How to Enroll in the Best Phlebotomy Technician Training Program near Casa Grande AZ
Choosing the ideal phlebotomy school near Casa Grande AZ is an essential initial step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult task to investigate and compare each of the training alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you do your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a quality education. In reality, a large number of students begin the process by considering two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional factor you might look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We'll discuss a bit 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 variables such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and should be part of your selection process as well. 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 pick the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online classes.
Request Free information on Phlebotomy Training in Your Area
Phlebotomy Tech Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. Although that is their main task, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must confirm that the instruments being utilized are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient's information. Next, paperwork needs to be properly filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Many phlebotomists in fact work in Casa Grande AZ labs and are in charge of ensuring that samples are tested correctly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they may be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomists Employed?
The easiest response is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are numerous and varied, including Casa Grande AZ medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be charged to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a certain type of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be collecting blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from different patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 types of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to complete and offers a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomist. Available at junior and community colleges, they typically require two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program furnish a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. While not required in most states, a number of Casa Grande AZ employers look for certification before hiring 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 several states that do call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, such as Nevada and California. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it's important that you enroll in 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
First, let's resolve one potential 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 performed 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-clinical part of the training can be accessed online, it could be a more practical option for many Casa Grande AZ students. As an additional benefit, a number of online classes are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some costs, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be lessened as well. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist school you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (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 disciplined enough to study at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online may be the ideal choice for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges
Since you now have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already picked the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the school is significant if you will be commuting from Casa Grande AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist school. 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 arriving at your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are considering before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that meets 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 school and program you select should be accredited by a highly regarded regional or national accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several advantages to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Casa Grande AZ job market.
What is the College's Ranking? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's imperative to check out the reputations of all schools you are looking at. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen online school rating and review services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also contact some Casa Grande AZ hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Provided? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums may signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the colleges you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with local healthcare facilities. They are the optimal way to obtain hands-on practical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Casa Grande AZ healthcare community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Getting your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the college has both a good reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the Casa Grande AZ medical community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's critical to verify that the ultimate college you select provides classes at times that are compatible with your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while attending college. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Casa Grande AZ, make sure 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 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 because of emergencies or illness.
Pick the Best Phlebotomy Training Program near Casa Grande Arizona
Making certain that you pick the most suitable phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a premium program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be found in a number of educational institutions, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive range of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Course offerings may differ slightly across the country as every state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you need to carefully research and compare each school before making your ultimate choice. By addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can select the best phlebotomist program for you. And with the appropriate training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Casa Grande AZ.