LPN to RN Bridge Programs

Are you currently working as a licensed practical nurse and want to pursue your education and career further as an RN? Following this path, you can properly utilize all the educational and clinical tactics that you have learned while working as an LPN. To accomplish this, you can enroll in an LPN to RN bridge program. Once after the successful completion of this course, you can sit for the NCLEX-PN examination. Some roles and responsibilities of both the nursing professionals are similar, but at the same time, they are different on account of numerous measures. Before getting into this, you should be aware of various facts and procedure that one needs to follow in order to transit from a practical nurse to an RN. So, we are here with some common queries related to LPN-RN bridge program.

How Does an LPN Become an RN?

LPN to RN bridge program is a great way to step up from licensed practical nursing. You just need to join an approved bridge program where you can get trained as a smart professional with brilliant critical thinking and problem-solving abilities. A registered nurse has to be extremely interactive with other staff members, patients, and physicians. Also, she/he must be shrewd enough to assess and plan care for the patients in the most prominent ways.

Things You Need to Know about LPN to RN Education

When it comes to a sensitive profession like nursing, it is beneficial for the candidates to have experience of serving patients. Thus, being a licensed practical nurse, it is great to opt for LPN to RN bridge program. You have already been working with nursing assistants, aides, laboratory technicians and other health-care professionals, so you will definitely stand out of the individuals who are unable to tend to a sick or dying patient. All the basic educational skills are taught to the nursing professionals by the LPN programs such as nutrition, hygiene, advanced patient care, daily living, providing the patients with safe medications, wound care, etc. LPN to RN programs are structured with a mindset that licensed practical nurses are already skilled in all these tasks and focus on expert knowledge and autonomy. Some schools even focus on advanced stages of the tasks mentioned above. Other than this, individuals also get to study about advanced physiology, pharmacology, pathology and other important subjects that are compulsory to study to work as an LPN. Some colleges offer Advanced Cardiopulmonary Life Support (ACLS) classes to gain certification before graduation.

Job Outlook for LPN’s Going to Become RN’s

There is not doubt in increasing job demand of nurses all over the United States of America. As per the statistics, there is an augment of 19% in the job outlook for registered nurses is estimated in the country. This rate is quite faster than the other jobs. As per the data of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 2,745,910 employed registered nurses in the U.S. in May 2015. Other than this, the salary of RN professionals is also quite alluring. Thus, a career in this healthcare profession is considered as a beneficial path for aspirants who not only want to serve the people in need but also, desire to set a bright future. Obviously, the candidates who get into registered nursing through the bridge program have their greatest strength as experience. They don’t need to fight against the odds of the job role of a registered nurse. Thus, such candidates have more scope to explore their potentials.

LPN to RN Salary Comparison

Name of the State LPN Annual Mean Salary RN Anuual Mean Salary
Alabama $36,100 $56,890
Alaska $54,400 $88,510
Arizona $49,970 $71,790
Arkansas $36,370 $56,870
California $51,870 $101,260
Colorado $47,530 $69,990
Connecticut $55,630 $55,630
Delaware $49,410 $71,410
District of Columbia $53,100 $79,560
Florida $42,320 $63,960
Georgia $38,820 $63,190
Hawaii $46,820 $90,130
Idaho $39,870 $61,280
Illinois $47,190 $69,760
Indiana $40,730 $58,910
Iowa $39,730 $55,040
Kansas $40,040 $57,410
Kentucky $39,180 $58,770
Louisiana $37,960 $62,450
Maine $42,410 $64,310
Maryland $51,140 $73,200
Massachusetts $54,160 $88,650
Michigan $45,530 $67,690
Minnesota $42,440 $72,310
Mississippi $36,730 $56,980
Missouri $38,380 $59,150
Montana $39,490 $62,650
Nebraska $39,710 $58,970
Nevada $52,630 $81,460
New Hampshire $47,800 $67,190
New Jersey $53,300 $79,840
New Mexico $46,760 $66,030
New York $46,500 $78,950
North Carolina $41,940 $60,460
North Dakota $41,250 $58,890
Ohio $41,060 $62,800
Oklahoma $38,590 $59,040
Oregon $49,160 $83,800
Pennsylvania $44,570 $67,550
Rhode Island $55,230 $76,410
South Carolina $39,410 $61,110
South Dakota $36,270 $55,100
Tennessee $37,270 $57,560
Texas $45,130 $69,890
Utah $43,110 $61,000
Vermont $45,830 $65,840
Virginia $41,190 $65,340
Washington $49,980 $78,130
West Virginia $35,680 $58,010
Wisconsin $43,140 $66,440
Wyoming $44,080 $62,080

LPN to RN Education Options

There are three options available to go for LPN to RN educational bridge programs with certain merits and demerits. Irrespective of whichever you opt, some things are common among them. They are as follows –

  • You must have a GED or high school diploma
  • You must be a graduate from an accredited education program and must have an unrestricted and current licensed practical nursing license.
  • Must have completed a minimum number of clinical hours (as determined by the respective nursing board) and instructions.
  • In the end, all the options make you eligible to sit for the NCLEX-RN exam and gain the licensure as a registered nurse.

LPN to RN Classes & Courses

Most important thing that makes an LPN to RN transition or bridge program an easier option to become a registered nurse is the valuable experience that empowers and gives speed to their further education. Though programs offered by various schools, colleges or universities may vary depending on some factors. Still, most of the concepts that individuals encounter with are same, such as –

  • Understanding the basics of various systems of the body (reproductive, nervous, skeletal, muscular, integumentary, endocrine, digestive, lymphatic, urinary, cardiovascular, and respiratory).
  • Knowledge about the defense mechanisms of the body
  • To know why exercise is important
  • Evolve the general view of the molecular as well as molecular mechanisms of a cell.
  • Knowledge of diversity, evolution, and ecology and their roles on the human physiology.
  • Knowledge of the patterns of evolutionary change that occurs in alleles.
  • Converse about the diversity of living organisms and the way it is related to evolutionary processes.
  • To completely understand human traits, evaluate natural selection as applied to invertebrates, plants, and vertebrates.
  • Go through the evolution completely comprising mechanisms of extinction, adaptive radiation, speciation, and phylogenetic.
  • Knowledge about the structure, development, physiology, and classification of animals that starts with protozoa and terminate with vertebrate mammals.
  • Analyze relationships that organisms hold, specifically microorganisms, with each other and their environment not only on micro but also on macro levels.
  • Advance the practices (evidence-based) related to person- and family-centered care.
  • To maintain strong relationship bonds with patients and their families.
  • Evaluate that nursing has a crucial role to play in the quality feedback cycle as it is related to care.
  • Examine the system, insurance, hospital and policy stakeholders.
  • Analyze work-flow of nurses in different medical conditions.
  • Evaluate top ethical and decision-making models who can guide the aspirants for patient care of high standards.
  • To be a part of a variety of clinical settings with advisers and partners, initially as an observer, and finally with numerous opportunities for autonomy
  • Evaluate and examine various aspects of clinical settings

Is There a Waiting List, How Long Is the Program, and How Much Does It Cost?

According to numerous aspirants, Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree programs in nursing have lengthy waiting lists, so in order to save time and earn money, they prefer to obtain LPN diploma and start practicing as a licensed practical nursing. Meanwhile, they start attending an LPN to RN transition program. This option is somewhat more expensive and long, but it completely depends on the money you earn while waiting. Many schools provide financial aid and scholarships to those who qualify. Also, government forgives loans for the registered nurses who practice in certain areas after completing their graduation. The cost of LPN to RN bridge program depends on the type of institute you choose. Private colleges are quite expensive than public institutes. But, if you opt for a private college, you don’t need to wait for long as they have a short waiting list as compared to government colleges. Since the transition program of registered nurses is quite high in demand thus, institutes are putting more and more programs into effect to overcome the needs of aspirants.

Online LPN to RN Program

If you are going through a busy schedule and don’t have time to attend long classroom lectures, you can opt for an online LPN to RN bridge course. Such programs are quite popular in today’s scenario, and they are getting popular with each day. They are an excellent substitute for traditional methods of gaining education. But, along with many advantages of online programs, there are some cons which make it unsuitable for the expecting nurses. Some of the advantages and disadvantages of online bridge programs are discussed below –

Pros

  1. They are extremely flexible in nature, as aspirants can attend the classes at the time it is suitable for them. Thus, are quite helpful for the working nurses.
  2. They enroll the students at any time of the year and offer class schedules throughout the year.
  3. Online programs are very convenient and save your time to drive, parking and fuel costs. It completely concentrates on learning and education.

Cons

  1. Students who enroll for online bridge program may feel isolated. Since this idea of education does not have a physical place to meet, there is a lack of interaction.
  2. There is a lack of peer interaction, and it can lead you to fall behind. You may not understand various concepts due to this problem and need to retake the classes more than once. Ultimately, this results in the wastage of time.
  3. Some online bridge programs ask for a contract which might be inconvenient for many students. In such cases, you need to pay for the classes that you have not attended.

Both online, as well as offline LPN to RN bridge programs have their own pros and cons. Thus, you should choose the one most suitable for you and allows to get the best out of you.