How to Enroll in the Right Phlebotomist Training Program
Selecting the ideal phlebotomy school near Saint Marys AK is an important first step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting task to assess and compare each of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s necessary that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you get a quality education. In fact, most potential students start their search by considering 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Another factor you may consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We’ll discuss a bit more about online classes later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and need to be part of your selection process also. Toward that end, we will supply a list of questions that you should 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 address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our conversation about online classes.
Should You Go to School to Become a Plebotomist?
First of all, not many people probably know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The short answer is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. We will provide more details later. So naturally anyone who chooses this profession must be able to handle needles and blood. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Saint Marys AK medical environments, well this job probably is not 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 taken. And because most health care facilities are open 24 hours, you will probably be expected to work weekends, nights and even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the needles and blood, and if you enjoy helping people and are compassionate and very patient, this could be the right job for you.
Phlebotomy Tech Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their primary responsibility, there is in fact much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to verify that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient’s data. Afterward, paperwork has to be accurately filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab screening process. The phlebotomist then transports 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. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Saint Marys AK laboratories and are accountable for making certain that samples are tested correctly using the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they may be asked to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Work?
The most basic answer is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are many and varied, including Saint Marys AK medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They can be charged to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, based on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting blood from a certain kind of patient. For instance, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would only be drawing blood from senior patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients each day.
Phlebotomy Education, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program generally takes under a year to complete and furnishes a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomy tech. Available at community and junior colleges, they usually require 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a four year program offer a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. Although not required in the majority of states, a number of Saint Marys AK employers require certification before hiring technicians. Some 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 call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, like Nevada and California. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Colleges
To start with, let’s dispel one possible misconception. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant portion of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. A large number of courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-practical portion of the training may be accessed online, it might be a more convenient option for some Saint Marys AK students. As an added benefit, some online programs are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy program you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a superior education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online may be the right choice for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Since you now have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the type 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 Saint Marys AK as well as the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online 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 arriving at your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you need to ask about all of the colleges you are looking at prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Alaska? 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 hours of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you pick 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 program aside from a guarantee of a quality education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are typically not available for non-accredited schools. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Saint Marys AK job market.
What is the Program’s Reputation? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s essential to check the reputations of all colleges you are considering. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can research internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can even contact a few Saint Marys AK hospitals or clinics that you might have an interest in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a final thought, you can contact the Alaska school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Adequate Training Provided? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are considering should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything below these minimums might signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Find out from the schools you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with local medical facilities. They are the ideal means to get hands-on practical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local Saint Marys AK health care community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Landing your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the schools you are reviewing 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 program has both a good reputation along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Saint Marys AK health care community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? Finally, it’s critical to verify that the final college you pick provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy lifestyle. This is especially true if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Saint Marys 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 study online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is in case you need to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Where Can I Take A Phlebotomy Course Saint Marys Alaska
Making certain that you enroll in the most suitable phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are offered in a wide range of academic institutes, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide assortment of courses in medical care and health sciences. Course offerings may vary somewhat across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must carefully screen and compare each school prior to making your ultimate selection. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Where Can I Take A Phlebotomy Course and to get more information regarding Where Can I Study Phlebotomy. However, by asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the best phlebotomy program for you. And with the proper training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Saint Marys AK.
More Bloody Wonderful Locations in Alaska
St. Mary's, Alaska
St. Mary's (Negeqliq in Central Yup'ik) is a city in Kusilvak Census Area, Alaska, United States. The adjacent village of Andreafsky (historically known as Clear River) joined with St. Mary's in 1980. At the 2010 census the population was 507, up from 500 in 2000. By 2016, the population was estimated to be 550.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 50.2 square miles (130 km2), of which, 44.0 square miles (114 km2) of it is land and 6.3 square miles (16 km2) of it (12.47%) is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 500 people, 137 households, and 90 families residing in the city. The population density was 11.4 people per square mile (4.4/km²). There were 186 housing units at an average density of 4.2 per square mile (1.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 11.20% White, 87.20% Native American. 0.40% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.