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Become a Phlebotomist in San Luis Arizona

How to Enroll in the Right Phlebotomy Technician Training Classes near San Luis AZ

San Luis AZ phlebotomy tech drawing bloodSelecting the ideal phlebotomy school near San Luis AZ is an essential first step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting undertaking to assess and compare all of the training alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you perform your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a quality education. In fact, many potential students start their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional option you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We'll review a bit more about online classes later in this article. What's important to keep in mind is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and must be part of your decision process also. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you pick the best one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our conversation about online training.

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Phlebotomy Tech Job Summary

San Luis AZ phlebotomist laboratory techA phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. While that is their main duty, there is actually so much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to check that the tools being employed are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample needs to be correctly labeled with the patient's data. Afterward, paperwork must be correctly completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists in fact work in San Luis AZ labs and are accountable for ensuring that samples are tested properly using the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they can be required to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.

Where do Phlebotomists Practice?

The easiest answer is wherever there are patients. Their work places are numerous and varied, including San Luis AZ medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, 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 exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomists working in a general hospital environment would be drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from different patients on a daily basis.

Phlebotomy Technician Education, Certification and Licensing

blood analysis performed in San Luis AZ labThere are basically two kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to complete and furnishes a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they normally require 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a four year program provide a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not required in the majority of states, most San Luis AZ employers look for certification before 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 a few states that do require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, including California and Nevada. 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 premium education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.

Online Phlebotomist Schools

San Luis AZ student attending phlebotomy training onlineFirst, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant portion of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be conducted either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. A large number of courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical portion of the training can be attended online, it may be a more practical option for many San Luis AZ students. As an added benefit, a number of online classes are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some expenditures, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be lessened as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomy program you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can receive a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the best choice for you.

Should You Choose a Career as a Plebotomist?

Right out of the gate, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. As we have already discussed, the short answer is a medical professional who draws blood from patients. So naturally anyone who selects this profession must be comfortable with blood and needles. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other San Luis AZ medical environments, well this profession probably is not right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians often work around nervous people who hate needles or having their blood taken. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you will probably be required to work weekends, evenings and even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the needles and blood, and if you enjoy helping people and are compassionate and very patient, this may be the right job for you.

Questions to Ask Phlebotomy Programs

Questions to ask San Luis AZ phlebotomy schoolsSince you now have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already chosen the kind of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is important if you will be commuting from San Luis AZ as well as the tuition expense. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online college. All of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about all of the colleges you are looking at before making your final selection.

Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Arizona? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's very important to select a phlebotomist 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 phlebotomist program and school you choose should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits 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 take a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are frequently not available for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to potential employers in the San Luis AZ job market.

What is the School's Reputation? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it's imperative to check the reputations of all colleges you are considering. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also check with some San Luis AZ hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any recommendations. As a final 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 total compliance.

Is Ample 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 length of training, both clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are reviewing should furnish 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 comprehensive enough to provide sufficient training.

Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with area healthcare facilities. They are the ideal way to get hands-on practical training often not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local San Luis AZ health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.

Is Job Placement Support Provided? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the program has both a good reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the San Luis AZ healthcare community.

Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's critical to make sure that the ultimate college you pick offers classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is especially true if you decide to still work while attending college. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near San Luis AZ, make sure they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option also. Even if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is should you need to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.

Pick the Right Phlebotomy Training Program near San Luis Arizona

Making sure that you select the ideal phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this fulfilling health care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium college. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs are offered in a number of educational institutes, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive range of programs in medical care and health sciences. Training program offerings may vary somewhat from state to state as each state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you must thoroughly research and compare each program prior to making your ultimate decision. By addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomy college for you. And with the proper training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in San Luis AZ.