How to Enroll In an LPN Program in Lake Ariel Pennsylvania
Once you have chosen a fulfilling vocation in the field of nursing, it’s essential that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school in Lake Ariel PA that will deliver the proper instruction. 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 undertake the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their functions do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will talk about in the next segment. When starting their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with those that are the nearest to their homes or that are the least expensive. Although 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 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 cover 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 education and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Functions
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have many different functions that they accomplish in the Lake Ariel PA medical facilities where they practice. As their titles indicate, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Pennsylvania. Although they may be accountable for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The health care facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, such as hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anyplace that you can encounter patients requiring medical care is their domain. Each state not only oversees their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their routine work activities may include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Giving medications
- Initiating IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Supporting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
In addition to their job functions being governed by each state, the Lake Ariel PA health facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Also, they can practice in various specialties of nursing, for instance long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN Programs
There are principally two academic accreditations available in Pennsylvania that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time period, commonly about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The next choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with providing a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of 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 core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Lake Ariel PA, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees
There are several degree options to choose from to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Lake Ariel PA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a two year program offered by Pennsylvania community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more expansive training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at Pennsylvania colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may wish 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 typically a two year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has earned one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing change from state to state, so be sure to check with the Pennsylvania 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 Lake Ariel PA area. The duration 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 mandated to obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction required and every state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only complies with 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 Pennsylvania to make sure that the training 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 additional requirements as well.
Nursing Online Degrees
Enrolling in nursing programs online is becoming a more favored way to get instruction and attain a nursing degree. Certain Lake Ariel PA area schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a specific number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical approach to finding the time to attend school for many students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your work and family commitments have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Colleges
Once you have selected which nursing degree to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Pennsylvania and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously mentioned, the site of the school relative to Lake Ariel PA and the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the first two factors that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares to the other programs.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the Lake Ariel PA school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to helping ensure that you receive an excellent education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited Pennsylvania 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) along with 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 imperative that the Lake Ariel PA school you are enrolled in not only provides an outstanding education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Pennsylvania or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. In addition, check with the Pennsylvania school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some regional Lake Ariel PA 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 schools 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 imperative 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 contacts in the Lake Ariel PA area to help students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs in Pennsylvania require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships in the Lake Ariel PA area.
Choose the Right LPN College Lake Ariel 18436
Enrolling in the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse program is potentially the most important step to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are many factors that you must take into account when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, obligations, and financial situation. As we have pointed out in this article, it is critical that you select an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding 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 final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Lake Ariel PA.
Why Did You Decide to Be a Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing position, it's helpful to consider questions you could be asked. Among the questions that hiring managers typically ask nursing prospects is "What made you decide on nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not merely the personal reasons you may have for becoming a nurse, but also what qualities and talents you have that make you good at your profession. You will probably be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, as well as a certain number of typical interview questions, so you should ready several ideas about how you would like to respond to them. Since there are numerous factors that go into selecting a career, you can address this fundamental question in a number of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you in addition to the abilities you have that make you an excellent nurse and the perfiect choice for the job. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but write down a few concepts and talking points that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to enthuse the recruiter.
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