How to Choose the Best Phlebotomy Technician Training Classes near Goodyear AZ
Selecting the ideal phlebotomy school near Goodyear AZ is an essential first step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a daunting undertaking to assess and compare each of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it's vital that you do your due diligence to make certain that you get a superior education. In fact, many prospective students start the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you may consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We'll discuss more about online classes later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and need to be part of your selection process also. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you choose the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our conversation about online training.
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Phlebotomist Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their primary responsibility, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must verify that the tools being utilized are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample must be properly labeled with the patient's information. Next, paperwork must be correctly completed in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab screening procedure. The phlebotomist then transports 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. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Goodyear AZ laboratories and are in charge of ensuring that samples are analyzed properly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough responsibilities, they can be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?
The most basic answer is wherever patients are treated. Their workplaces are numerous and varied, including Goodyear AZ medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood centers. They can be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a particular type of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be collecting blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be collecting blood from a wide variety of patients and would work with new patients each day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Licensing and Certification
There are primarily 2 types of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes less than a year to finish and furnishes a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest means 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 phlebotomy tech. Offered at community and junior colleges, they typically take 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less accessible and as a four year program offer a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. While not mandated in most states, many Goodyear AZ employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. A few of the main certifying organizations include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are some states that do require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, such as California and Nevada. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's essential that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a superior education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Schools
First, let's resolve one potential misconception. You can't get all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant component of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-clinical portion of the training may be attended online, it could be a more convenient option for many Goodyear AZ students. As an added benefit, many online classes are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist program you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a premium education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online may be the best option for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges
Since you now have a general idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already picked 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 school is important if you will be commuting from Goodyear AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have decided 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 some questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are considering prior to making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Arizona? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training performed before working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you choose 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 advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to an assurance of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification exam administered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Goodyear AZ job market.
What is the School's Reputation? In a number of states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's important to investigate the reputations of any schools you are looking at. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job placement program. You can research online school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also talk to a few Goodyear 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 find out if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Adequate Training Included? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. At 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 lower than these minimums may signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask the schools you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with local medical facilities. They are the ideal means to receive hands-on practical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Goodyear AZ health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the assistance 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 higher rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Goodyear AZ healthcare community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? And last, it's crucial to verify that the final school you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is particularly important if you opt to still work while going to college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Goodyear AZ, make certain they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is in case you need to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Choose the Best Phlebotomy Training Program near Goodyear Arizona
Making sure that you enroll in the right phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding medical care field. As we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomist training programs are offered in a variety of academic institutions, including community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive assortment of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program options may vary a bit from state to state as every state has its own criteria when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you must diligently evaluate and compare each program before making your ultimate decision. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy college for you. And with the appropriate education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Goodyear AZ.