How to Find the Right Phlebotomy Technician Training Course near Goodyear AZ
Selecting the ideal phlebotomist school near Goodyear AZ is an essential first step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging undertaking to analyze and compare each of the school alternatives that are available to you. However it's important that you do your due diligence to make sure that you receive a quality education. In fact, a large number of prospective students start their search by considering 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. Another option you may consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. We'll review more about online schools later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process also. 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 select the best one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our conversation about online classes.
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Phlebotomy Tech Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their main responsibility, there is actually far more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to confirm that the instruments being used are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient's data. Afterward, paperwork has to be properly completed to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory screening process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Goodyear AZ labs and are responsible for ensuring that samples are tested properly using the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough duties, they may be called upon to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The most basic answer is wherever patients are treated. Their work environments are numerous and diverse, such as Goodyear AZ hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be charged to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a specific kind of patient. For instance, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would solely be drawing blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns solely. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital setting would be collecting blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients each day.
Phlebotomist Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to complete and furnishes a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they normally take two years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less accessible and as a four year program furnish a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not required in the majority of states, many Goodyear AZ employers look for certification before hiring technicians. A few 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 some states that do require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, such as California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's important that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a superior education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomy Certificates and Degrees
First, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial part of the course of study will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-clinical portion of the training can be accessed online, it may be a more convenient option for some Goodyear AZ students. As an additional benefit, many online classes are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some costs, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be lessened also. Just confirm that the online phlebotomist school you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a premium education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online might be the best option for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Since you now have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already chosen the kind of program you intend 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 Goodyear AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy school. Each of these decisions are an important component of the process for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you need to ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's extremely important to select a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a respected national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a quality education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. Finally, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to future employers in the Goodyear AZ job market.
What is the College's Ranking? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's important to investigate the reputations of all schools you are considering. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their students as part of their job assistance program. You can research internet school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also check with some Goodyear AZ clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest 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 grievances have been filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Included? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums might signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish sufficient training.
Are Internships Included? Find out from the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with local health care facilities. They are the ideal way to get hands-on practical training frequently not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local Goodyear AZ health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Landing your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the schools you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the school has both a good reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the Goodyear AZ medical community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? Finally, it's important to make sure that the final program you select provides classes at times that are compatible with your active lifestyle. This is especially true if you decide to continue working while going to school. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Goodyear AZ, check that they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option also. And if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is should you need to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Choose the Best Phlebotomy Training near Goodyear Arizona
Making certain that you pick the right phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding medical care field. As we have discussed in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomist training programs can be offered in a variety of academic institutes, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Program options may vary somewhat across the country as each state has its own requirements when it pertains to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to carefully screen and compare each school before 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 select the best phlebotomist college for you. And with the appropriate training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Goodyear AZ.