How to Choose an LPN School in Clintwood Virginia
Now that you have decided on a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it’s essential that you find a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program in Clintwood VA that will provide the appropriate training. 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 undertake the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their duties do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the next segment. When initiating their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with those that are the closest to their residences or that are the least expensive. Although cost and location are significant considerations, they are not the only criteria that you should base your decision on. Other concerns, such as 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 potential schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will cover later in this article. But first, 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 Duties
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have many different functions that they carry out in the Clintwood VA healthcare facilities where they are employed. As their titles signify, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Virginia. While they may be accountable for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, such as hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can find patients in need of medical care is their dominion. Each state not only regulates their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their daily job activities can include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Administering medications
- Starting IV drips
- Observing patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Managing patient records
- Supporting doctors or RNs with procedures
Along with their occupational responsibilities being mandated by each state, the Clintwood VA medical facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can additionally limit their job duties within those parameters. Also, they can work in different specialties of nursing, which include long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN Certificates and Degrees
There are basically two scholastic accreditations offered in Virginia that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest amount of time, usually about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next 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 complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they provide more transferrable 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 warrants that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Clintwood VA, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees available to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in just 2 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 available in the Clintwood VA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a 2 year program made available by Virginia community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is usually a four year program offered at Virginia colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified 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 job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is typically a 2 year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example 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) so as to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Virginia board of nursing for any state mandates.
Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Clintwood VA area. The length of the training program can take anywhere from one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction required and every state has its own requirements. So it’s important to make certain that the program you enroll in not only fulfills 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 Virginia to make certain that the training is state approved. In addition to 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.
Nursing Online Training
Attending nursing colleges online is growing into a more in demand way to obtain instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Many Clintwood VA area schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend classes for some students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, 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. So if your job and household responsibilities have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Programs
Once you have determined which nursing degree to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Virginia and the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier discussed, the location of the school relative to Clintwood VA and the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two factors that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate 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 in addition to the Clintwood VA school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping make sure that you receive a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided for non-accredited Virginia schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, vary 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 completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the Clintwood VA school you are enrolled in not only provides an exceptional education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Virginia or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Visit online rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Also, get in touch with the Virginia school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some nearby Clintwood VA healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions are of the schools as well.
Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the LPN colleges 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 essential 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 Clintwood VA area to help students gain employment.
Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs in Virginia require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships in the Clintwood VA area.
Pick the Right LPN Course Clintwood 24228
Selecting the best Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most crucial first step to launching a new career in the medical care field. There are a number of factors that you need to think about when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have emphasized within this post, it is important that you select an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to choose 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 Practical Nurse in Clintwood VA.
Why Did You Desire to Be a Nurse?When getting ready to interview for a nursing position, it's a good idea to review questions you might be asked. One of the things that interviewers typically ask nursing candidates is "What compelled you to select nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not just the private reasons you might have for being a nurse, but also what characteristics and skills you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, in addition to a certain number of typical interview questions, so you must prepare several ideas about how you want to respond to them. Since there are numerous factors that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this primary question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you as well as the abilities you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the ideal candidate for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but take down a few concepts and anecdotes that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can assist you to prepare your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to impress the interviewer.
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