How to Enroll in the Right Phlebotomy Tech Training Program near Casas Adobes AZ
Selecting the ideal phlebotomist training near Casas Adobes AZ is a critical initial step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult task to analyze and compare all of the training options that are accessible to you. However it's necessary that you complete your due diligence to make sure that you obtain a superior education. In reality, most potential students begin the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional factor you may look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. We'll talk 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 locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and must be part of your selection process too. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you select the best one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online training.
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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 actually so much more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to check that the instruments being employed are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient's information. Next, paperwork needs to be properly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Casas Adobes AZ labs and are responsible for making sure that samples are analyzed properly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they might be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Work?
The most basic answer is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are numerous and diverse, such as Casas Adobes AZ medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood centers. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a particular kind of patient. For example, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be collecting blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers solely. On the other hand, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital environment would be collecting blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients every day.
Phlebotomist Education, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes under a year to finish and offers a basic education together with 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 specifically a phlebotomy degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they usually require 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are less accessible and as a four year program provide a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. While not required in most states, many Casas Adobes AZ employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. A few of the key certifying agencies 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 phlebotomy tech, including California and Nevada. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's important that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a quality education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Classes
First, let's dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can't get all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial portion of the program of studies will be practical 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. However since the non-practical portion of the training can be accessed online, it may be a more practical option for many Casas Adobes AZ students. As an additional benefit, a number of online programs are less expensive than their traditional counterparts. And some expenditures, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist college you enroll in 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 superior education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online may be the right choice for you.
Should You Become a Phlebotomy Tech?Right out of the gate, few people probably know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. As we have previously discussed, the basic answer is a medical professional whose job is to draw blood. So of course anyone who chooses this profession must be comfortable with needles and blood. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Casas Adobes AZ medical environments, well this profession probably is not right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomists often work with nervous people who hate needles or having a blood sample taken. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you may be expected 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 helping people and are patient and compassionate, this could be the perfect profession for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Now that you have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to begin 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 college is significant if you will be commuting from Casas Adobes AZ as well as the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist program. All of these decisions are an important component of the procedure for selecting a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are several questions that you should ask about each of the programs you are looking at before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Arizona? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you enroll in should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a premium education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Casas Adobes AZ job market.
What is the School's Ranking? In numerous 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 investigate the reputations of any colleges you are considering. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their students as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also check with some Casas Adobes AZ hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a closing thought, you can contact the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Ample Training Provided? To begin with, contact 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 provide 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 comprehensive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Ask the programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with area healthcare facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on clinical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Casas Adobes AZ medical community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Getting your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Ask if the schools you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a higher rate, meaning they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the program has both a good reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the Casas Adobes AZ medical community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it's crucial to verify that the final college you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while attending college. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Casas Adobes AZ, check that 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 practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is should you need to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Enroll in the Right Phlebotomy Training near Casas Adobes Arizona
Making sure that you enroll in the most suitable phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this fulfilling health care field. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality school. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs are found in a number of academic institutes, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program options may differ a bit across the country as every state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to carefully evaluate and compare each school before making your ultimate selection. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the right phlebotomist program for you. And with the appropriate training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Casas Adobes AZ.