Enrolling in an online LPN program in Florida is a great way to learn the skills you need to start or advance your nursing career—especially if you’re currently working, raising a family, or have other major responsibilities. Although you can’t complete your training completely online, hybrid programs are available where you can take general coursework remotely and get clinical training on-campus. In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, some campus-based programs have also moved their classes online, so you can take advantage of the flexibility these schools are currently offering.
Continue reading for more information on what you can expect from online LPN programs in Florida. You’ll also find a list of programs approved by the Florida Board of Nursing, learn the steps to become licensed in the state after you have completed your studies, and see how much you can make as a practical nurse in Florida.
What Are Online LPN Programs in Florida Like?
Licensed practical nursing is a rigorous profession that demands workers to provide several kinds of basic patient care, from monitoring blood pressure to bathing to recordkeeping. In order to train people for this important job, online LPN programs in Florida provide classes in fundamental nursing topics—such as pharmacology, medical terminology, and anatomy and physiology—and then students move on to in-person clinical training at a health care facility. For example, at Herzing University, students complete their general education classes online, but they have to finish most of their training on campus so they can receive nursing theory combined with practical skills. For more details about how online and hybrid LPN programs work, see EduMed’s main online LPN program page.
Florida LPN Program Online Spotlights
When looking for an online LPN program in Florida, you need not only a school that can teach you the right skills and knowledge, but also one that’s affordable, has a flexible class schedule, and provides excellent student support. You also need a program that you can trust, which is why we have compiled a list of some of the best accredited online LPN programs in the Florida that have been fully-approved by the Florida Board of Nursing—meaning they have gotten the stamp of approval for their quality education and can properly prepare you to take the NCLEX-PN exam after graduation. Review the schools below to get an idea of what they have to offer.
LPN Licensing Details and Requirements in Florida
Getting an LPN license is mandatory to work in Florida, so it’s imperative that you understand exactly what the state expects of professionals in order to get and maintain their license. The section below contains information on the Florida Board of Nursing’s LPN licensing requirements.
Complete a nursing education program from a Florida-approved or accredited institution
According to Section 464.003 of the 2017 Florida Statutes, students should have a degree from either an accredited nursing school or a state-approved one. According to the law, accredited refers to a program that is given this designation from a nursing accrediting agency recognized by the United States Secretary of Education. An approved nursing program refers to one that has been accepted by the state’s Board of Nursing based on the quality of its curriculum. The Florida Department of Health provides a list of approved Florida LPN programs on their website.
Submit to Electronic Fingerprinting
The state requires that nursing license applicants get their fingerprints taken by a Live Scan service provider and have them submitted to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement in order to determine if they have a criminal history. People are required to pay a fee for this service, which is determined by the individual provider.
Disclose Criminal History if Applicable
An applicant who has been convicted of, or pled guilty or no contest to, a charge that isn’t a minor traffic offense should disclose that information to the nursing board on their application. In addition, they may be required to submit arrest records from the court, proof of probation completion, a letter explaining the nature of their crime, and three to five letters of recommendation from people they have worked with.
Pass the NCLEX-PN Examination
In order to take the NCLEX-PN examination, prospective LPNs should register through testing vendor Pearson VUE. Before taking the test, prospective LPNs are required to undergo a background check, which includes submitting their fingerprints and disclosing to the Florida Board of Nursing any criminal convictions that they have on their record. After getting approval from the Board, people can go on to take the exam and if they pass, they will receive their license within seven to 10 days. The fee for taking the test is $200 and the licensing application fee is $110.
Keep your license up-to-date and fulfill continuing education requirements
LPNs are required to renew their license every two years. In order to do this, professionals are expected to complete 30 hours of continuing education and report the courses they took to tracking platform CEBroker.com. Some of the topics covered in continuing education courses include domestic violence, medical error prevention, education laws and rules, and end of life care. When they apply, nurses should submit a $75 fee, which can be waived if the LPN is a member of the military or volunteers their services to medically indigent patients.
Job Outlook and Salary Details for LPNs in Florida
Once you have graduated from your LPN program in Florida and earned your state license, it’s time to jump into your career—so you need to know what the professional landscape looks like. This section will give you an idea of LPN employment in the state, as well as the salary you may earn when you land a job.
Are Florida LPNs in high demand?
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the future for licensed practical nurses in Florida is bright and growth between 2018 and 2028 is expected to significantly exceed the national average—11.9 percent compared to 5.2 percent respectively. Another reason it’s a great time for people to pursue an LPN career is because of the shortage of professionals in Florida. According to the Supply and Demand Projections of the Nursing Workforce: 2014-2030 report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Bureau of Health Workforce, if the number of people in the profession continues as it currently is, by 2030, there will be a 12.3 percent deficit in worker supply available to meet the state’s demand.
Job Outlook for Licensed Practical Nurses in Florida
|Employment (2018)||New Jobs (2018-2028)||Job Growth Rate (2018-2028)||Average Annual Openings (2018-2028)|
Source: Projections Central
How much do LPNs make in Florida?
When people graduate from LPN degree programs in Florida, they can get a good return on their time and financial investment because they are qualified for jobs that pay healthy, competitive salaries—particularly if they are located in metropolitan areas. The table below outlines the hourly and annual wages of LPNs on the state level, as well as in different large cities.
Annual Earnings for Licensed Practical Nurses in Florida
|Median Hourly Wage||Mean Hourly Wage||Annual Mean Wage|
|Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach||$22.88||$22.99||$47,810|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2019
Resources for LPN Students and Nurses in Florida
- Association of Practical Nurse Educators of Florida This organization is for both current educators and LPNs who are interested in using their expertise to become an educator.
- Continuing Education Courses for Florida Nurses This site from NetCE allows LPNs to find and enroll in continuing education classes that Florida requires.
- Florida Administrative Code and Administrative Register This page includes information on the Florida laws that apply to nurses in the state.
- Nursing Jobs LPNs looking for employment can find job leads on this page of the Florida Nurses Association’s website.
- Review of Florida Nurse Education Program Graduate Passage Rates on the National Council of State Boards of Nursing Licensure Examination: Calendar Year 2018 This report from the Florida Board of Nursing includes data on the NCLEX passage rates of graduates from schools around the state.