How to Find the Best Phlebotomy Tech Training Course near Peoria AZ
Selecting the right phlebotomist training near Peoria AZ is an important initial step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging undertaking to analyze and compare all of the training alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it's important that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you get a quality education. In reality, a large number of students begin their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional factor you may consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local 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 cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and must be part of your selection process as well. 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 select the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our discussion about online training.
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Phlebotomist Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. Although that is their main duty, there is actually much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to verify that the tools being used are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample needs to be accurately labeled with the patient's information. Next, paperwork has to be correctly filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab screening 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 actually work in Peoria AZ labs and are accountable for making certain that samples are tested correctly using the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't enough duties, they might be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The easiest response is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are many and diverse, including Peoria AZ medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood centers. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or young children to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomy techs, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting samples from a certain kind of patient. For example, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would only be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital setting would be collecting blood from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients each day.
Phlebotomy Education, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially two types of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes less than a year to finish and furnishes a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they typically require 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. After you have completed your training, you will probably want to be certified. Although not required in the majority of states, many Peoria AZ employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. Some of the primary certifying agencies 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 prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, including Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's important that you pick a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a premium education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Certificates and Degrees
To start with, let's resolve one possible misconception. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant component of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-clinical part of the training may be accessed online, it might be a more practical alternative for some Peoria AZ students. As an additional benefit, many online schools are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenses, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy school you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a superior education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online might be the ideal option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Since you now have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the kind of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the college is important if you will be commuting from Peoria AZ in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online program. Each of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for picking 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 colleges you are reviewing before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed before working as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and preps you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you enroll in should be accredited by a reputable regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to an assurance of a superior education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to sit for a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Peoria AZ job market.
What is the Program's Ranking? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's essential to check out the reputations of any colleges you are looking at. You can begin by requesting references from the schools 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 organizations for their reviews also. You can also talk to some Peoria 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 contact the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? To begin with, check with 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. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are considering should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums might signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internships Provided? Find out from the schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with local healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Peoria AZ healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the schools you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Peoria AZ healthcare community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it's crucial to confirm that the final college you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your active schedule. This is especially true if you opt to continue working while attending college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Peoria AZ, make sure they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option as well. 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 find out what the make-up policy is should you need to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Enroll in the Best Phlebotomy Training Program near Peoria Arizona
Making sure that you pick the most suitable phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare field. As we have addressed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be found in a wide range of academic institutions, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Course offerings may differ somewhat across the country as each state has its own criteria when it comes to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to carefully screen and compare each program before making your ultimate selection. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the best phlebotomist school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Peoria AZ.