How to Choose the Best Phlebotomy Technician Training Course near San Luis AZ
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomy training near San Luis AZ is an essential initial step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting undertaking to evaluate and compare each 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 superior education. In fact, many potential students begin the process by considering 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Another option 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 locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you choose the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our conversation about online schools.
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Phlebotomy Technician Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their primary task, there is in fact far more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to check that the tools being used are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample needs to be correctly labeled with the patient's data. Afterward, paperwork needs to be properly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab screening process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in San Luis AZ labs and are accountable for making sure that samples are tested properly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient responsibilities, they might be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomists Employed?
The quickest response is wherever they treat patients. Their work environments are numerous and diverse, such as San Luis AZ hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They may be assigned to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a certain type of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be collecting blood from senior patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns solely. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients each day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to finish and furnishes a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest means to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they normally take two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are less available and as a four year program offer a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will probably want to be certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, most San Luis AZ employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. A few 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 phlebotomy tech, including Nevada and California. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomist training program that not only supplies a quality education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Certificates and Degrees
To begin with, let's dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can't receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A good component 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 completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical part of the training may be attended online, it might be a more convenient option for many San Luis AZ students. As an added benefit, many online programs are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some costs, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist college you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a premium education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online might be the best choice for you.
Should You Become a Phlebotomy Tech?First of all, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. As we have already discussed, the basic answer is a medical professional whose job is to draw blood. So of course anyone who decides to enter this profession must be able to handle blood and needles. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other San Luis AZ medical facilities, well this job may not be right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomists often work with nervous people who don’t like needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because many medical facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be required to work weekends, evenings and even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the blood and needles, and if you enjoy helping people and are compassionate and very patient, this could be the right profession for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges
Now that you have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the kind of program you intend 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 San Luis AZ in addition to the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online school. All of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only considerations when making your decision. Following are a few questions that you need to ask about each of the schools you are reviewing before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's very important to choose a phlebotomy program that meets the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a recognized regional or national accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited program in addition to an assurance of a superior education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification exam offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more desirable to prospective employers in the San Luis AZ job market.
What is the School's Reputation? In a number of states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it's important to check the reputations of all schools you are considering. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can research internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also check with a few San Luis AZ hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and see if they can provide any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomist 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 below these minimums might indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internships Provided? Find out from the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with area health care facilities. They are the ideal way to receive hands-on practical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local San Luis AZ healthcare community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Finding your first phlebotomist position will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement rate 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 an extensive network of professional contacts within the San Luis AZ medical community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it's crucial to make sure that the final school you pick provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is especially true if you opt to continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near San Luis AZ, make certain they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option as well. And if you have decided to study 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.
Enroll in the Best Phlebotomy Training Program near San Luis Arizona
Making sure that you pick the ideal phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomist training programs are found in a variety of academic institutions, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Course offerings can differ somewhat across the country as every state has its own requirements when it comes to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you need to diligently research and compare each school before making your ultimate decision. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the right phlebotomist program for you. And with the appropriate education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in San Luis AZ.