How to Enroll in the Best Phlebotomy Tech Training Program
Choosing the ideal phlebotomist training near Sunflower AL is a critical first step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging task to assess and compare each of the training alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it’s necessary that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you get a superior education. In fact, a large number of potential students begin the process by considering 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you might look into 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 keep in mind is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors such as reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and should be part of your decision process as well. Toward that end, we will supply a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you choose the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online schools.
Should You Choose a Career as a Phlebotomy Tech?
Right out of the gate, not many people are likely to know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The basic answer is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. We will go into more depth later. So of course anyone who selects this profession must be OK around needles and blood. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Sunflower AL medical environments, well this job may not be the best choice for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians often work around nervous people who don’t like needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you may be expected to work weekends, evenings and even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the blood and needles, 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 technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their main responsibility, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to confirm that the instruments being employed are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork must be accurately filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Sunflower AL laboratories and are responsible for making sure that samples are tested correctly utilizing the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they can be required to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?
The most basic response is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are many and varied, such as Sunflower AL hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be charged to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or young children to seniors. Some phlebotomists, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a specific kind of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be collecting blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients each day.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes less than a year to complete and offers a general 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, even though it’s not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they typically require two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a four year program provide a more expansive background in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. While not mandated in most states, a number of Sunflower AL employers require certification prior to employing technicians. Some of the principal 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 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 pick a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a premium education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Training
First, let’s dispel one potential misconception. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A good portion of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical component of the training may be attended online, it may be a more convenient option for many Sunflower AL students. As an additional benefit, many online classes are more affordable than their on-campus competitors. And some expenses, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced as well. Just confirm 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 online and clinical training, you can obtain a premium education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online may be the ideal choice for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Since you now have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the kind of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school is significant if you will be commuting from Sunflower AL as well as the tuition expense. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist program. Each of these decisions are an important part of the process for selecting a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only considerations when making your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s very important to select a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for all examinations you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program 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 advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to an assurance of a quality education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to sit for a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Sunflower AL job market.
What is the School’s Reputation? In many states there is little 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 out the reputations of all colleges you are considering. 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 screen online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also check with a few Sunflower AL clinics or hospitals that you might be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Provided? First, 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 no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums may signify that the program is not expansive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Ask the programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with area health care facilities. They are the optimal way to receive hands-on practical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Sunflower AL health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the schools you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the college has both a good reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Sunflower AL healthcare community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it’s critical to verify that the final school you choose provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is especially important if you choose to still work while attending school. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Sunflower AL, make sure they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option as well. And if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is in case you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Phlebotomy Training Course Sunflower Alabama
Making sure that you enroll in the ideal phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare field. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomist training programs are offered in a variety of educational institutes, such as community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive range of programs in medical care and health sciences. Program options may differ a bit from state to state as each state has its own requirements when it comes to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must thoroughly screen and compare each program prior to making your final decision. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Phlebotomy Training Course and to get more information regarding Phlebotomy Tech Schools. However, by addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist program for you. And with the proper training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Sunflower AL.
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