How to Select the Best Phlebotomy School
Choosing the ideal phlebotomist school near Coffee Springs AL is a critical initial step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging undertaking to investigate and compare each of the training options that are accessible to you. However it’s important that you perform your due diligence to make certain that you receive a quality education. In reality, a large number of students begin their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Yet another option you may consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We’ll review a bit more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to remember is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and should be part of your decision process also. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you choose the right one for you. But before we do that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online schools.
Should You Train to Be a Phlebotomy Tech?
First of all, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The basic definition is a health care professional who draws blood from patients. We will provide more details later. So naturally anyone who chooses this profession must be comfortable with blood and needles. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Coffee Springs AL medical environments, well this profession probably is not right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians routinely work around nervous people who don’t like needles or having their blood taken. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be expected to work weekends, nights and even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the blood and needles, and if you enjoy helping people and are compassionate and very patient, this could be the right profession for you.
Phlebotomy Tech Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their main duty, there is actually much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to check that the instruments being used are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample must be correctly labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork must be accurately filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Coffee Springs AL labs and are responsible for making certain that samples are analyzed correctly using the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient responsibilities, they can be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The quickest response is wherever patients are treated. Their workplaces are numerous and diverse, such as Coffee Springs AL hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting samples from a certain type of patient. For example, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be drawing blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would work with new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Licensing and Certification
There are basically two kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to finish and offers a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomist. Available at junior and community colleges, they typically require two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a 4 year program furnish a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not mandated in the majority of states, most Coffee Springs AL employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. Some of the key certifying agencies include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are some states that do require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, such as Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a premium education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Colleges
To begin with, let’s resolve one possible misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant portion of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-clinical part of the training can be accessed online, it could be a more convenient alternative for many Coffee Springs AL students. As an additional benefit, a number of online colleges are more affordable than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy school you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can receive a quality education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online might be the right choice for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Now that you have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the college is important if you will be commuting from Coffee Springs AL in addition to the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online program. All of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for selecting a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you need to ask about each of the colleges you are considering prior to making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Alabama? As mentioned previously, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s very important to select a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you pick should be accredited by a reputable regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited school aside from a guarantee of a quality education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to sit for a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to prospective employers in the Coffee Springs AL job market.
What is the School’s Reputation? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s important to check the reputations of all colleges you are reviewing. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can screen online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also contact some Coffee Springs AL clinics or hospitals that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Included? First, contact the state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums may signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internships Included? Ask the colleges you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional medical facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on clinical training often not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Coffee Springs AL healthcare community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the school has both a good reputation along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Coffee Springs AL medical community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it’s important to verify that the ultimate program you pick offers classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is particularly true if you opt to still work while going to college. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Coffee Springs AL, make sure they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option also. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is in case you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
How To Choose Phlebotomy Training Coffee Springs Alabama
Making sure that you select the ideal phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this rewarding health care field. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomy training programs can be available in a wide range of academic institutions, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive array of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Course options may differ somewhat from state to state as every state has its own prerequisites when it concerns phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must carefully research and compare each school prior to making your ultimate decision. You originally came to this website due to an interest in How To Choose Phlebotomy Training and to get more information regarding Phlebotomist Degree. However, by addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the right phlebotomist school for you. And with the appropriate training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Coffee Springs AL.
More Bloody Wonderful Locations in Alabama
Coffee Springs, Alabama
Coffee Springs is a town in Geneva County, Alabama, United States. It was incorporated in 1900, and it is considered to be a part of the Dothan, Alabama Metropolitan Statistical Area. At the 2010 census the population was 228, down from 251.
As of the census of 2000, there were 251 people, 108 households, and 74 families residing in the town. The population density was 320.3 people per square mile (124.2/km2). There were 128 housing units at an average density of 163.3 per square mile (63.4/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 93.23% White, 3.98% Black or African American, and 2.79% from two or more races.
There were 108 households out of which 17.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.4% were married couples living together, 12.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.6% were non-families. 24.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.32 and the average family size was 2.77.