How to Select an LPN Program in Florence Arizona
Once you have chosen a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it’s essential that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school in Florence AZ that will furnish the proper education. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, other than the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their responsibilities do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the next segment. When initiating 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. Although tuition and location are relevant factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other concerns, such as 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 prospective schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will discuss later in this article. But first, let’s look at the function 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 duties that they complete in the Florence AZ health facilities where they are employed. As their titles imply, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. Although they may be accountable for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves typically work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The healthcare facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter 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 depending on the state, their day-to-day job activities can include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Providing medications
- Setting up IV drips
- Observing patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Managing patient records
- Supporting doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their work duties being regulated by each state, the Florence AZ health care facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further 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.
LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are basically two scholastic accreditations offered in Arizona that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be completed in the shortest period of time, typically about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The next alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and typically require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides providing a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you seek, 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 guarantees that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Florence AZ, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees offered to become a registered nurse. And in order 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 continue on to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Florence AZ area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program made available by Arizona community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is commonly a four year program offered at Arizona colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might desire to advance 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 acquiring the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example 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) to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the Arizona board of nursing for any state mandates.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Florence AZ area. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from just 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 mandated and that every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s crucial to make certain that the course you enroll in not only satisfies 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 Arizona 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 might be other requirements as well.
Online Nursing Programs
Attending nursing schools online is emerging as a more popular way to receive instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Some Florence AZ area schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend college for many students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your job and household obligations have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Schools
Once you have determined which nursing degree to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your choices. As you probably realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Arizona and the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school relative to Florence AZ and the expense of tuition are probably going to be the primary two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares to the field.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the Florence AZ school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping ensure that you receive an excellent education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited Arizona schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Florence AZ school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Additionally, contact the Arizona school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Florence AZ 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 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 favorable reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Florence AZ area to help students obtain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs in Arizona require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Ask if the schools have associations with community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships in the Florence AZ area.
Enroll in the Right LPN Degree Florence 85232
Enrolling in the best Licensed Practical Nurse training program is probably the most important step to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are many aspects that you need to consider when picking a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have stressed in this content, it is essential that you select an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become an LPN in Florence AZ.
Why Did You Decide to Become an LPN?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's important to consider questions you could be asked. Among the things that recruiters frequently ask nursing candidates is "What drove you to decide on nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to learn is not just the private reasons you may have for becoming an LPN, but also what attributes and skills you possess that make you good at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, in addition to a certain number of standard interview questions, so you should organize some strategies about how you would like to answer them. Considering there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary 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 try to memorize a response, but take down some concepts and topics that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can assist you to develop your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to impress the interviewer.
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