How to Choose the Best Phlebotomy Tech School
Picking the ideal phlebotomy training near Aniak AK is an important initial step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult task to investigate and compare all of the training options that are available to you. However it’s important that you complete your due diligence to make sure that you get a superior education. In reality, many students start their search by considering two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional option you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We’ll discuss more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables including reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and should be part of your selection process also. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you select the right one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our discussion about online schools.
Should You Become a Plebotomist?
Right out of the gate, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The short definition is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. We will provide more details later. So naturally anyone who decides to enter this profession must be able to handle blood and needles. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Aniak AK medical environments, well this job may not be right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians tend to work around nervous people who hate needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because most health care facilities are open 24 hours, you will probably 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 interacting with people and are patient and compassionate, this may be the perfect job for you.
Phlebotomy Tech Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although 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 utilized are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample must be correctly labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork has to be properly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Aniak AK laboratories and are in charge of ensuring that samples are analyzed correctly under the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they can be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The easiest answer is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are numerous and diverse, such as Aniak AK hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing samples from a particular kind of patient. For instance, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be drawing blood from older 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 setting would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially 2 kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to finish and provides a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they typically require 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a four year program offer a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. While not required in most states, many Aniak AK employers look for certification prior to 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 several states that do require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, including Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s important that you pick a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a superior education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Classes
First, let’s resolve one possible misconception. You can’t get all of your phlebotomy training online. A good part of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-practical portion of the training can be accessed online, it can be a more practical alternative for some Aniak AK students. As an additional benefit, some online programs are more affordable than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a quality education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the best choice for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Now that you have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already selected the kind of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the college is significant if you will be commuting from Aniak AK as well as the tuition expense. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online school. All of these decisions are an important component of the process for selecting a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Following are a few questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are considering before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed before working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to select a phlebotomist program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you select should be accredited by a recognized regional or national accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to sit for a certification exam offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the Aniak AK job market.
What is the School’s Ranking? In many 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 out the reputations of all schools you are reviewing. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even check with several Aniak AK clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and see if they can provide any recommendations. As a final thought, you can contact the Alaska school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Included? First, check with the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask the schools you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with regional healthcare facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on practical training typically not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Aniak AK medical community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement rate 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 an excellent reputation along with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Aniak AK healthcare community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? Finally, it’s crucial to confirm that the ultimate college you pick offers classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is particularly true if you decide to continue working while attending college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Aniak AK, check that they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option also. And if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is in case you need to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Phlebotomy Associates Degree Aniak Alaska
Making sure that you enroll in the right phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care field. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomy training programs can be offered in a variety of academic institutions, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program offerings may differ a bit from state to state as each state has its own criteria when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must carefully evaluate and compare each college prior to making your final selection. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Phlebotomy Associates Degree and to get more information regarding Online Phlebotomy Schools. 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 phlebotomy program for you. And with the appropriate education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Aniak AK.
More Bloody Wonderful Locations in Alaska
Aniak is located on the south bank of the Kuskokwim River at the head of Aniak Slough, 59 miles (95 km) southwest of Russian Mission in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta. It lies 92 miles (148 km) northeast of Bethel and 317 miles (510 km) west of Anchorage.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 8.8 square miles (23 km2), of which, 6.5 square miles (17 km2) of it is land and 2.3 square miles (6.0 km2) of it (25.82%) is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 572 people, 174 households, and 133 families residing in the city. The population density was 87.8 people per square mile (33.9/km²). There were 203 housing units at an average density of 31.1 per square mile (12.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 25.00% White, 0.35% Black or African American, 68.36% Native American, 0.52% Asian, and 5.77% from two or more races. 1.05% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.