How to Find the Right LPN School near Elwood Illinois
Once you have decided on a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near Elwood IL that will furnish the appropriate instruction. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, 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 guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their duties do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the following section. When starting their search for LPN schools, many future nursing students begin with those that are the nearest to their residences or that are the least costly. While cost and location are important factors, they are not the only criteria that you should base your decision on. Other concerns, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important also. There are additional questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in an LPN program that we will cover later in this article. But to start with, let’s have a look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
What is an LPN in Elwood IL?
Licensed Practical Nurses have a number of tasks that they perform in the Elwood IL health facilities where they are employed. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Illinois. While they may be accountable for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and varied, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can find patients requiring medical assistance is their dominion. Every state not only controls their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their day-to-day work functions may include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Administering medicines
- Starting IV drips
- Observing patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Managing patient records
- Supporting physicians or RNs with procedures
Along with their work functions being mandated by each state, the health facilities or other Elwood IL healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. In addition, they can work in various specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN Programs in Illinois
There are generally two academic credentials available that provide instruction to become an LPN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest amount of time, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The second choice is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you seek, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Online LPN Programs
Enrolling in LPN programs online is emerging as a more popular way to receive training and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Elwood IL. Many schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating solution to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your work and household responsibilities have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online LPN training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask LPN Programs
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 realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Elwood IL as well as within Illinois and throughout the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously discussed, the location of the school along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two things that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the field.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the certificate program as well as the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping ensure that you receive an excellent education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited schools near Elwood IL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for LPNs differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Illinois or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the LPN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Also, get in touch with the Illinois school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Elwood IL 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 schools you are looking at what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a favorable reputation within the Elwood IL medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with local Elwood IL community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Considering LPN School in Elwood Illinois?
Elwood is located at 41°24′49″N 88°6′38″W / 41.41361°N 88.11056°W / 41.41361; -88.11056 (41.413615, -88.110438). The nearest major highways are Interstate 80 to the north and Interstate 55 to the west. The former Route 66 highway passes through the village on the east side. According to the 2010 census, Elwood has a total area of 6.53 square miles (16.91 km2), all land.
As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 2,279 people, 880 households, and 630 families residing in the village. The racial makeup of the village was 94.9 percent White, 1.5 percent African American, 0.1 percent Native American, 0.5 percent Asian, 0.06 percent Pacific Islander, 2.2 percent from other races, and 0.8 percent from two or more races. Hispanics and Latinos of any race were 6.3 percent of the population.
There were 880 households out of which 35.2 percent had children under the age of 18 living within, 58.3 percent were husband-wife family living together, 9.2 percent had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.4 percent were non-families. 24.1 percent of all households were made up of individuals and 28.4 percent had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.59 and the average family size was 3.08.
In the village, the age distribution of the population shows 25.5 percent under the age of 18 and 15.4 percent who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37.8 years. 50.8 percent of the populations was female while 49.8 percent was male.
Select the Right LPN School near Elwood IL
Enrolling in the right Licensed Practical Nurse program is arguably the most critical step to beginning a new career in the healthcare industry. There are various factors that you must consider when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have stressed within this article, it is essential that you select an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become an LPN in Elwood IL.
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