How to Pick the Best Phlebotomy Training Course
Picking the ideal phlebotomist school near Port Alexander AK is an important initial step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a difficult undertaking to investigate and compare all of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s important that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you get a quality education. In reality, many potential students start the process by considering two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. Yet another factor you might look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll review a bit more about online classes later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors such as accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process too. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you pick the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online schools.
Should You Train to Be a Phlebotomy Technician?
First of all, few people probably know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The basic definition is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. We will go into more depth later. So of course anyone who decides to enter this profession must be OK around blood and needles. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Port Alexander AK medical environments, well this profession probably is not right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomists often work with anxious people who don’t like needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, 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 needles and blood, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are patient and compassionate, this may be the perfect profession for you.
Phlebotomist Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. Although that is their primary duty, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to verify that the tools being utilized are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient’s data. Next, paperwork must be properly completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab screening 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. Many phlebotomists actually work in Port Alexander AK labs and are in charge of making certain that samples are analyzed correctly utilizing the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient responsibilities, they can be required to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The most basic answer is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are numerous and varied, such as Port Alexander AK hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a specific kind of patient. For example, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be collecting blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital environment would be collecting blood from a wide range of patients and would work with new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two types of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to finish and offers a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training to become a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they usually require two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are less accessible and as a four year program furnish a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. After you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. Although not mandated in the majority of states, a number of Port Alexander AK employers look for certification prior to hiring 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 some states that do call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, such as Nevada and California. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a premium education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Training
To start with, let’s dispel one likely mistaken belief. You can’t get all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial component of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-practical component of the training can be attended online, it may be a more practical option for many Port Alexander AK students. As an added benefit, many online colleges are more affordable than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened as well. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist program you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a quality education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online might be the right option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Now that you have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You might have already picked the kind of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is important if you will be commuting from Port Alexander AK in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online program. Each of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Following are several questions that you should ask about all of the colleges you are looking at before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Alaska? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed before working as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be working and preps you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you choose should be accredited by a respected national or regional accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to an assurance of a quality education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the Port Alexander AK job market.
What is the School’s Reputation? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it’s imperative to investigate the reputations of all schools you are looking at. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can research internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can even check with a few Port Alexander AK hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and see if they can provide any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Alaska school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the schools you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with local medical facilities. They are the optimal means to get hands-on practical training often not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Port Alexander AK health care community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the program has both a good reputation together with a large network of professional contacts within the Port Alexander AK medical community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? And last, it’s important to confirm that the ultimate school you choose offers classes at times that are compatible with your active schedule. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while going to college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Port Alexander AK, make certain they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option as well. And if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is should you have to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Accredited Phlebotomy Training Port Alexander Alaska
Making sure that you enroll in the most suitable phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium college. Phlebotomy training programs are available in a number of academic institutes, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive assortment of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Course offerings can differ a bit across the country as every state has its own requirements when it pertains to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to diligently screen and compare each school prior to making your final choice. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Accredited Phlebotomy Training and to get more information regarding Where Can I Take A Phlebotomy Class. However, by asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the best phlebotomy program for you. And with the appropriate training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Port Alexander AK.
More Bloody Wonderful Locations in Alaska
Port Alexander, Alaska
Port Alexander originally incorporated in 1936. It became a part of the Greater Sitka Borough in 1963, following the state legislature's passage of the Mandatory Borough Act. The original municipality was dissolved when it unified with Sitka's city and borough governments in 1971, which formed the present-day entity known as the City and Borough of Sitka. However, residents were unhappy with the arrangement, and successfully sought to detach themselves from the new municipality. Port Alexander reincorporated as a second class city in 1974.
Port Alexander is the only city on a small sliver of land at the southeastern corner of Baranof Island that is not part of the City and Borough of Sitka. It comprises less than one-quarter of one percent of Baranof Island's land area.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 15.1 square miles (39 km2), of which, 3.8 square miles (9.8 km2) of it is land and 11.3 square miles (29 km2) of it (74.88%) is water.