Can I challenge the LVN exam? - page 2

by Blondie2008

26,403 Views | 25 Comments

i had a quick question for you. i am in school to be a medical assistant and i was wondering if after i finish, can i challenge the lvn/lpn exam. my boyfriend was in the navy as a coreman and they were allowed to challenge it and... Read More


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    As far as I know (that is, unless things have changed fairly recently), only two states allow military corpsmen to challenge the NCLEX-PN -- Oklahoma and California. However, there are restrictions -- people who are licensed in that way cannot (ever) endorse their licenses to any other states; the licenses are only good in the state that issued them. (Someone please correct me if I'm wrong about this!)

    *** I challenged the LVN boards in Ca based on being a medic in the army then later endorsed my license to Wisconsin.

    The reason the corpsmen are allowed to challenge (again, in those two states only) is because, while corpsmen may be considered "medical assistants" in a semantic sense, the reality is that military corpsmen do a whole lot more than CMAs do in the civilian world, and those two states wanted to offer corpsmen a reasonable opportunity to convert their military experience into a civilian career (which they otherwise wouldn't have; the military "corpsman" role doesn't really correspond to any established healthcare occupation in the civilian world)

    *** More like a combination of a paramedic, LVN, community health nurse, and in the case of independant duty corpsmen or army 18D, a PA

    And, the corpsmen are the only people allowed to challenge the NCLEX without having completed an approved (by the state BON) nursing program. If you want to be a nurse (whether LPN or RN), you're going to have to go to nursing school!

    *** I don't know if you are including army medics when you say "corpsmen" but they can (or used to be able to) challenge in Ca for sure, I did. I know of navy corpsmen, coast guard corpsmen, and army medics who have challenged the LVN boards in Ca. All passed no problem BTW. Now as an RN with ICU experience I fully believe I could have challened and passed the NCLEX-RN had I been allowed to. With the exception of nursing diagnosis and the "nursing process" (wich I learned but under a different name) I didn't learn anything in RN school I haden't already learned as an army medic (4 years field medic, two years burn ICU as a medic).
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    Quote from PMFB-RN
    *** I don't know if you are including army medics when you say "corpsmen" but they can (or used to be able to) challenge in Ca for sure, I did. I know of navy corpsmen, coast guard corpsmen, and army medics who have challenged the LVN boards in Ca. All passed no problem BTW. Now as an RN with ICU experience I fully believe I could have challened and passed the NCLEX-RN had I been allowed to. With the exception of nursing diagnosis and the "nursing process" (wich I learned but under a different name) I didn't learn anything in RN school I haden't already learned as an army medic (4 years field medic, two years burn ICU as a medic).
    I did mean to include medics, etc., in my comments -- I have never been in the military and am not familiar with all the precise terminology used by the different branches. I was using the term "military corpsmen" generically. I'm also glad to hear that you were able to endorse your license -- I'm happy to be corrected on that point.
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    What in the world is the school you're going to teaching you. If they are teaching you in ANY way that you are "like" a nurse you better get it straight right now ...... you are not. A military cormen, does things in the feild to save lives, they are about caring for pt's in war situations. They do things that even nurses arn't allowed to do in hospitals. It's a whole different world. Unless they are teaching military core men to do front office, do b/p's and keep records for a Dr. then I would say no. I'm so tired of these schools graduating people that think they are "nurses".
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    Hi blondie, just wanted to let you know in regards to challenging the boards. I think it depends on the state you live in. In california I challenged the boards as a CNA as I had 50 months of acute care experience which is one of the requirements for california. The best way to find out is to locate your state boards as previously suggested.
    neenapatt likes this.
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    ok, well, i am a navy corpsman and when i was back in san diego, i had the package to challenge the lvn exam, but many moves and deployments later, i can't find it...even online i can't find it. if someone could point me in the right direction that would be great. Thank you. You can PM me.
    Jesse
    Last edit by elkpark on Apr 3, '08 : Reason: Removed personal e-mail addy from post. Violation of TOS.
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    most states have strict requirements on the amount of study that is required to take liscenure tests
    i am sure that some of the military have sufficient experience/knowledge to know what is taught in nursing schools but some of these spend their work in clinic like settings where they take v/s, h/p, and write down complaints of patients
    the states can't tell the difference, which accounts for the very few states willing to allow these challenges
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    ok, so do you know of any websites i could go to that have information on it?
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    The only people that can challenge the PN exam and only for CA, are those that were medics in the military. This is the only exception made to the rule. Please be aware that by getting the LVN license in CA, you will be unable to use it in any other state as it will not be acceped for licensure for you to endorse. The only way it can be used in other states is if you work for a VA facility.

    Please contact the Board in CA that handles the LVN license and they will tell you of the specific information that you will need to provide for them to be able to take the exam. It will require some documentation specific to what you did in the military.

    Best of luck to you, and it can be done.
    wannabesedated likes this.
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    You may have been able to endorse the LPN license in the past, but that is not the case any longer that I have heard of. The NCLEX exam has reciprocity but the licenses do not. And the individual must meet the educational requirements of the new state. And the military training is not accepted by the others.

    Same thing with the 30 credit program that CA offers for the RN, it is not accepted for licensure in any other state without having completed at least the needed courses to get the ADN.
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    Actually, I just checked the OK rules dated 7/01/07, and OK still also allows some military medical personnel to challenge the NCLEX-PN:

    "(B) has completed an equivalent level of training as a military medic. The following
    levels of training have been evaluated and determined to be equivalent training:
    (i) U.S. Army 91WM6 (previously known as 91C)
    (ii) Air Force Medical Service Specialist 4NO51 (previously known as 90250) or 4NO71 (previously known as 90270), with further evaluation to verify that training included content on mental health, and classroom instruction and clinical experience in care of the adult, care of the child, and maternal-newborn nursing;"

    (From the requirements to be eligible for licensure by examination (PN) from the most current rules posted on the OK BON website: http://www.youroklahoma.com/nursing/rules.html)

    The main websites for the BONs of all 50 states can be accessed from right here at allnurses; just go to the upper right corner of the screen, click on the "Resources" tab, and then click on "Boards of Nursing" -- that will take you to a listing of all the BONs, with links to the websites.


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