How to Select the Right Phlebotomy Training Program
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomy school near Vincent AL is an important initial step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a daunting task to assess and compare all of the school alternatives that are available to you. However it’s important that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you get a superior education. In reality, many students start the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. Another factor you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We’ll discuss a bit more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and need to be part of your selection process also. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you select the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our conversation about online schools.
Should You Go to School to Become a Phlebotomy Technician?
Right out of the gate, few people probably know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician 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 chooses this profession must be comfortable with needles and blood. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Vincent AL medical environments, well this job may not be right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Techs often work with anxious people who hate needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you may be expected 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 interacting with people and are patient and compassionate, this may be the perfect profession for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. Although that is their principal responsibility, there is actually far more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to verify that the tools being used are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork needs to be correctly 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 can be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Vincent AL laboratories and are responsible for ensuring that samples are analyzed properly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they might be required to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The easiest answer is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are numerous and diverse, such as Vincent AL medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood centers. They can be charged to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or toddlers to seniors. Some phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing samples from a specific type of patient. For example, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be collecting 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 environment would be collecting samples from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from different patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, 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 under a year to finish and provides a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will include training to become a phlebotomist. Available at junior and community colleges, they normally take two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a four year program provide a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. After you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. While not mandated in most states, many Vincent AL employers look for certification before employing technicians. A few of the primary 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 phlebotomist, such as Nevada and California. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a superior education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Schools
To start with, let’s dispel one likely mistaken belief. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial component of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be performed either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-practical component of the training can be accessed online, it could be a more practical option for many Vincent AL students. As an additional benefit, some online programs are more affordable than their traditional counterparts. And some costs, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist school you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can receive a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the ideal option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Now that you have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already picked the type 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 relevant if you will be commuting from Vincent AL as well as the tuition expense. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online college. All of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about each of the colleges you are looking at prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Alabama? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed before working as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you pick should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a quality education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to future employers in the Vincent AL job market.
What is the College’s Reputation? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it’s essential to check out the reputations of any colleges you are looking at. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their students as part of their job placement program. You can research online school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even check with a few Vincent AL hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and see if they can offer any recommendations. As a final thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Provided? First, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomist 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 indicate that the program is not expansive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Find out from the schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with regional medical facilities. They are the optimal means to get hands-on clinical training typically not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Vincent AL health care community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Finding your first phlebotomist job will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the programs you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the college has both a good reputation together with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Vincent AL medical community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? And last, it’s crucial to verify that the final program you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is especially true if you opt to still work while going to school. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Vincent AL, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. And if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is should you need to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Where Can I Take Phlebotomy Classes Vincent Alabama
Making sure that you enroll in the most suitable phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding medical care field. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are offered in a number of educational institutes, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive array of courses in medical care and health sciences. Training program options can differ slightly from state to state as every state has its own prerequisites when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you need to thoroughly screen and compare each program prior to making your final choice. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Where Can I Take Phlebotomy Classes and to get more information regarding Low Cost Phlebotomy Training. However, by addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the right phlebotomy college for you. And with the appropriate education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Vincent AL.
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Albert Linder Vincent (December 23, 1906 – December 14, 2000) was an American professional baseball player, manager, coach and scout. A second baseman, his playing and managing careers were confined to minor league baseball, but he spent 12 seasons in Major League Baseball as a coach for four different clubs.
Vincent was also a prominent figure as a college baseball coach. He was assistant baseball coach at Lamar University from 1974 to 1989 and was inducted into Lamar's "Cardinals Hall of Honor" in 1981. Lamar University's Vincent-Beck Stadium is named after him.
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