons you might have for being a nurse, but also what attributes and skills you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will likely be asked questions relating exclusively to nursing, in addition to a significant number of typical interview questions, so you must organize a number of ideas about how you want to respond to them. Considering there are several factors that go into choosing a career, you can address this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When formulating an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the talents you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the perfiect candidate for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but take down some concepts and topics that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample answers can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the interviewer.
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