How to Choose the Best Phlebotomy Tech Training Program near San Tan Valley AZ
Choosing the ideal phlebotomy training near San Tan Valley AZ is a critical first step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging undertaking to evaluate and compare all of the training alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's vital that you complete your due diligence to make sure that you receive a superior education. In reality, a large number of students start the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Yet another option you might consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. We'll discuss more about online classes later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and should be part of your selection process as well. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you pick the right one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online classes.
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Phlebotomy Technician Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their main duty, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to check that the tools being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient's information. Afterward, paperwork needs to be properly filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in San Tan Valley AZ laboratories and are accountable for making certain that samples are analyzed correctly under the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient responsibilities, they might be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The quickest response is wherever they treat patients. Their work places are numerous and varied, including San Tan Valley AZ hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be charged to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or young children to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing blood from a particular kind of patient. For instance, those practicing 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 collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital environment would be drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would work with different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to complete and furnishes a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. 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 community and junior colleges, they usually take two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program offer a more extensive background in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not mandated in most states, most San Tan Valley AZ employers require certification before hiring technicians. A few of the primary certifying organizations 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 call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, including Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's important that you choose a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a quality education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomist Online Training
First, let's resolve one likely mistaken belief. You can't receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial component of the course of study will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical component of the training can be accessed online, it can be a more convenient option for some San Tan Valley AZ students. As an additional benefit, many online schools are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some costs, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be minimized also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy program you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a quality education with this means of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online may be the ideal option for you.
Should You Train to Be a Plebotomist?First of all, few people probably know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. As we have previously discussed, the short answer is a medical professional who draws blood from patients. So of course anyone who chooses this profession must be OK around blood and needles. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other San Tan Valley AZ medical facilities, well this profession may not be right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians routinely work around anxious people who don’t like needles or having their blood drawn. And because many medical facilities are open around the clock, you may be expected to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the blood and needles, and if you enjoy helping people and are compassionate and very patient, this may be the perfect profession for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Now that you have a general understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already picked the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is important if you will be commuting from San Tan Valley AZ as well as the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy program. All of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only considerations when making your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you should ask about all of the schools you are considering before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's very important to select a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you pick should be accredited by a highly regarded regional or national accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a superior education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, 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 getting loans or financial assistance, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited schools. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to future employers in the San Tan Valley AZ job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to 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 refer their students 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 even talk to several San Tan Valley AZ hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and see if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing 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 Enough Training Included? First, 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 clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums might indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Find out from the schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with area health care facilities. They are the ideal means to obtain hands-on practical training often not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local San Tan Valley AZ health care community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Landing your first phlebotomy 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 rate is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the college has both a good reputation together with a substantial network of professional contacts within the San Tan Valley AZ medical community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? Finally, it's crucial to confirm that the ultimate college you pick provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you opt to still work while going to school. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near San Tan Valley AZ, make certain they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, 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 should you need to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Choose the Right Phlebotomy Training Program near San Tan Valley Arizona
Making sure that you select the ideal phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare field. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomist training programs are available in a variety of educational institutes, such as community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options may vary a bit from state to state as every state has its own mandates when it pertains to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must diligently research and compare each college before making your ultimate selection. By addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the best phlebotomist school for you. And with the proper training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in San Tan Valley AZ.