How to Choose an LPN Program near Waterford Connecticut
Now that you have chosen a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you find a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program near Waterford CT that will provide the right instruction. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, 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 responsibilities do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will cover in the next segment. When beginning their search for LPN schools, many future nursing students start with the ones that are the closest to their homes or that are the least costly. Even though tuition and location are significant factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other concerns, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important also. There are additional questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in an LPN program that we will address later in this article. But to start with, let’s have a look at the function of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
What is an LPN in Waterford CT?
Licensed Practical Nurses have a number of duties that they perform in the Waterford CT medical facilities where they practice. As their titles imply, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Connecticut. While they may be responsible for monitoring Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The medical facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, for instance hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can find patients requiring medical care is their domain. Each state not only controls their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their routine work activities might include:
- Taking vital signs
- Administering medications
- Initiating IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Supporting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their work duties being governed by each state, the health care facilities or other Waterford CT healthcare providers where LPNs work can additionally limit their job roles within those parameters. Additionally, they can practice in various specialties of nursing, which include long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN Programs in Connecticut
There are generally two academic credentials offered that provide training to become an LPN. The one that can be completed in the shortest period of time, typically about twelve months, 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 commonly require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with supplying a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you seek, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the syllabus properly 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 acquire a nursing certificate or degree in Waterford CT. Certain 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 may be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend classes for some students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your job and household responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online LPN training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask LPN Programs
Once you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, as well as if you will attend classes on campus or online, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges near Waterford CT as well as within Connecticut and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school as well as the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the field.
- 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. Aside from helping verify that you obtain a premium education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools near Waterford CT.
- 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) together 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 important that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Connecticut or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. In addition, check with the Connecticut school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Waterford CT 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 programs 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a good reputation within the Waterford CT healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal 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. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Check if the schools have associations with local Waterford CT community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Considering LPN School in Waterford Connecticut?
Waterford is a town in New London County, Connecticut, United States. It is named after Waterford, Ireland. The population was 19,517 at the 2010 census.  The town center is listed as a census-designated place (CDP) and had a population of 2,887 at the 2010 census.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 44.6 square miles (115.4 km2), of which 32.8 square miles (84.9 km2) is land and 11.8 square miles (30.5 km2), or 26.43%, is water. The town center CDP has a total area of 1.9 square miles (4.9 km2), all land. Waterford is bordered on the west by the Niantic River.
Other minor communities and geographic features are Dufree Hill, East Neck, Fog Plain, Gilead, Goshen, Great Neck, Harrisons, Lake's Pond, Logger Hill, Mago Point, Magonk, Mullen Hill, Oswegatchie, Pepperbox Road, Pleasure Beach, Ridgewood Park, Riverside Beach, Spithead, Strand, West Neck.
The first people emigrated from England in 1637, and came to the New London and Waterford area (at the time, this land was called West Farms). One of the first people who set sail for this area was John Winthrop, Jr. Waterford got its name for its proximity to being in between two rivers. The residents of Waterford resided in wigwams until they dug up plots for 38 houses near the Great Neck area. John Winthrop was given several hundred acres of land, including Millstone Point and Alewife Cove. Various dams, mills, and ponds were constructed in these area. The only expansion of people in the Waterford-New London area were the growth of families and children. Later on, more people immigrated to Waterford, including the Welsh, Italian, Russian, Irish, and Scottish.
Select the Right LPN Program near Waterford CT
Deciding on the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse program is arguably the most important step to launching a new career in the medical care industry. There are numerous factors that you must consider when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have emphasized in this post, it is essential that you select an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to pick 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 Waterford CT.
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