How to Enroll in the Best Phlebotomy Technician Training Classes near Chandler AZ
Selecting the right phlebotomist training near Chandler AZ is an essential first step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging task to analyze and compare all of the school options that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you perform your due diligence to ensure that you receive a superior education. In reality, many prospective students start the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Yet another factor you may look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. We'll talk a bit more about online classes later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and should be part of your selection process too. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you pick the best one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our conversation about online schools.
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Phlebotomy Technician Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. While that is their principal task, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the tools being utilized are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample needs to be properly labeled with the patient's data. Afterward, paperwork needs to be correctly filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab screening procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Chandler AZ laboratories and are responsible for ensuring that samples are analyzed properly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they may be required to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The quickest answer is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are many and varied, including Chandler AZ hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They can be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a certain kind of patient. For instance, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be drawing blood from senior patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers solely. On the other hand, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital setting would be drawing blood from a wide range of patients and would work with new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Certification and Licensing
There are basically 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes under a year to complete and provides a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they normally take 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program offer a more expansive background in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. While not mandated in most states, a number of Chandler AZ employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. A few of the primary 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 phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a superior education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Schools
To start with, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial part 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 completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-practical portion of the training may be accessed online, it can be a more practical alternative for many Chandler AZ students. As an added benefit, many online classes are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some costs, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy school you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a superior education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online might be the ideal option for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Now that you have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start your due diligence process. You may have already decided on the kind of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is relevant if you will be commuting from Chandler AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online program. Each of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Following are several questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are considering prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you choose should be accredited by a highly regarded regional or national accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Finally, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Chandler AZ job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it's important to investigate the reputations of all schools you are considering. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can research internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even contact a few Chandler AZ clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and see if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? First, check with the state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are considering should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums might signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the schools you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with regional health care facilities. They are the ideal way to receive hands-on clinical training typically not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local Chandler AZ healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Finding your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Chandler AZ healthcare community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? Finally, it's critical to confirm that the ultimate college you pick offers classes at times that are compatible with your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you opt to continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Chandler AZ, make sure they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option as well. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is in case you need to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Enroll in the Best Phlebotomist Training Program near Chandler Arizona
Making sure that you choose the most suitable phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a quality program. Phlebotomist training programs are offered in a wide range of educational institutions, including junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive range of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Program offerings may differ slightly across the country as each state has its own criteria when it comes to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to carefully research and compare each college prior to making your final selection. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the right phlebotomy program for you. And with the appropriate training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Chandler AZ.