How to Choose an LPN Program in Seekonk Massachusetts
Once you have decided on a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college in Seekonk MA that will furnish 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 carry out the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their functions do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the following segment. When beginning their search for schools, many potential nursing students begin with the ones that are the nearest to their homes or that are the least expensive. Even though cost and location are important points to consider, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other concerns, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely 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 address later in this article. But to start with, let’s look at the job 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 many different duties that they perform in the Seekonk MA health facilities where they work. As their titles signify, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Massachusetts. Even though they may be responsible for managing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves typically work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can find patients requiring medical attention is their domain. Each state not only controls their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their daily work functions might include:
- Checking vital signs
- Administering medicines
- Starting IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Managing patient records
- Supporting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their job responsibilities being controlled by each state, the Seekonk MA medical facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. Also, they can work in different specialties of nursing, for example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN Certificates and Degrees
There are basically two scholastic accreditations offered in Massachusetts that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest period of time, normally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next option is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to offering 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 type of credential you pursue, it should 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 Seekonk MA, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees available 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 earn a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are available in the Seekonk MA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a two year program offered by Massachusetts community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more extensive training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at Massachusetts colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may want to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is usually a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has acquired one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) in order to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the Massachusetts board of nursing for any state requirements.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Seekonk MA area. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training mandated and each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make certain that the 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 check with the health or nursing board for Massachusetts to make sure that the training course is state approved. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other requirements as well.
Online Nursing Classes
Attending nursing schools online is becoming a more preferred way to receive instruction and earn a nursing degree. Many Seekonk MA area schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating approach to finding the time to attend school for some students. Regarding 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 may be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and family obligations have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Schools
Now that you have decided on which nursing degree to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you no doubt realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Massachusetts and the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school relative to Seekonk MA along with the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two points that you will look at. 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 pick measures up to the other schools.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the Seekonk MA school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Aside from helping make sure that you obtain a premium education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited Massachusetts schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, are different 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. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Seekonk MA school you are enrolled in not only delivers an outstanding education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Massachusetts or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. In addition, contact the Massachusetts school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some regional Seekonk MA 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 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 displeased with the program and dropped out. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Seekonk MA area to help students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs in Massachusetts require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Find out if the schools have associations with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships in the Seekonk MA area.
Pick the Right LPN College Seekonk 02771
Choosing the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse college is arguably the most important first step to beginning a new career in the healthcare field. There are a number of factors that you should consider when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have emphasized within this content, it is critical that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a Licensed Vocational Nurse in Seekonk MA.
Why Did You Decide to Become an LPN?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's advantageous to review questions you could be asked. Among the questions that interviewers frequently ask nursing candidates is "What drove you to pick nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to uncover is not merely the personal reasons you may have for becoming an LPN, but additionally what characteristics and skills you possess that make you good at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, as well as a certain number of routine interview questions, so you need to ready several ideas about how you want to respond to them. Given that there are numerous variables that go into choosing a career, you can answer this primary question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the work interests you as well as the talents you have that make you an exceptional nurse and the ideal candidate for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but write down a few concepts and anecdotes that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Going over sample answers can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to impress the interviewer.
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