LPN Program

If you’re interested in working in the nursing field, one of the fasted ways to get started is to become an LPN, or licensed practical nurse. LPNs are also known as LVNs, or licensed vocational nurses, in some states, and no matter what your official job title, it is possible to become this type of nurse in as little as 12 months.

As an LPN, you’ll work under a supervisor who is either a registered nurse (RN) or doctor. Your LPN program will prepare you to complete a number of tasks in the nursing field, and readies you for bridge programs to become and RN or get an advanced degree in nursing, should you choose that option in the future.

Some of the things you’ll learn how to do in your LPN program include the following:

  • Administer most types of medications (the biggest exception is IV push medications, which must be administered by an RN or doctor in most states)
  • Take patient history information
  • Perform basic examinations to measure patients (including recording height, weight, blood pressure, and temperature)
  • Performing emergency life-saving procedures, like CPR
  • Sterilizing exam rooms and equipment
  • Filing medical records properly according to law
  • Assisting patients with dressing, bathing, eating, walking, and preparing for examinations
  • Monitoring long-term care patients
  • Dressing minor wounds
  • Assisting RNs and doctors in more complex procedures
  • Collecting bodily fluid samples for routine lab tests

In addition, LPNs are often asked to step into supervisory roles, so your LPN program may include coursework on management and leadership. LPNs often supervise team of nursing assistants, aids, and orderlies, and they may also help run volunteer or youth internship programs. Good communication skills are a must, because on top of working as a supervisor, you may be the communication link between doctor and patient (or patient’s family). LPNs are often tasked with teaching patients or their families proper care procedures upon leaving the facility for home.

After completing an accredited LPN program, you’ll need to take the National Council Licensure Examination, or NCLEX-PN, in order to work in your state. The exam ensures that you’re ready to work in this field by testing your knowledge of safety, health, and integrity. You can also later seek certifications in specialties such as long-term care or pharmacology, or you can enter an LPN-to-RN program, which will qualify you for more advanced jobs in the field of nursing.

Getting your certification as an LPN is a great way to start in the nursing field. Nurses of all skill levels are in high demand across the United States, even in areas with high rates of unemployment. Hospitals, nursing homes, doctor’s offices, home healthcare services, and many other types of facilities all hire LPNs, so this is a great career choice no matter where you want to work.

Best Online Nursing Schools

Kaplan University
MSN: Nurse Admin
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Kaplan University: Kaplan University is committed to educating the next generation of healthcare professionals via an advanced online environment. The university offers a bachelor's degree and master's degree, which includes the specializations of Nurse Administrator and Nurse Educator. Programs are taught by experienced professionals that bring their real-world skills into the classroom.
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Walden University
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Walden University: Walden University's online nursing programs provide degrees at the bachelor's, master's, and certificate level. Obtain your bachelors in as little as 18 months. Or receive a certificate in Education, Informatics, or Leadership & Management. Programs are dedicated to empowering students to become agents of change in the healthcare field.
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Grand Canyon University
MSN: Nursing Education
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Grand Canyon University: The Grand Canyon University College of Nursing and Health Sciences is a leader in healthcare education in the Southwest. The curriculum features academic and clinical rigor with Christian values to graduate committed healthcare professionals. Bachelor's, Master's, and certificate programs are available.
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University of Cincinnati
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University of Cincinnati": The University of Cincinnati online College of Nursing focuses on the MSN degree, offering specializations in adult nursing, clinical nursing, nurse administration, nurse midwifery, psychiatric and mental health nursing, and women's health nursing. All of the courses are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) and graduates are eligible to take the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) certification examination.
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South University
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South University: South University offers both Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Nursing. The on campus bachelor's program prepares students for careers at acute care hospitals, nursing homes, rehabilitation facilities, and community-based clinics. The online master's program develops clinical teaching skills and research.
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