How to Pick the Best LPN Training near West Point Iowa
Now that you have chosen a fulfilling career in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you find a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near West Point IA that will provide the necessary education. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, except for the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their responsibilities do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will cover in the following section. When initiating their search for schools, many future nursing students begin with the ones that are the closest to their residences or that are the least expensive. While tuition and location are significant factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other variables, such as if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important too. There are various other questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN course that we will talk about later in this article. But first, let’s have a look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
What is an LPN?
Licensed Practical Nurses have numerous functions that they carry out in the West Point IA health care facilities where they are employed. As their titles signify, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Iowa. While they may be responsible for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The healthcare facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anyplace that you can find patients seeking medical treatment is their dominion. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their everyday work activities might include:
- Taking vital signs
- Providing medications
- Initiating IV drips
- Observing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Helping doctors or RNs with procedures
Along with their job functions being regulated by each state, the medical facilities or other West Point IA healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. In addition, they can practice in various specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are generally two academic credentials available that provide training to become an LPN near West Point IA. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time frame, generally about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd alternative is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and commonly require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides supplying a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type 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 warrants that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Online LPN Programs
Attending LPN programs online is becoming a more favored way to get training and attain a nursing certificate or degree in West Point IA. Some schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient solution to finding the time to attend college for some 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 lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your job and family commitments have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online LPN training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Questions to Ask LPN Schools
Now that you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near West Point IA as well as within Iowa and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we already pointed out, the site of the school along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will consider. 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 certificate program in addition to the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping verify that you obtain a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited schools near West Point IA.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for LPNs differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are attending not only provides an outstanding education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Iowa or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the LPN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Additionally, check with the Iowa school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some local West Point IA 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a favorable reputation within the West Point IA medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified 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 local West Point IA community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Vocational Nursing Programs West Point Iowa
Choosing the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse program is arguably the most critical first step to starting a new career in the medical care field. There are numerous factors that you should think about when selecting a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have stressed within this post, it is critical that you enroll in an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. You originally decided to visit this website because of an interest in Vocational Nursing Programs and wanting to get more information on the topic Weekend LPN Programs. However, by using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become an LPN in West Point IA.
More Nursing Locations in Iowa
West Point, Iowa
As of the census of 2010, there were 966 people, 432 households, and 267 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,583.6 inhabitants per square mile (611.4/km2). There were 452 housing units at an average density of 741.0 per square mile (286.1/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 99.1% White, 0.3% African American, 0.1% Asian, and 0.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.9% of the population.
There were 432 households of which 26.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.6% were married couples living together, 6.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.9% had a male householder with no wife present, and 38.2% were non-families. 33.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.17 and the average family size was 2.71.
The median age in the city was 44.2 years. 20.7% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.8% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 23.6% were from 25 to 44; 26.3% were from 45 to 64; and 22.7% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 47.2% male and 52.8% female.