How to Find the Best Phlebotomy Tech Training Course near Peoria AZ
Choosing the right phlebotomist training near Peoria AZ is an essential initial step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a daunting undertaking to assess and compare all of the training options that are accessible to you. However it's necessary that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you receive a superior education. In fact, many students start their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Yet another factor you might consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. We'll talk more about online schools later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors including accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and should be part of your decision process as well. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you choose the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online schools.
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Phlebotomy Technician Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. While that is their primary duty, there is actually much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to confirm that the instruments being employed are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample needs to be properly labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork needs to be accurately filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory testing process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Peoria AZ labs and are responsible for making certain that samples are analyzed correctly utilizing the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they may be asked to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The most basic response is wherever patients are treated. Their work environments are many and varied, such as Peoria AZ medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomy techs, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting samples from a certain type of patient. For example, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be drawing blood from elderly patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital environment would be drawing blood from a wide variety of patients and would work with new patients every day.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 kinds of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program normally takes less than a year to finish and provides a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they usually require two years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less available and as a 4 year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, most Peoria 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 a few states that do call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, such as California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a quality education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Colleges
First, let's dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial portion of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. A large number of courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-clinical portion of the training may be accessed online, it may be a more convenient option for some Peoria AZ students. As an added benefit, a number of online classes are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some costs, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a premium education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online might be the best choice for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges
Now that you have a general idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already picked the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the college is relevant if you will be commuting from Peoria AZ in addition to the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy program. All of these decisions are a critical component of the process 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 all of the schools you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and prepares you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you pick should be accredited by a highly regarded regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are often not available for non-accredited schools. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Peoria AZ job market.
What is the School's Ranking? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of all colleges you are considering. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can research online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also talk to some Peoria AZ clinics or hospitals that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing 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 Sufficient Training Included? First, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internships Included? Ask the schools you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with area health care facilities. They are the optimal means to receive hands-on practical training typically not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Peoria AZ medical community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Finding your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation as well as a large network of professional contacts within the Peoria AZ medical community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? And last, it's important to make sure that the ultimate college you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy lifestyle. This is especially important if you opt to still work while going to school. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Peoria AZ, check that they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. And if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is in case you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Choose the Right Phlebotomy Training Program near Peoria Arizona
Making certain that you pick the right phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this gratifying health care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs are offered in a variety of academic institutes, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program options may differ somewhat from state to state as every state has its own requirements when it pertains to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must carefully research and compare each program prior to making your ultimate choice. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomy school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Peoria AZ.