How to Pick an LPN School in Abingdon Maryland
Now that you have chosen a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program in Abingdon MD that will deliver the appropriate education. 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 responsibilities do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will talk about in the following segment. When initiating their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with the ones that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least expensive. Although cost and location are important 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 extremely important as well. There are additional 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 to start with, let’s take a look at the role 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 numerous functions that they complete in the Abingdon MD medical facilities where they are employed. As their titles imply, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Maryland. Although they may be accountable for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The medical facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, such as hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter patients in need of medical treatment is their dominion. Every 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 job functions might include:
- Checking vital signs
- Giving medications
- Setting up IV drips
- Observing patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Managing patient records
- Helping doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their job duties being governed by each state, the Abingdon MD health care facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can additionally limit their job roles within those parameters. Also, they can practice in numerous specialties of nursing, for instance long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
There are basically two scholastic accreditations available in Maryland that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest period of time, generally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The next choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from offering a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, 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 syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Abingdon MD, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees Available
There is more than one degree option to choose from to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Abingdon MD area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a two year program made available by Maryland community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is normally a 4 year program offered at Maryland colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might want to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is normally a two year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has received one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to contact the Maryland board of nursing for any state mandates.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Abingdon MD area. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from one to 3 months, leading to 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 must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction required and that every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Maryland to make sure that the training course is state approved. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional prerequisites as well.
Online Nursing Schools
Attending nursing programs online is emerging as a more in demand way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing degree. Certain Abingdon MD area schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical answer to finding the time to attend school for many students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more economical. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your work and household commitments have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Programs
Now that you have selected which nursing program to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Maryland and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we earlier pointed out, the location of the school relative to Abingdon MD and the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, 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 Abingdon MD school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping confirm that you receive an excellent education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited Maryland schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) together with 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 essential that the Abingdon MD school you are enrolled in not only provides an excellent education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Maryland or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. In addition, check with the Maryland school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some regional Abingdon MD 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 programs you are considering 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 important 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 contacts in the Abingdon MD area to assist students obtain employment.
Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs in Maryland require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Check if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships in the Abingdon MD area.
Choose the Right LPN Training Abingdon 21009
Selecting the best Licensed Practical Nurse school is probably the most crucial step to launching a new career in the health care field. There are many factors that you must consider when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have pointed out in this content, it is important that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop 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 hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a Licensed Vocational Nurse in Abingdon MD.
Why Did You Decide to Become an LPN?When prepping to interview for a nursing position, it's important to reflect on questions you could be asked. One of the questions that hiring managers frequently ask nursing applicants is "What compelled you to choose nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to discover is not only the personal reasons you may have for being an LPN, but additionally what attributes and talents you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will likely be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, as well as a certain number of general interview questions, so you must organize a number of strategies about how you would like to address them. Because there are several variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a number of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession interests you along with the strengths you possess that make you an excellent nurse and the best choice for the position. Don't try to memorize a response, but take down some concepts and anecdotes that relate to your own strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can help you to formulate your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
Some Cities in Maryland That You Might Be Interested In