Phlebotomy Tech Schools Helena AL

How to Enroll in the Right Phlebotomy Tech Training Classes

Helena AL phlebotomist drawing blood from donorEnrolling in the ideal phlebotomy technician training near Helena AL is an essential first step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging task to analyze and compare all of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s important that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you get a quality education. In fact, most prospective students begin their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you may consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll discuss 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 closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and should be part of your selection process as well. Toward that end, we will supply a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you select the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our conversation about online training.

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Should You Go to School to Become a Plebotomist?

Helena AL phlebotomy student training to take bloodRight out of the gate, few people probably know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The basic definition is a medical professional who draws blood from patients. We will go into more depth later. So of course anyone who decides to enter this profession must be comfortable with needles and blood. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Helena AL medical environments, well this profession probably is not the best choice for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Techs routinely work with nervous people who hate needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you may be required to work weekends, nights and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the blood and needles, and if you enjoy helping people and are patient and compassionate, this may be the right job for you.

Phlebotomy Tech Work Summary

Helena AL phlebotomy tech with patientA phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. While that is their main duty, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the tools being utilized are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient’s data. Afterward, paperwork must be properly completed to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab screening process. The phlebotomist then delivers 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. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Helena AL laboratories and are accountable for making certain that samples are tested properly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they might be asked to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.

Where do Phlebotomists Work?

blood analysis in Helena AL labThe most basic answer is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are many and diverse, such as Helena AL medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be assigned to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a specific kind of patient. For example, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would only be drawing blood from elderly patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers solely. On the other hand, phlebotomists working in a general hospital environment would be drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from new patients every day.

Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification

Helena AL phlebotomist holding blood sampleThere are primarily two kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to complete and provides a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Available at junior and community colleges, they usually take 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will probably want to get certified. While not mandated in most states, most Helena AL employers require certification before hiring technicians. Some of the principal 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 phlebotomy tech, like California and Nevada. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.

Phlebotomist Online Certificates and Degrees

Helena AL student attending online phlebotomy trainingTo begin with, let’s resolve one potential misconception. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant part of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be conducted either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-practical part of the training can be accessed online, it may be a more convenient option for some Helena AL students. As an added benefit, many online classes are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenses, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered as well. Just confirm that the online phlebotomist college you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can receive a superior education with this means of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online may be the right option for you.

What to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges

Questions to ask Helena AL phlebotomy schoolsSince you now have a basic understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You might have already selected the kind of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the school is important if you will be commuting from Helena AL in addition to the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online school. All of these decisions are a critical part of the process for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you need to ask about each of the schools you are looking at before making your ultimate decision.

Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed prior to working as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s very important to select a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for all examinations you may have to take.

Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you choose should be accredited by a respected regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited school aside from an assurance of a superior education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Helena AL job market.

What is the College’s Ranking? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it’s imperative to check the reputations of any colleges you are looking at. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their students as part of their job assistance program. You can research internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can even talk to several Helena AL hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and see if they can provide any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.

Is Adequate Training Included? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything below these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to furnish sufficient training.

Are Internships Provided? Ask the schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with local health care facilities. They are the ideal means to get hands-on practical training typically not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Helena AL health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.

Is Job Placement Support Provided? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the program has both a good reputation as well as a large network of professional contacts within the Helena AL health care community.

Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s critical to verify that the final program you select provides classes at times that are compatible with your active lifestyle. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while going to school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Helena AL, make sure they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is in case you have to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.

Phlebotomy Tech Schools Helena Alabama

Making sure that you choose the right phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are offered in a wide range of academic institutions, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive assortment of courses in medical care and health sciences. Course options may vary somewhat across the country as every state has its own requirements when it pertains to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to carefully evaluate and compare each program prior to making your ultimate selection. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Phlebotomy Tech Schools and to get more information regarding How Long Phlebotomy Training.  However, by asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the right phlebotomy program for you. And with the appropriate training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Helena AL.

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    Helena, Alabama

    Helena (pronunciation hel-LE-nah) is a city in Jefferson and Shelby Counties in the state of Alabama. Helena is considered a suburb of Birmingham and part of the Birmingham-Hoover Metropolitan Area. As of the 2010 census, the population was 16,793. Helena is highly regarded as a place to live and raise children; Business Week named Helena the 13th "Best Place to Raise Your Kids" in 2007.[4] It has the eighth-lowest crime rate per population in the U.S., and the city was ranked in Money magazine's 2007 list of "Best Places to Live: Top 100" in the U.S., placing at number 91.[5] The Alabama League of Municipalities awarded Helena the 2008 Municipal Achievement Award (population 10,001 to 20,000).[6]

    Helena initially incorporated in 1877, but reincorporated in 1917 after errors were discovered in the initial incorporation papers.[7] It did not first appear on the U.S. Census until 1920, giving credence to the later date of incorporation.

    The initial settlers to Helena, initially named Cove, were veterans of the final campaigns of the War of 1812. Members of Andrew Jackson's army who cut through the brush were attracted to the quiet, peaceful valleys and streams after the Battle of Horseshoe Bend. These first settlers were reported to arrive in 1849 and were predated by the Creek Indian tribes who these settlers had battled. By 1856, the Cove post office opened. Shortly thereafter, the settlers changed the name of the town to Hillsboro.

     

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