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Become a Phlebotomist in Buckeye Arizona

How to Select the Right Phlebotomy Tech Training Program near Buckeye AZ

Buckeye AZ phlebotomy tech drawing bloodChoosing the right phlebotomy training near Buckeye AZ is an essential first step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a daunting task to evaluate and compare each of the school options that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's vital that you do your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a quality education. In fact, a large number of students begin the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We'll talk a bit more about online schools later in this article. What's important to remember is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors such as accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and must be part of your selection process also. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing 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 discussion about online training.

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Phlebotomist Job Description

Buckeye AZ phlebotomy lab technicianA phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal duty, there is in fact much more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must verify that the tools being used are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample needs to be properly labeled with the patient's information. Next, paperwork needs to be accurately filled out in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers 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. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Buckeye AZ laboratories and are responsible for ensuring that samples are tested properly using the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they can be asked to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.

Where do Phlebotomists Work?

The quickest answer is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are many and varied, such as Buckeye AZ hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They may be charged to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or young children to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing blood from a particular type of patient. For instance, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be drawing blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns 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 different patients on a daily basis.

Phlebotomy Education, Certification and Licensing

blood analysis done in Buckeye AZ laboratoryThere are essentially 2 kinds of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to finish and provides a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training to become a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they usually take 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program provide a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. While not required in most states, many Buckeye AZ employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. Some of the principal 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 phlebotomy tech, like California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you are required or elect to take.

Phlebotomy Online Schools

Buckeye AZ student attending phlebotomy classes onlineTo begin with, let's resolve one likely misconception. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A good portion of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be performed 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 may be a more convenient alternative for some Buckeye AZ students. As an added benefit, a number of online programs are more affordable than their traditional counterparts. And some expenditures, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomist school you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can receive a premium education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online might be the best option for you.

Should You Become a Plebotomist?

Right out of the gate, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. As we have already discussed, the short answer is a medical professional who draws blood from patients. So naturally anyone who chooses this profession must be able to handle needles and blood. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Buckeye AZ medical facilities, well this job may not be the best choice for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomists often work around anxious people who hate needles or having their blood taken. And because many medical facilities are open around the clock, you may be required 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 may be the right profession for you.

Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges

What to ask Buckeye AZ phlebotomy schoolsSince 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 may have already selected the kind of program you wish 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 Buckeye AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online college. Each of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you need to ask about all of the schools you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate selection.

Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for any exams you may have to take.

Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a reputable 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 earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more desirable to prospective employers in the Buckeye AZ job market.

What is the College's Ranking? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's important to check out the reputations of all colleges 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 also. You can even contact several Buckeye AZ clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.

Is Enough Training Provided? First, contact the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums might indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.

Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with area medical facilities. They are the ideal means to get hands-on practical training typically not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Buckeye AZ medical community. And they look good on resumes also.

Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the programs you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the program has both a good reputation along with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Buckeye AZ healthcare community.

Are Class Times Available as Needed? Finally, it's critical to make sure that the ultimate college you choose offers classes at times that are compatible with your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while going to school. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Buckeye AZ, make certain they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is should you need to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.

Choose the Right Phlebotomist Training near Buckeye Arizona

Making sure that you select the right phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this rewarding health care career position. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomist training programs are offered in a wide range of educational institutes, including community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program offerings may vary somewhat from state to state as every state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must diligently evaluate and compare each program prior to making your final decision. By addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the right phlebotomy school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Buckeye AZ.