Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Classes
How to Find the Right One Near Homewood Alabama
Once you have decided on a fulfilling vocation in the field of nursing, it's essential that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near Homewood AL that will deliver the proper training. If you reside in California or Texas, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. Other than the names, there is no difference between an LPN and LVN. They both practice in health care facilities under the supervision of Physicians and Registered Nurses and fulfill identical job duties. However, as we will discuss in this report, their daily job functions can vary based on the state where they are employed. When initiating their search for schools, many future nursing students begin with the ones that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least expensive. Even though cost and location are important factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. For example are the schools accredited or do they have high pass rates on the licensing exam, which are both very important too. There are various other questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN course that we will cover 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.
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LPN and LVN Job Description
Licensed Practical Nurses have many duties that they carry out in the Homewood AL health care facilities where they work. As their titles signify, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Alabama. Although they may be responsible for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The medical facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anyplace that you can find patients seeking medical assistance is their dominion. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can't perform. So based on the state, their everyday job activities can include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Giving medicines
- Starting IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Assisting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their job responsibilities being mandated by each state, the healthcare facilities or other Homewood AL healthcare providers where LPNs work can additionally limit their job duties within those parameters. Also, they can practice in different specialties of nursing, for instance long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN Training ProgramsThere are principally two academic credentials available that provide education to become an LPN near Homewood AL. The one that can be concluded in the shortest time period, normally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The second choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and commonly require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from supplying a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide more transferable 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 guarantees that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
LPN and LVN Programs Online
Attending LPN or LVN programs online is growing into a more in demand way to get instruction and attain a nursing certificate or degree in Homewood AL. Some schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a specified amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more practical answer to finding the time to attend college for some students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. And so if your work and household obligations have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online LPN school will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Questions to Ask LPN and LVN Schools
Now that you have decided on obtaining your LPN or LVN certificate or degree, and if you will attend classes on campus or online, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near Homewood AL as well as within Alabama and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously discussed, the site of the school as well as the expense of tuition are probably going to be the initial two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the other programs.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the certificate or degree program along with the school are 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 acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools near Homewood AL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for LPNs and LVNs differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's essential that the school you are attending not only provides an outstanding education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Alabama or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the LPN or LVN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Also, get in touch with the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Homewood AL 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 or LVN programs 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It's also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Homewood AL medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Check if the schools have associations with nearby Homewood AL community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right Homewood LPN or LVN School
Choosing the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse school is probably the most important first step to beginning a new career in the medical care field. There are various factors that you need to think about when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have stressed within this article, it is essential that you select an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Homewood Alabama.