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Become a Phlebotomist in Phoenix Arizona

How to Enroll in the Best Phlebotomy School near Phoenix AZ

Phoenix AZ phlebotomist drawing blood from patientEnrolling in the right phlebotomist school near Phoenix AZ is a critical initial step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging undertaking to assess and compare all of the training options that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you do your due diligence to make certain that you receive a quality education. In reality, most prospective students begin their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Another factor you might consider is whether to attend online classes 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 much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and must be part of your decision process too. 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 ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our conversation about online classes.

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Phlebotomy Technician Work Description

Phoenix AZ phlebotomist laboratory technicianA phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their principal duty, there is in fact much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must confirm that the instruments being used are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample has to be properly labeled with the patient's information. Next, paperwork must be correctly completed to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab screening process. 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 Phoenix AZ labs and are accountable for ensuring that samples are analyzed properly using the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough responsibilities, they can be called upon to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.

Where do Phlebotomists Work?

The most basic response is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are numerous and diverse, including Phoenix AZ hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or young children to seniors. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting blood from a particular type of patient. For example, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be drawing blood from senior patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients on a daily basis.

Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing

blood analysis done in Phoenix AZ labThere are basically two types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to finish and provides a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will include training to become a phlebotomy tech. Available at junior and community colleges, they usually require two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a four year program provide a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will probably want to be certified. Although not required in most states, most Phoenix 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 phlebotomist, like Nevada and California. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it's important that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a superior education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing exams that you are required or elect to take.

Online Phlebotomist Schools

Phoenix AZ woman attending phlebotomy school onlineFirst, let's resolve one likely misconception. You can't receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial portion of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be carried out 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-practical part of the training can be accessed online, it may be a more convenient alternative for many Phoenix AZ students. As an additional benefit, many online schools are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some expenses, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist program you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online may be the right option for you.

Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Schools

Now that you have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already picked the type of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is significant if you will be commuting from Phoenix AZ in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist college. All of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about all of the schools you are reviewing before making your final decision.

Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Arizona? As mentioned previously, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed before working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that satisfies 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 Program Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you pick should be accredited by a recognized national or regional 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 premium education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are typically not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to future employers in the Phoenix AZ job market.

What is the School's Ranking? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's important to investigate the reputations of any colleges you are considering. 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 research online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also talk to some Phoenix AZ hospitals or clinics that you might have an interest in working for and find out 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 colleges are in full compliance.

Is Adequate Training Provided? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to provide adequate training.

Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with area health care facilities. They are the ideal means to get hands-on practical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local Phoenix AZ medical community. And they look good on resumes also.

Is Job Placement Help Offered? Landing your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the college has both a good reputation along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Phoenix AZ health care community.

Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it's important to make sure that the ultimate program you pick provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is especially important if you choose to still work while attending school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Phoenix AZ, check that they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. Even if you have decided to attend 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 need to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.

Learn How to Become a Phlebotomist

Enroll in the Best Phlebotomist Training Program near Phoenix Arizona

Making certain that you select the most suitable phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this rewarding health care field. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomist training programs are available in a wide range of educational institutions, including community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program offerings can differ somewhat across the country as every state has its own mandates when it pertains to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must thoroughly evaluate and compare each college before making your final choice. By addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist program for you. And with the appropriate training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Phoenix AZ.