How to Enroll In a Nursing Program near Blanchard Louisiana
Searching for the right nursing program near Blanchard LA may seem like a complex endeavor, especially if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and assess the qualifications of each college you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate selection. The fact is, too many prospective students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Choosing the least expensive college or the one that is local to your residence is undoubtedly not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are various key additional things to explore before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first review what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, as well as the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical settings, including Blanchard LA hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic duty is to assist doctors in the care of their patients. However, the specific duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization along with where they work. Some of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more complex job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and generally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees to choose from to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Blanchard LA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately achieve a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might want to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is generally a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has obtained one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to check with the Louisiana board of nursing for any state requirements.
LVN and LPN Programs
There are generally two academic credentials offered that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest time period, typically about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides providing a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be Louisiana approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants 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.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at Blanchard LA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from 1 to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount of training directed and that each state has its own requirements. So it’s crucial to make certain that the program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but additionally those for Louisiana or the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training is state approved. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other requirements as well.
Questions to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Once you have chosen which nursing degree to pursue, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Blanchard LA or online, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Louisiana and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school along with the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to helping confirm that you receive an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided in Blanchard LA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are attending not only delivers an exceptional education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Louisiana or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Additionally, contact the Louisiana school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Blanchard LA healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN colleges you are looking at 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 displeased with the program and dropped out. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a superb reputation within the Blanchard LA medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have associations with Blanchard LA hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Online Nursing Programs
Attending nursing programs online is becoming a more preferred way to get training and acquire a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical answer to finding the free time to attend college for many Blanchard LA students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and household obligations have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Blanchard LA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Blanchard Louisiana area. If that is the case, then the following information may prove to be both educational and useful regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Blanchard is located at 32°35′12″N 93°53′15″W / 32.58667°N 93.88750°W / 32.58667; -93.88750 (32.586762, -93.887590).Louisiana Highway 173 passes through the town as Main Street. Downtown Shreveport is 10 miles (16 km) to the southeast.
As of the census of 2000, there were 2,682 people, 787 households, and 602 families residing in the town. The population density was 849.0 people per square mile (328.4/km²). There were 813 housing units at an average density of 336.7 per square mile (130.2/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 95.32% White, 2.93% African American, 0.54% Native American, 0.39% Asian, 0.10% Pacific Islander, 0.10% from other races, and 0.63% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.59% of the population.
There were 787 households out of which 37.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 65.8% were married couples living together, 7.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 23.4% were non-families. 21.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.60 and the average family size was 3.02.
Enroll in the Right Nursing Program near Blanchard LA
Selecting the right registered nursing program is potentially the most critical first step to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are numerous aspects that you need to consider when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, obligations, and financial situation. As we have stressed within this post, it is critical that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the healthcare 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 final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Blanchard LA.
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