How to Choose an LPN School in Mountain Top Pennsylvania
Now that you have decided on a fulfilling vocation in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program in Mountain Top PA that will provide the proper 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 undertake the same job functions and work in healthcare 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 address in the following section. When starting their search for schools, many prospective nursing students start with the ones that are the nearest to their homes or that are the least expensive. Even though price and location are important considerations, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other variables, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important also. There are additional questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will address later in this article. But first, let’s have a look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Activities
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have numerous duties that they perform in the Mountain Top PA health care facilities where they practice. As their titles imply, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Pennsylvania. Although they may be accountable for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The health care facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, such as hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can find patients requiring medical care 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 routine job functions might include:
- Checking vital signs
- Giving medications
- Starting IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Helping physicians or RNs with procedures
In addition to their work functions being mandated by each state, the Mountain Top PA healthcare facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Additionally, they can work in different specialties of nursing, for instance long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN Training
There are essentially two scholastic credentials offered in Pennsylvania that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest time frame, typically about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The other alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides offering 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 type of credential you pursue, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Mountain Top PA, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees
There are multiple degrees to choose from to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Mountain Top PA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program offered by Pennsylvania community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and later achieve a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more expansive training than the ADN. It is normally a four year program offered at Pennsylvania colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might wish to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is typically a 2 year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has attained 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. Additional requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the Pennsylvania board of nursing for any state requirements.
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA training can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Mountain Top PA area. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction directed and every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only complies with 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 Pennsylvania to make certain that the training course is state approved. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Classes
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is emerging as a more popular way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing degree. Certain Mountain Top PA area schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a specific amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend classes for many students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and household commitments have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Courses
Now that you have determined which nursing degree to pursue, and whether to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout Pennsylvania and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier discussed, the location of the school relative to Mountain Top PA as well as the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two factors that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, 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 as well as the Mountain Top PA school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Aside from helping make sure that you obtain a quality education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited Pennsylvania schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements 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) together with graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Mountain Top PA school you are attending not only provides an outstanding education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Pennsylvania or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Also, contact the Pennsylvania school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some nearby Mountain Top PA healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions 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 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 substantiate that the school has a good reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Mountain Top PA area to assist students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs in Pennsylvania require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Find out if the schools have associations with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships in the Mountain Top PA area.
Choose the Right LPN Course Mountain Top 18707
Selecting the right Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most important phase to launching a new career in the health care field. There are many variables that you need to consider when picking a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have emphasized within this content, it is important that you select an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. By using 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 drive to succeed, you can become an LVN in Mountain Top PA.
Why Did You Desire to Become a Nurse?When getting ready to interview for a nursing position, it's helpful to reflect on questions you might be asked. Among the things that recruiters often ask nursing applicants is "What compelled you to decide on nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to learn is not merely the private reasons you might have for becoming an LPN, but additionally what characteristics and talents you have that make you outstanding at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating exclusively to nursing, along with a significant number of typical interview questions, so you should ready some ideas about how you would like to answer them. Since there are several factors that go into choosing a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession interests you along with the talents you possess that make you an exceptional nurse and the best choice for the job. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but jot down a few ideas and talking points that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample responses can help you to prepare your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to include to impress the recruiter.
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