How to Find the Best Phlebotomist School
Picking the ideal phlebotomy school near Sterling AK is a critical first step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging undertaking to investigate and compare all of the training options that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it’s necessary that you do your due diligence to make sure that you get a quality education. In fact, a large number of 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 consider 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 finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and should be part of your selection process too. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you choose the best one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our discussion about online training.
Should You Train to Be a Phlebotomy Tech?
Right out of the gate, not many people probably know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The short definition is a medical professional who draws blood from patients. We will provide more details later. So naturally anyone who selects this profession must be OK around needles and blood. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Sterling AK medical environments, well this profession may not be the best choice for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians tend to work around nervous people who hate needles or having a blood sample taken. And because many medical facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be expected to work weekends, evenings and 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 right job for you.
Phlebotomist Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their primary responsibility, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the instruments being used are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient’s data. Next, paperwork needs to be accurately completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening process. 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 infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Sterling AK laboratories and are responsible for making certain that samples are analyzed correctly utilizing the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they may be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Work?
The most basic response is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are numerous and varied, such as Sterling AK hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They can be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a certain kind of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be drawing blood from elderly patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients every day.
Phlebotomist Training, Licensing and Certification
There are basically two types of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes less than a year to complete and provides a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at community and junior colleges, they usually require two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a four year program offer a more expansive background in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will probably want to become certified. Although not required in most states, many Sterling AK employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. Some of the key 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 in order to practice as a phlebotomist, like Nevada and California. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s important that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a superior education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Training
To begin with, let’s resolve one possible misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant part of the course of study will be practical training and it will be performed either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Many courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-clinical portion of the training may be attended online, it might be a more convenient alternative for some Sterling AK students. As an additional benefit, some online colleges are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some costs, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced also. Just confirm that the online phlebotomist school you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a premium education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online may be the best option for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Now that you have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already chosen the kind of program you wish 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 Sterling AK in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online program. Each of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you need to ask about each of the schools you are looking at before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Alaska? As mentioned previously, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to select a phlebotomy program that meets the state specific requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you select should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited program in addition to an assurance of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to future employers in the Sterling AK job market.
What is the Program’s Reputation? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s essential to check the reputations of any colleges you are reviewing. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also contact some Sterling AK clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alaska school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Ample 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 classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with local health care facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on practical training typically not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Sterling AK healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Landing your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement rate 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 an excellent reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the Sterling AK healthcare community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it’s critical to verify that the final school you choose offers classes at times that are compatible with your busy lifestyle. This is particularly true if you choose to continue working while attending college. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Sterling AK, make sure they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. Even 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 policy is should you need to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Schools That Offer Phlebotomy Courses Sterling Alaska
Making sure that you choose the most suitable phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomy training programs are available in a number of academic institutions, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive array of courses in medical care and health sciences. Training program offerings can differ slightly across the country as each state has its own criteria when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must thoroughly screen and compare each program prior to making your ultimate selection. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Schools That Offer Phlebotomy Courses and to get more information regarding Courses On Phlebotomy. However, by addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the right phlebotomist college for you. And with the proper training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Sterling AK.
More Bloody Wonderful Locations in Alaska
Sterling is located on the western side of the Kenai Peninsula at 60°31′47″N 150°47′52″W / 60.52972°N 150.79778°W / 60.52972; -150.79778 (60.529635, -150.797887). It is bordered to the west by Ridgeway, to the southwest by Soldotna, and to the south by Funny River. Soldotna Creek forms the western boundary of the community, and the Kenai River forms the southern boundary.
Alaska Route 1, the Sterling Highway, runs through the community, leading southwest 11 miles (18 km) to the center of Soldotna and east 34 miles (55 km) to Cooper Landing at the outlet of Kenai Lake. The city of Kenai is 22 miles (35 km) to the west via Soldotna.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the Sterling CDP has a total area of 79.7 square miles (206.3 km2), of which 77.8 square miles (201.4 km2) are land and 1.9 square miles (4.9 km2), or 2.36%, are water.
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