How to Choose the Best Phlebotomy Tech Training Classes near Marana AZ
Picking the ideal phlebotomist training near Marana AZ is a critical first step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting task to investigate and compare all of the training alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you perform your due diligence to make certain that you receive a quality education. In reality, a large number of potential students begin their search by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you might look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We'll talk a bit 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 closest or the cheapest one. Other variables including reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and should be part of your selection process too. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating 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 classes.
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Phlebotomy Tech Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. While that is their main function, there is actually much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the tools being used are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample must be correctly labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork needs to be accurately completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Marana AZ labs and are responsible for making sure that samples are tested correctly using the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't enough responsibilities, they might be required to train 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 Marana AZ hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They can be charged to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting samples from a certain kind of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be drawing blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomists working 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 Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two kinds of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program normally takes less than a year to finish and furnishes a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they usually require two years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not mandated in most states, most Marana AZ employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. Some of the principal certifying organizations include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are several states that do require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, like Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomy Schools
First, let's resolve one likely misconception. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy 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. Many courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-clinical portion of the training may be accessed online, it might be a more convenient alternative for many Marana AZ students. As an additional benefit, some online programs are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some expenses, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can receive a quality education with this means of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online might be the best option for you.
Should You Train to Be a Phlebotomy Tech?Right out of the gate, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. As we have already discussed, the short answer is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. So naturally anyone who chooses this profession must be OK around blood and needles. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Marana AZ medical facilities, well this job probably is not right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians tend to work around anxious people who hate needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because many medical facilities are open around the clock, you may be required to work weekends, nights and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the needles and blood, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are compassionate and very patient, this may be the right job for you.
Topics 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 may have already selected the kind of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the school is relevant if you will be commuting from Marana AZ in addition to the tuition expense. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist college. Each of these decisions are a critical part of the process for picking a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are looking at prior to making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's extremely important to select a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you pick should be accredited by a recognized regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited program aside from an assurance of a quality education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to sit for a certification exam offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited schools. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Marana AZ job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's imperative to check the reputations of all colleges you are looking at. 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 screen internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even contact a few Marana AZ hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and find out if they can offer any insights. 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 colleges are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Included? First, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums may signify that the program is not expansive enough to furnish sufficient training.
Are Internships Provided? Ask the schools you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with local medical facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on clinical training often not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local Marana AZ health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a higher rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the college has both a good reputation as well as a large network of professional contacts within the Marana AZ health care community.
Are Class Times Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it's important to confirm that the final program you choose offers classes at times that are compatible with your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you decide to still work while going to school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Marana AZ, make sure they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option as well. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is in case you need to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Enroll in the Right Phlebotomist Training Program near Marana Arizona
Making sure that you select the ideal phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding medical care career position. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs are available in a variety of academic institutions, including junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide assortment of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Program options can vary slightly from state to state as every state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to thoroughly research and compare each program prior to making your ultimate choice. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist school for you. And with the proper education, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Marana AZ.