How to Enroll in the Best Phlebotomist Training Course near Peoria AZ
Enrolling in the right phlebotomist school near Peoria AZ is an important first step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging undertaking to assess and compare all of the school alternatives that are available to you. However it's important that you perform your due diligence to make certain that you obtain a quality education. In reality, many potential students begin their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional option you may consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We'll discuss more about online schools later in this article. What's important to keep in mind is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors such as accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and need to 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 assessing to help you choose the best one for you. But before we do that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our conversation about online schools.
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Phlebotomist Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal function, there is actually so much more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must confirm that the tools being employed are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample must be correctly labeled with the patient's information. Afterward, paperwork must be accurately completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Peoria AZ laboratories and are responsible for making certain that samples are tested properly under the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough duties, they might be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The most basic response is wherever there are patients. Their work places are many and diverse, such as Peoria AZ hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a specific kind of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be collecting blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital environment would be drawing blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients every day.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes under a year to complete and offers a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at community and junior colleges, they typically take two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program offer a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will probably want to become certified. While not required in the majority of states, most Peoria AZ employers require certification before hiring technicians. Some of the key 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 call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, such as California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Classes
To start with, let's resolve one possible mistaken belief. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant portion of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be performed 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 component of the training may be accessed online, it might be a more practical option for some Peoria AZ students. As an additional benefit, many online classes are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some costs, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be minimized as well. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist college you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can receive a premium education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online may be the ideal choice for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Since you now have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You might 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 Peoria AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy school. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the process for selecting a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are considering prior to making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Arizona? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed prior to practicing as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you might need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. 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 all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you select should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited school aside from a guarantee of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited schools. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more desirable to future employers in the Peoria AZ job market.
What is the School's Reputation? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it's essential to check the reputations of any schools you are reviewing. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also contact several Peoria AZ hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums may signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internships Provided? Ask the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with local health care facilities. They are the optimal means to receive hands-on clinical training often not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish contacts within the local Peoria AZ healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Landing your first phlebotomist position will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Peoria AZ medical community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? Finally, it's critical to verify that the final school you select offers classes at times that are compatible with your busy schedule. This is particularly important if you opt to still work while attending college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Peoria AZ, make certain they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is in case you have to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Pick the Best Phlebotomist Training near Peoria Arizona
Making certain that you pick the most suitable phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this gratifying healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, there are several factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomy training programs can be offered in a number of educational institutes, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive assortment of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Course offerings may differ slightly across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to carefully research and compare each program prior to making your ultimate decision. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist program for you. And with the proper training, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Peoria AZ.