How to Pick an LPN School in Mountville Pennsylvania
Once you have decided on a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school in Mountville PA that will provide the proper instruction. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, other than the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their duties do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the next segment. When starting their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with those that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least expensive. While price and location are important considerations, they are not the only criteria that you should base your decision on. Other variables, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important as well. 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 to start with, let’s look at the function of an LPN and what is involved in the training and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Duties
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have many functions that they complete in the Mountville PA health facilities where they work. As their titles imply, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Pennsylvania. Even though they may be accountable for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves typically work under the oversight 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. Anyplace that you can encounter patients requiring medical attention is their domain. Every state not only oversees their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their daily job functions may include:
- Taking vital signs
- Administering medications
- Setting up IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Supporting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their job duties being governed by each state, the Mountville PA healthcare facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can additionally limit their job roles within those parameters. Additionally, they can practice in numerous specialties of nursing, including long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
There are principally two academic credentials offered in Pennsylvania that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time period, usually about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The second choice is to earn 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, aside from supplying a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Mountville PA, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees Available
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are available in the Mountville PA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a 2 year program made available by Pennsylvania community colleges. It prepares 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 attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at Pennsylvania colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might 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 commonly a 2 year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
Once 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. Further requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to check with the Pennsylvania board of nursing for any state mandates.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Mountville PA area. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain 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 minimal amount of training directed and every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s essential to make sure that the course you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but likewise 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 education is state certified. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional prerequisites as well.
Online Nursing Degrees
Attending nursing programs online is emerging as a more in demand way to receive training and earn a nursing degree. Certain Mountville PA area schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating answer to finding the time to attend school for some students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, 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 work and family responsibilities have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Colleges
Now that you have selected which nursing program to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout Pennsylvania and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school relative to Mountville PA along with the expense of tuition are probably going to be the first two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final choice, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the other schools.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the Mountville PA school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping ensure that you get a premium education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited Pennsylvania schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Mountville PA school you are attending not only provides a top-notch education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Pennsylvania or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. In addition, get in touch with the Pennsylvania school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Mountville PA 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 programs 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 verify that the school has a good reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Mountville PA area to help students gain a position.
Internship Programs. The most ideal 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 specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Check if the schools have associations with community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships in the Mountville PA area.
Choose the Right LPN School Mountville 17554
Picking the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse school is probably the most critical step to beginning a new career in the healthcare field. There are various variables that you must consider when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, obligations, and financial status. As we have pointed out within this content, it is essential that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using 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 final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become an LPN in Mountville PA.
Why Did You Want to Become a Nurse?When getting ready to interview for a nursing job, it's a good idea to consider questions you might be asked. Among the things that interviewers often ask nursing candidates is "What made you pick nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not just the private reasons you might have for being a licensed practical nurse, but additionally what qualities and talents you have that make you good at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, in addition to a significant number of general interview questions, so you must organize some ideas about how you would like to address them. Considering there are several factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work interests you along with the abilities you have that make you an excellent nurse and the perfiect choice for the job. Don't try to memorize a response, but jot down a few ideas and anecdotes that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample answers can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to impress the recruiter.
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