How to Select an LPN Program in Elkhart Kansas
Once you have decided on a fulfilling vocation in the field of nursing, it’s important that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college in Elkhart KS that will deliver the necessary training. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, other than the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their functions do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the next section. When beginning their search for schools, many potential nursing students begin with the ones that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least expensive. While cost and location are significant factors, they are not the only criteria that you should base your selection on. Other factors, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important as well. There are additional questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will cover later in this article. But first, let’s look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Activities
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have numerous functions that they perform in the Elkhart KS health care facilities where they practice. As their titles imply, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Kansas. Although they may be accountable for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The health care facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, for instance hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anyplace that you can find patients in need of medical treatment is their domain. Every state not only oversees their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their day-to-day job activities might include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Giving medications
- Initiating IV drips
- Observing patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Assisting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
In addition to their work duties being mandated by each state, the Elkhart KS health facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can additionally limit their job roles within those parameters. Additionally, they can practice in various specialties of nursing, for example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN Certificates and Degrees
There are basically two academic accreditations available in Kansas that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest amount of time, commonly about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The other choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish 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 some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Elkhart KS, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options 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 continue on to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Elkhart KS area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a two year program made available by Kansas community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more expansive training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at Kansas colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might want 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 normally a two year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has obtained one of the above degrees, she or he 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 be sure to check with the Kansas board of nursing for any state mandates.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA training can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Elkhart KS area. The duration of the training 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. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount of training mandated and that every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make sure that the course you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Kansas to make certain that the training course is state certified. As well as 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.
Nursing Online Classes
Enrolling in nursing programs online is becoming a more in demand way to get instruction and attain a nursing degree. Some Elkhart KS area schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient approach to finding the time to attend classes for some students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and family responsibilities have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Schools
Once you have determined which nursing degree to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Kansas and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier mentioned, the location of the school relative to Elkhart KS and the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the first two things that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the other schools.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the Elkhart KS school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Aside from helping confirm that you obtain a premium education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited Kansas schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Elkhart KS school you are enrolled in not only delivers a top-notch education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Kansas or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Also, get in touch with the Kansas school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Elkhart KS healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgements are of the schools as well.
Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the LPN colleges 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 important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a good reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Elkhart KS area to help students obtain a position.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs in Kansas require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with local hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships in the Elkhart KS area.
Choose the Right LPN College Elkhart 67950
Picking the right Licensed Practical Nurse training program is perhaps the most critical step to starting a new career in the health care industry. There are numerous aspects that you need to think about when selecting a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have highlighted in this post, it is critical that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become an LPN in Elkhart KS.
Why Did You Choose to Become a Licensed Practical Nurse?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's helpful to review questions you may be asked. One of the questions that recruiters frequently ask nursing candidates is "What compelled you to choose nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not just the personal reasons you may have for becoming a licensed practical nurse, but additionally what attributes and skills you possess that make you outstanding at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, in addition to a significant number of typical interview questions, so you must organize some approaches about how you would like to respond to them. Considering there are numerous variables that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a number of ways. When readying an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession interests you in addition to the talents you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the perfiect choice for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but jot down a few ideas and topics that relate to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to wow the interviewer.
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