Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Programs
How to Find the Right One Near Marana Arizona
Once you have chosen a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it's essential that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program near Marana AZ that will furnish the appropriate instruction. If you reside in California or Texas, 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 LVN. Both work in health care facilities supervised by Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors and perform the same job duties. Although, as we will discuss in this report, their daily job functions can vary based on the state where they are practicing. When starting their search for schools, many future nursing students start with those that are the closest to their houses or that are the least costly. But there are additional qualifications that a school should have and a decision should not be made based on cost and location alone. For example are the schools accredited or do they have high pass rates on the licensing exam, which are both extremely important too. There are additional questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN course that we will talk about later in this article. But to start with, let's take a look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
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What is an LPN or LVN?
Licensed Practical Nurses have numerous functions that they accomplish in the Marana AZ medical facilities where they practice. As their titles imply, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. Even though 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 health care facilities where they work are numerous and varied, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter patients seeking medical attention is their domain. Each state not only controls their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can't perform. So depending on the state, their day-to-day work functions might include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Providing medicines
- Starting IV drips
- Observing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Supporting doctors or RNs with procedures
In addition to their work responsibilities being controlled by each state, the medical facilities or other Marana AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Additionally, they can practice in various specialties of nursing, for instance long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN Certificates and DegreesThere are basically two scholastic credentials available that provide training to become an LPN near Marana AZ. The one that may be finished in the shortest amount of time, generally about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next choice is to attain 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 benefit of Associate Degrees, along with providing a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. No matter the kind 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 attests that the course of study properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Online LPN and LVN Programs
Attending LPN or LVN schools online is becoming a more in demand way to receive instruction and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Marana AZ. Many schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a specified amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend classes for some students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your work and family commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online LPN program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask LPN and LVN Schools
Now that you have decided on obtaining your LPN or LVN certificate or degree, as well as if you will attend classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near Marana AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier discussed, the location of the school as well as the cost of tuition are probably going to be the primary two factors that you will consider. 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 measures up 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 recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping verify that you get a quality education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools near Marana AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs and LVNs vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's important that the school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the LPN or LVN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, contact the Arizona school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some local Marana 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 or LVN programs 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 unhappy 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 superb reputation within the Marana AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Find out if the schools have associations with local Marana AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Choose the Best Marana LPN or LVN Program
Picking the right Licensed Practical Nurse program is probably the most critical phase to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are numerous aspects that you must take into account when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, obligations, and financial situation. As we have emphasized in this post, it is critical that you enroll in an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Marana Arizona.