How to Enroll In an LPN Program in San Elizario Texas
Now that you have chosen a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it’s important that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school in San Elizario TX that will furnish the appropriate 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 perform the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their duties do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the following segment. When starting their search for schools, many potential nursing students start with the ones that are the nearest to their residences or that are the least costly. Even though tuition and location are relevant factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other concerns, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important too. There are various other 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 to start with, let’s look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the training and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Responsibilities
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have many different duties that they accomplish in the San Elizario TX medical facilities where they are employed. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Texas. While they may be accountable for monitoring Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the oversight of either an RN or a doctor. The health care facilities where they work are numerous and varied, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can find patients seeking medical assistance is their domain. Every state not only oversees their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their daily work activities might include:
- Taking vital signs
- Giving medications
- Setting up IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Helping physicians or RNs with procedures
In addition to their occupational duties being controlled by each state, the San Elizario TX health care facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Additionally, they can practice in numerous specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN Courses
There are basically two academic accreditations offered in Texas that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest time frame, generally about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The second option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and commonly require 2 years to complete. 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 seek, 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 warrants that the course of study adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in San Elizario TX, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees Available
There is more than one degree option offered to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or continue on to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the San Elizario TX area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program made available by Texas community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more in depth training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at Texas colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may desire 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 generally a two year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
Once 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) to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so don’t forget to contact the Texas board of nursing for any state mandates.
In contrast to some 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 San Elizario TX area. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to receive at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training directed and that every state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to check with the health or nursing board for Texas to make certain that the training is state approved. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other requirements as well.
Nursing Online Degrees
Attending nursing schools online is growing into a more preferred way to receive instruction and attain a nursing degree. Certain San Elizario TX area schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend classes for some students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. 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 program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Colleges
Once you have decided on which nursing program to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Texas and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school relative to San Elizario TX as well as the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two points 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 pick measures up to the other programs.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the San Elizario TX school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping verify that you obtain an excellent education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited Texas schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements 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) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the San Elizario TX school you are attending not only delivers a top-notch education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Texas or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, get in touch with the Texas school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional San Elizario TX 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 looking at what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to finish 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 favorable reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts in the San Elizario TX area to assist students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs in Texas require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing also. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships in the San Elizario TX area.
Pick the Right LPN Degree San Elizario 79849
Deciding on the right Licensed Practical Nurse degree program is arguably the most crucial first step to beginning a new career in the healthcare field. There are a number of factors that you must think about when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have emphasized in 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 healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Vocational Nurse in San Elizario TX.
Why Did You Decide to Be an LPN?When getting ready to interview for a nursing job, it's helpful to reflect on questions you could be asked. Among the things that hiring managers typically ask nursing applicants is "What made you choose nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to uncover is not just the private reasons you might have for being a nurse, but also what attributes and abilities you possess that make you good at what you do. You will probably be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, along with a certain number of routine interview questions, so you should organize several ideas about how you would like to address them. Since there are so many factors that go into selecting a career, you can address this primary question in a number of ways. When readying an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession interests you as well as the strengths you have that make you an outstanding nurse and the best candidate for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but jot down a few ideas and topics that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can assist you to prepare your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to wow the interviewer.
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