If you're interested in becoming a LPN (Licensed Practical Nurse), LPN programs are offered by vocational, technical schools or community/junior colleges. Most programs have 1-2 year duration, depending on which state or school, with a job prospect outlook that varies by industry.
Individuals interested in nursing as a career and wishing to apply for LPN programs who are still at school should choose school level (from 8th grade and up) subjects in chem, psyche, algebra, bio, phys-ed, first aid, health and nutrition, computer literacy, history, geometry, English and further specialties such as childhood development and EMT.
LPN programs and further nursing career advancement qualifications must filter through The State Board Council of National Nurses (NCSBN). This entity educates, serves and offers research via a partnership, which promotes regulations for the safety of the patient as well as to protect the public. When embarking on the process of continuing education in nursing its important to understand which official bodies set the standards for LPN license requirements and adherence.
Official Nursing Centers and Boards
In order to offer the best services to the public, all the jurisdictional members of the NCSBN demand that individuals who wish to attain their licenses must pass the exam measuring the high level of competence required to be active on an entry level. For LPN programs and other qualifications, NCSBN has developed 2 exams for this process: the RN National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses and NCLEX for Practical Nurses which are utilized by the nursing board when making a licensing decision.
NCLEX-PN Or NCLEX-RN Licensure Examinations
Doing this exam PN or RN NCLEX, will be the foundation to a nurses' studies and completing it will show competence fundamental to ones nursing career. While focusing on preparing for the NCLEX, learners may also need to prep for the exam process itself, via available NCLEX tips and guidance.
The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC)
The Nurses Credentialing Center in America (ANCC) website explains its subsidiary status as the US Association of Nurses (ANA), which offers both the individual and organization in the profession of nursing unlimited resources required to attain excellence of practice.
The ANCC's globally recognised credentialing LPN programs and further academic qualifications offer nurse certification in areas of specialized practice; the recognition of organizations in healthcare to promote safe settings and the accreditation of the provider for the continuance of education. The organization is the most highly accredited and recognized international whose exams certify nurse skill and ability. Over ¼ of a million nursing candidates have received certification as of '90.
LPN programs such as excellence pathway recognition offered for this qualification and other designations, are earned to inspire offering an environment where nurses can grow. This award assists to back the nurses themselves and guides them to screened workplaces. ANCC's Credentialing Innovation Institute offers many serviced in education to nurses who wish to gain certification via their registered and trademarked products such as the Pathway Designation.
LPN Programs: What To Expect
LPNs need to be brave since they may need to enter into environments where there are dangers such as radiation and diseases which are infectious, as well as chemical poisons. Back injuries can be sustained from moving patients and stress induced by heavy workloads. Patience is needed to deal with the individuals in need of care since they may be confused, agitated, or uncooperative.
There are extensive physical and mental requirements, over and above basic education needs underpinning LPN requirements. An LPN program entrance exam allocates a certain amount of time to science, math and verbal skills and questions. The Essential Skills Test of an Academic nature (TEAS) is an assessment in the form of multiple choice which lists fundamental math, science, English and verbal skills capabilities. The elements under assessment in this test are chosen by the nurse educator to be relevant to measuring basic skills sets for those who wish to enter the nursing program.
LPN program entrance exam qualifications done via TEAS require a test Time Limit of 209 minutes and consists of a four-option multiple-choice with 170 total questions (calculators may not be used for the test.) Results are available 48 hours after completion and there are TEAS® Test Study Guides available for preparation. There are also TEAS® Test Flashcards to assist with preparation on an in-depth basis for their test.
As far as careers go, opportunities as an LPN and a need for LPN jobs are primarily due to replacement needs, substituting those who leave permanently. LPN or licensed vocational nurses provide professional assistance and services to the ill, injured, or disabled as supervised by doctors and RN's.
Working environments of LPN's include various health care facilities that include dentist's offices, public health facilities, hospitals, institutions for mental health, residential homes, and community clinics. These are the settings that LPN programs will prepare the student to be a part of and where practical study hours will take place.
In '08, licensed practical and licensed vocational nurses held several hundred thousand jobs and employment of LPNs is expected to grow by 21 percent over the following next ten years. There is also a perceived in adequacy in rural areas and as a result, those willing to relocate would experience better job prospects. LPN programs are available for students who wish to full this gap in the market.
A primary cause for the growing need is the elderly, who have an increased incidence of injury and illness, which in turn increases demand for healthcare services. With advancements in medical technology, people live longer which also increases the demand for long-term healthcare.
LPN Program Subjects And Further Qualifications
State and job setting vary supervision and directional practices. Such as being permitted to administer prescribed medicines, start IV's and care for patients who are dependent on ventilators. LPN programs will include course material, which will equip candidates with the ability to perform the following duties which will form part of an LPN job description:
- offering care to bed-ridden patients;
- recording patient information and data such as pulse rate, blood pressure, weight, height, vital signs and respiration;
- preparing and administering enemas, injections, taking care of wounds and monitoring catheters;
- giving massages and alcoholic rubs and assisting with dressing, hygiene, bathing, feeding and movement within the patients' range and capability;
- LPNs who have experience can also provide supervision for aides and assistants;
- collecting test samples, performing lab tests as well as keeping records of fluid and food intake;
- cleaning medical equipment and monitoring;
- assisting doctors and RN's to do procedures and tests;
- work in maternity wards and care for infants.
LPN programs can serve Certified Nurses and LPN Paramedics to take the next step in their careers. Further options include LPN to BSN and LPN to RN qualifications. LPN Programs will equip the learner to conduct patient monitoring and reporting of reaction to treatment and medicines. This information will then be used to fill out forms for insurance as well as to authorize referral documents. An administrative component is thus essential. This information will then be shared with RN's and physicians to decide which route to take for the cure. LPNs work across disciplines in clinical, residential and general practitioner settings.
Types of Nursing Degrees for continuing education specialization in LPN programs include:
- Nursing Masters - BSN
- Nursing MSN - RN
- Nursing Education Certificates in Post-Masters
- PhD in Administration (Higher Education)
- PhD Phil Nursing
- Advanced nursing practice (APN)
- Midwife certification (CNM)
- Anaesthetist certified and registered (CRNA)
- Clinical Specialist Nurse (CNS)
- Nursing Practitioner (NP)
LPN programs will also teach candidates in a nurses care facility how to consider and evaluate the needs of the local residents. This includes developing plans of care and the supervision of assistants and aides. In physicians' offices and the clinical setting, an LPN would oversee the appointment schedule, do record processes and other administrative procedures. Those working in residential care could even cook food and direct families to perform easier nursing duties.
Online LPN programs and schools also offer refresher courses of self-study for students who wish to activate a license which has become inactive and freshen their expertise and skills in order to go back to the work environment. LPN's work for forty hours a week and in some settings patients need 24 hr care so LPNs schedule entails working evenings, on the weekend and public holidays. LPN's are often on their feet for long and need to assist patients with strenuous physical requirements.
For qualification and LPN entrance criteria into LPN programs, a diploma from high school forms a part of the criteria to enter, however some programs may allow this without the diploma and others fall under the school curriculum. The nursing programs that last for one year combine study in classrooms with practical in-clinic training under supervision.
Classroom study will cover basic fundamental concepts of nursing as well as topics relating to caring for the patients such as:
- Basic nutrition
- Body physiology
- Surgical nursing
- Pharma and
- First aid
When practicing in the clinic, service is normally at the hospital and can also be in settings such as residential or doctors rooms. LPNs have the option of gaining credentials via post-LPN programs which offer specialties such as intravenous therapy as well as gerontology and longer-term care.