How to Choose the Right Phlebotomy Tech School
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomist training near Dickinson AL is an essential initial step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging undertaking to assess and compare all of the school options that are available to you. However it’s necessary that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you receive a superior education. In fact, most students begin the process by considering two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. Yet another option you might look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We’ll discuss more about online classes later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and need to be part of your selection process also. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you pick the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our conversation about online classes.
Should You Choose a Career as a Plebotomist?
Right out of the gate, few people probably know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The short answer is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. We will go into more depth later. So naturally anyone who chooses this profession must be able to handle blood and needles. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Dickinson AL medical environments, well this profession probably is not the best choice for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomists routinely work around anxious people who don’t like needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because many medical facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be expected to work weekends, nights and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the needles and blood, and if you enjoy helping people and are patient and compassionate, this may be the right profession for you.
Phlebotomist Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their main function, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample needs to be properly labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork must be correctly completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Dickinson AL labs and are accountable for making certain that samples are tested correctly using the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they may be called upon to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Work?
The simplest answer is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are numerous and diverse, including Dickinson AL hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be assigned to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomy techs, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting samples from a particular kind of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be collecting blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be drawing blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients each day.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially two types of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes under a year to finish and provides a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they usually require 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less accessible and as a 4 year program offer a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not mandated in most states, most Dickinson AL employers require certification before employing technicians. A few 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 a few states that do require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, such as California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a superior education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomy Online Colleges
To start with, let’s resolve one possible misconception. You can’t get all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant component of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be performed either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Many courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-clinical component of the training can be accessed online, it could be a more convenient option for some Dickinson AL students. As an additional benefit, many online schools are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced also. Just verify that the online phlebotomist program you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a premium education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online may be the best choice for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Now that you have a general idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You may have already picked the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is important if you will be commuting from Dickinson AL in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online program. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the process for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Following are several questions that you need to ask about each of the colleges you are considering prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training performed prior to working as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you might need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s very important to select a phlebotomist program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and preps you for any exams you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a reputable regional or national accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited program in addition to an assurance of a premium education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are often unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to future employers in the Dickinson AL job market.
What is the College’s Reputation? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it’s essential to check the reputations of any schools you are looking at. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job placement program. You can research online school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can even contact a few Dickinson AL hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Adequate Training Provided? 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 classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums might signify that the program is not expansive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internships Provided? Find out from the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with area healthcare facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on practical training often not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Dickinson AL health care community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Ask if the programs you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the program has both a good reputation together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Dickinson AL medical community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it’s crucial to confirm that the final college you choose provides classes at times that are compatible with your active lifestyle. This is especially important if you opt to still work while going to college. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Dickinson AL, make sure they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option as well. And if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is in case you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
How Long Does It Take To Be A Phlebotomist Dickinson Alabama
Making sure that you enroll in the ideal phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding health care career position. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomy training programs can be offered in a wide range of educational institutions, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Program options can vary a bit from state to state as each state has its own criteria when it concerns phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to diligently evaluate and compare each college before making your ultimate selection. You originally came to this website due to an interest in How Long Does It Take To Be A Phlebotomist and to get more information regarding Online Phlebotomy Class. However, by addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy program for you. And with the appropriate training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Dickinson AL.
More Bloody Wonderful Locations in Alabama
Susanna Wilkerson Dickinson (1814 – October 7, 1883) and her infant daughter, Angelina, were among the few American survivors of 1836 Battle of the Alamo during the Texas Revolution. Her husband, Almaron Dickinson, and 185 other Texian defenders were killed by the Mexican Army.
Susanna was born in 1814 in Williamson County, Tennessee and never learned to read and write. On May 24, 1829, when she was 15, she married Almaron Dickinson. Two years later, they became DeWitt Colonists, obtaining property on the San Marcos River, where they opened a blacksmith shop and also invested in a hat factory run by fellow colonist George Kimbell in Gonzales.
As the Mexican government increasingly abandoned its federalist structure in favor of a more centralized government, Almaron Dickinson became one of the early proponents of war. He would later join with other volunteers during the Battle of Gonzales, becoming one of the "Old Gonzales 18" in the battle which launched the Texas Revolution on October 2, 1835. By the end of the year, the Texian army had driven all Mexican soldiers from the territory. Soon after, Susanna joined Almaron at the former Alamo Mission in San Antonio de Bexar (now San Antonio, Texas) shortly after his assignment to the garrison there. The Dickinson family lived outside the Alamo, boarding with the Ruiz family.