How to Choose the Right Phlebotomy School
Picking the ideal phlebotomist training near Gardendale AL is an essential initial step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting undertaking to evaluate and compare all of the school options that are accessible to you. However it’s necessary that you perform your due diligence to make certain that you get a superior education. In fact, most students start the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. Yet another option you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll review a bit more about online schools later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors such as accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you select the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our discussion about online training.
Should You Become a Phlebotomy Tech?
First of all, few people probably know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The basic answer is a medical professional who draws blood from patients. We will provide more details later. So of course anyone who selects this profession must be able to handle needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Gardendale AL medical environments, well this job may not be right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomists tend to work around nervous people who don’t like needles or having a blood sample taken. And because most health care facilities are open 24 hours, you may be required to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with 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 Technician Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. While that is their primary task, there is in fact far more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to check that the instruments being utilized are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork must be correctly filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab screening process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Gardendale AL labs and are accountable for making sure that samples are analyzed properly using the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient responsibilities, they may be asked to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The most basic response is wherever patients are treated. Their work environments are numerous and varied, such as Gardendale AL hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They can be charged to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a particular type of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would only be drawing blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients each day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Licensing and Certification
There are primarily two kinds of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes less than a year to complete and offers a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they typically take 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a 4 year program provide a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will probably want to be certified. Although not required in most states, many Gardendale AL employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. Some of the main certifying organizations include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are several states that do require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, like Nevada and California. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a quality education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomist Online Schools
To begin with, let’s dispel one potential misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant component of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. A large number of courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-clinical component of the training can be accessed online, it may be a more convenient option for some Gardendale AL students. As an added benefit, some online colleges are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenditures, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist college you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a premium education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online might be the best choice for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges
Since you now have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already chosen the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is significant if you will be commuting from Gardendale AL in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online program. Each of these decisions are an important part of the process for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are looking at before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed prior to working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and prepares you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you choose should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited program in addition to an assurance of a premium education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are often not available for non-accredited programs. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Gardendale AL job market.
What is the College’s Reputation? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it’s essential to check the reputations of all schools you are looking at. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can research online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also talk to several Gardendale AL clinics or hospitals that you may have an interest in working for and find out if they can offer any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing 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 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 adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Find out from the colleges you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with area medical facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Gardendale AL healthcare community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Landing your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the college has both a good reputation along with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Gardendale AL medical community.
Are Classes Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it’s important to confirm that the ultimate school you pick offers classes at times that are compatible with your busy lifestyle. This is especially important if you choose to continue working while going to school. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Gardendale AL, make sure they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option also. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is should you have to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Online Classes For Phlebotomy Gardendale Alabama
Making certain that you choose the ideal phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this fulfilling health care field. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomy training programs can be found in a number of educational institutes, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program offerings can differ somewhat across the country as each state has its own criteria when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must thoroughly research and compare each program before making your final decision. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Online Classes For Phlebotomy and to get more information regarding Becoming A Phlebotomy Technician. However, by asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the best phlebotomist school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Gardendale AL.
More Bloody Wonderful Locations in Alabama
A large farm settlement near the area today known as Gardendale was settled around 1825. Some years later, other settlers began to move into the community commonly known as Jugtown, a name given to the area based on the presence of a large jug and churn factory that operated in the area. Some years later, Hettie Thomason Cargo, a school teacher, would lead a campaign to change the name of the community. In 1906, the name Gardendale was selected, and in 1955, the City of Gardendale was officially incorporated. Today, with more than 13,000 residents (estimated), the city of Gardendale has grown to include more than 400 businesses, 4 schools, and 24 churches.
In 1996, the Olympic torch run passed through the city during the weeks leading up to the 1996 Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta. Before Interstate 65 was constructed, the main route between Nashville, Tennessee and Birmingham, Alabama was U.S. Route 31. Prior to being built as a four-lane road, U.S. 31 was a twisting two-lane road that is still largely visible today. From the north end of Gardendale, it is now Snow Rogers Road, North Road, Moncrief Road, and then Main Street southward through the city to the Fultondale city limit where it becomes Stouts Road. In the fall of 2008, new signs were placed along the original route of Stouts Road through Gardendale denoting its historical significance as a stagecoach route between Tennessee and Birmingham during the 19th century. The first traffic signals in the city were located along U.S. 31 at Tarrant Road, Fieldstown Road, and Moncrief Road as well as Tarrant Road at Pineywood Road. A new signal at the intersection of Fieldstown Road and Main Street near city hall replaced a blinking signal shortly thereafter. Fieldstown Road was a narrow two lane road from U.S. 31 westward until Interstate 65 was built and then Fieldstown Road was re-routed onto the new road in the mid-1980s. An abundance of traffic signals have been erected in the city since those early days. In approximately 1970, the city installed street lights along U.S. 31 from the Fultondale city limits northward to the Moncrief Road intersection. The technology at that time was for blue vapor lights. Today, nearly 40 years later those same blue vapor lights still exist with some being replaced with the more modern bulbs near major intersections. Since 1980, Gardendale has annexed considerable amounts of land on the north, east, and west sides. Much of the eastern area is uninhabited. The western annexation is centered along Fieldstown Road. Most of the newest residential development has been in this area and along Shady Grove Road south of Fieldstown Road. The northern annexation has centered along US 31 and extends nearly 2 miles (3.2 km) farther north than 1980. The city has a working historical society, established January 23, 2006, that is working to record the history of the Gardendale area. They have a museum that is open to the public on Saturday mornings each week. It contains a variety of photographs, documents, and other historical memorabilia from Gardendale.
Gardendale is located at 33°39′36″N 86°48′46″W / 33.66000°N 86.81278°W / 33.66000; -86.81278 (33.6601033, -86.8127702). According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 18.0 square miles (47 km2), all land. However, with the recent annexation of several thousand acres from the community of Mt. Olive and other unincorporated areas, the city now has an estimated total area of around 25.0 square miles (65 km2). Gardendale is situated along one of the three major transportation corridors from the Midwest to the Gulf Coast (I-75, I-65, I-55). A tremendous volume of freight (via rail and truck) passes through or near Gardendale.
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