How to Pick the Right Phlebotomist Training Classes
Picking the ideal phlebotomy training near Woodland PA is a critical initial step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting undertaking to investigate and compare each of the training options that are available to you. However it’s important that you complete your due diligence to ensure that you get a superior education. In reality, many prospective students start their search by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you might consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll discuss more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to remember is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and need to be part of your selection process as well. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you pick the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online classes.
Should You Become a Phlebotomy Technician?
First of all, not many people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The basic answer is a medical professional who draws blood from patients. We will go into more depth later. So naturally anyone who selects this profession must be OK around blood and needles. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Woodland PA medical environments, well this profession may not be right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Techs often work with nervous people who hate needles or having a blood sample taken. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you will probably be expected to work weekends, nights and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the needles and blood, and if you enjoy helping people and are patient and compassionate, this could be the perfect profession for you.
Phlebotomist Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their main task, there is actually much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the tools being utilized are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork must be accurately filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab testing process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Woodland PA laboratories and are in charge of ensuring that samples are tested correctly under the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they may be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The quickest response is wherever there are patients. Their work places are numerous and varied, including Woodland PA hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They can be assigned to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to seniors. Some phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing samples from a particular kind of patient. For example, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be drawing blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomist Training, Licensing and Certification
There are basically 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to complete and furnishes a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomy tech. Available at junior and community colleges, they usually take two years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a four year program provide a more extensive background in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. Although not mandated in most states, many Woodland PA employers require certification before hiring technicians. A few of the principal 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 require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, like Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s important that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only furnishes a superior education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Classes
To begin with, let’s resolve one likely mistaken belief. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial component of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical component of the training can be accessed online, it might be a more practical alternative for many Woodland PA students. As an added benefit, some online schools are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some costs, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be minimized also. Just make sure 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 obtain a premium education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online might be the best option for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Now that you have a basic understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You may 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 college is relevant if you will be commuting from Woodland PA as well as the tuition expense. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy school. All of these decisions are an important part of the process for selecting a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training performed before working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Pennsylvania or the state where you will be working and prepares you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you choose 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 a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a superior 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 agencies. Next, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited schools. Finally, graduating from an accredited school can make you more desirable to prospective employers in the Woodland PA job market.
What is the College’s Ranking? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it’s important to investigate the reputations of all schools you are considering. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can even contact some Woodland PA clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and see if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Pennsylvania school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Included? First, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are considering should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in partnership with regional health care facilities. They are the ideal means to receive hands-on clinical training typically not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Woodland PA health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Landing your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a higher rate, meaning they place most of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the college has both an excellent reputation together with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Woodland PA medical community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s critical to make sure that the ultimate college you choose provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is particularly true if you choose to still work while attending school. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Woodland PA, make certain they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option also. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed 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.
Online Phlebotomy Programs Woodland Pennsylvania
Making certain that you pick the right phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare field. As we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomist training programs can be offered in a number of academic institutes, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive assortment of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Course options may vary a bit across the country as every state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must diligently evaluate and compare each program prior to making your ultimate choice. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Online Phlebotomy Programs and to get more information regarding How To Become A Phlebotomists. However, by addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy program for you. And with the appropriate education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Woodland PA.
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