How to Select a Nursing Program near New Roads Louisiana
Finding the best nursing college near New Roads LA may feel like a formidable endeavor, particularly if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and evaluate the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many potential students base their determination entirely on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Choosing the least expensive college or the one that is local to your home is most likely not the most reliable way to choose a nursing program. There are various crucial additional things to check into before you determine where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first look at what the job of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, along with the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, such as New Roads LA hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the specific duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization along with where they work. A few of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and typically work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees available to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the New Roads LA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is normally a four year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may wish to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is normally a 2 year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has attained one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Louisiana board of nursing for any state requirements.
LVN and LPN Courses
There are basically two academic credentials available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest time period, usually about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The next option is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with providing a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it should be Louisiana approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at New Roads LA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction mandated and each state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make certain that the course you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but additionally those for Louisiana or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training course is state approved. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other requirements as well.
What to Ask Nursing Programs
Once you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near New Roads LA or on the web, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout Louisiana and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we already discussed, the location of the school and the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other programs.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping ensure that you obtain a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available in New Roads LA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are attending not only provides an outstanding education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Louisiana or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, check with the Louisiana school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some New Roads LA 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 RN 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 unhappy 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 New Roads LA medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with New Roads LA hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Nursing Online Programs
Attending nursing schools online is emerging as a more favored way to obtain training and acquire a nursing degree. Many schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a specified amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend classes for many New Roads LA students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your work and household commitments have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near New Roads LA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater New Roads 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.
New Roads, Louisiana
New Roads (historically French: Poste-de-Pointe-Coupée) is a city in and the parish seat of Pointe Coupee Parish, Louisiana, United States. The center of population of Louisiana is located in New Roads . The population was 4,831 at the 2010 census, down from 4,966 in 2000. The city's ZIP code is 70760. It is part of the Baton Rouge Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Le Poste de Pointe Coupée ("the Pointe Coupée Post" or Cut Point Post) is one of the oldest communities in the Mississippi River Valley established by European colonists. The trading post was founded in the 1720s by settlers from France. It was located upstream from the point crossed by explorers, immediately above but not circled by False River. The name referred to the area along the Mississippi River northeast of what is now New Roads.
The post was initially settled by native French, as well as French-speaking Creoles born in the colony. Additional ethnically French settlers migrated down the Mississippi River from Fort de Chartres, Upper Louisiana. The colonists imported numerous African slaves from the French West Indies (Guadeloupe, Martinique, Saint-Domingue), and many directly from Africa, as workers for the plantations.
Enroll in the Right Nursing Degree near New Roads LA
Enrolling in the right registered nursing college is perhaps the most important step to beginning a new career in the health care field. There are many factors that you need to consider when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have emphasized in this post, it is critical that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in New Roads LA.
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