How to Find the Right Phlebotomy Tech School near Casas Adobes AZ
Choosing the ideal phlebotomy technician training near Casas Adobes AZ is a critical first step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a daunting task to evaluate and compare all of the training alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you complete your due diligence to ensure that you get a superior education. In reality, most potential students begin their search by considering 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another factor you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We'll review a bit more about online schools later in this article. What's important to keep in mind is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors such as reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process also. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to 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 continue our conversation about online classes.
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Phlebotomy Tech Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their main duty, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must verify that the instruments being used are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample needs to be accurately labeled with the patient's data. Afterward, paperwork must be properly filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory testing procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Casas Adobes AZ labs and are responsible for making sure that samples are tested correctly utilizing the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough duties, they might be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery 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 Casas Adobes AZ hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing samples from a specific type of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be drawing blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be drawing blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients every day.
Phlebotomy Education, Licensing and Certification
There are basically 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to complete and offers a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they typically take two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a four year program offer a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. Although not mandated in the majority of states, most Casas Adobes AZ employers require certification prior to employing technicians. Some of the main 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, including Nevada and California. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's essential that you pick a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a quality education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Training
To start with, let's dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant portion of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-practical part of the training may be accessed online, it could be a more convenient option for some Casas Adobes AZ students. As an additional benefit, a number of online colleges are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some expenses, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist program you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a quality education with this means of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online may be the ideal choice for you.
Should You Go to School to Become a Plebotomist?Right out of the gate, not many people probably know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. As we have already discussed, the basic answer is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. So naturally anyone who decides to enter this profession must be comfortable with blood and needles. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Casas Adobes AZ medical environments, well this profession may not be right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians routinely work around nervous people who don’t like needles or having their blood drawn. And because many medical facilities are open around the clock, you may be required to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the needles and blood, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are compassionate and very patient, this could be the right profession for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Since you now have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start your due diligence process. You might have already picked the type of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school is significant if you will be commuting from Casas Adobes AZ as well as the tuition expense. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist college. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are several questions that you need to ask about all of the colleges you are considering prior to making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Arizona? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's very important to select a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and prepares you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you select should be accredited by a highly regarded regional or national accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a superior education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification exam offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited programs. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to future employers in the Casas Adobes AZ job market.
What is the Program'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 in addition to accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of all schools you are reviewing. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can research online school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even check with some Casas Adobes AZ clinics or hospitals that you may have an interest in working for and find out if they can provide any recommendations. As a final thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Included? To begin with, check with 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 phlebotomy program that you are considering should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums might signify that the program is not expansive enough to furnish sufficient training.
Are Internships Provided? Ask the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with local health care facilities. They are the optimal way to receive hands-on clinical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Casas Adobes AZ healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the college has both an excellent reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Casas Adobes AZ healthcare community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it's crucial to make sure that the final college you choose provides classes at times that will accommodate your active schedule. This is particularly important if you opt to still work while attending college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Casas Adobes AZ, make certain they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is in case you have to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Pick the Best Phlebotomy Training Program near Casas Adobes Arizona
Making sure that you select the most suitable phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying healthcare career position. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality program. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs can be offered in a variety of educational institutions, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive array of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options can differ a bit from state to state as each state has its own mandates when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to carefully research and compare each college prior to making your ultimate choice. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the right phlebotomist program for you. And with the proper education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Casas Adobes AZ.