How to Pick an LPN Program in Wind Gap Pennsylvania
Once you have chosen a fulfilling career in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program in Wind Gap PA that will furnish the right instruction. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, except for the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their duties do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the next segment. When beginning their search for schools, many potential nursing students begin with those that are the closest to their homes or that are the least costly. Even though price and location are important factors, 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 very important as well. There are various other questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will address later in this article. But first, let’s take a look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Functions
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have many functions that they complete in the Wind Gap PA health care facilities where they are employed. As their titles signify, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Pennsylvania. Although they may be accountable for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the oversight of either an RN or a doctor. The healthcare facilities where they work are numerous and varied, for instance hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anyplace that you can find patients requiring medical care is their domain. Each state not only controls their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their routine job functions can include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Giving medications
- Starting IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Helping doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their job functions being mandated by each state, the Wind Gap PA medical 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 example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
There are essentially two academic credentials available in Pennsylvania that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be completed in the shortest amount of time, generally about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The second alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and usually require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from providing a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Wind Gap PA, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option offered to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Wind Gap PA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a 2 year program offered by Pennsylvania community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently earn a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is usually a four year program offered at Pennsylvania colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified 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 usually a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has earned one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the Pennsylvania board of nursing for any state mandates.
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Wind Gap PA area. The length of the training program 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 required 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 that each state has its own 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 tip is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Pennsylvania to make certain that the training is state certified. In addition to the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be additional requirements as well.
Online Nursing Training
Attending nursing schools online is emerging as a more favored way to get training and attain a nursing degree. Some Wind Gap PA area schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs require a specified number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient solution to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous 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 family commitments have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Schools
Once you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Pennsylvania and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school relative to Wind Gap PA and the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final selection, 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 degree or certificate program along with the Wind Gap PA school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping confirm that you receive a quality education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited Pennsylvania schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) in addition to 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 imperative that the Wind Gap PA school you are enrolled in not only provides an excellent education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Pennsylvania or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations 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 regional Wind Gap 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 schools 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts in the Wind Gap PA area to help students obtain a position.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs in Pennsylvania require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Check if the schools have associations with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships in the Wind Gap PA area.
Pick the Right LPN School Wind Gap 18091
Deciding on the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse college is arguably the most important step to beginning a new career in the healthcare industry. There are many factors that you need to take into account when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have pointed out in this article, it is important that you pick an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become an LVN in Wind Gap PA.
Why Did You Choose to Become an LPN?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's important to reflect on questions you might be asked. One of the questions that recruiters often ask nursing prospects is "What drove you to decide on nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to uncover is not merely the private reasons you may have for being a licensed practical nurse, but also what characteristics and talents you possess that make you good at what you do. You will likely be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, in addition to a significant number of general interview questions, so you need to ready several approaches about how you want to address them. Given that there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can address this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When preparing an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you as well as the strengths you have that make you an exceptional nurse and the ideal candidate for the job. Don't try to memorize a response, but write down some ideas and talking points that pertain to your personal strengths and experiences. Reading through sample answers can help you to develop your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to impress the interviewer.
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