How to Enroll in the Best Phlebotomy Training Course near Surprise AZ
Choosing the ideal phlebotomist school near Surprise AZ is a critical initial step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult undertaking to assess 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 superior education. In reality, many potential students begin the process by considering 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We'll review more about online schools later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and should be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you pick the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our discussion about online training.
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Phlebotomist Work Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. Although that is their main function, there is in fact much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the tools being utilized are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample has to be properly labeled with the patient's information. Next, paperwork needs to be accurately completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Surprise AZ laboratories and are responsible for ensuring that samples are tested correctly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient responsibilities, they might be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Work?
The most basic answer is wherever patients are treated. Their workplaces are many and diverse, including Surprise AZ hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be charged to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or young children to senior citizens. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing samples from a particular kind of patient. For example, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home 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. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Education, Licensing and Certification
There are basically two kinds of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program normally takes less than a year to finish and offers a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Available at junior and community colleges, they typically take two years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less available and as a 4 year program provide a more expansive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. While not required in the majority of states, most Surprise AZ employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. A few of the key certifying agencies include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are some states that do require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, such as Nevada and California. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a superior education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomy Schools
To start with, let's dispel one potential mistaken belief. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial part of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-practical portion of the training may be accessed online, it may be a more convenient option for many Surprise AZ students. As an added benefit, a number of online colleges are less expensive than their traditional counterparts. And some expenses, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist program you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a superior education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online may be the best option for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Now that you have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start your due diligence process. You might have already chosen 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 campus is significant if you will be commuting from Surprise AZ as well as the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online college. Each of these decisions are a critical part of the process for selecting a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are considering before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed prior to working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's very important to choose a phlebotomist program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and preps you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a respected national or regional accrediting organization, such as 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 be able to sit for a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited schools. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Surprise AZ job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's imperative to check the reputations of any 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 online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can even talk to several Surprise AZ hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and see if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Ample Training Included? First, check with the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums might signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Ask the schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional medical facilities. They are the optimal way to obtain hands-on practical training typically not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish contacts within the local Surprise AZ health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the college has both an excellent reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the Surprise AZ health care community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? And last, it's crucial to confirm that the ultimate school you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is particularly important if you opt to still work while going to school. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Surprise AZ, make sure they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option also. Even 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 because of emergencies or illness.
Learn How to Become a Phlebotomist
Choose the Best Phlebotomist Training near Surprise Arizona
Making sure that you choose the ideal phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this gratifying health care field. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium college. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs can be offered in a wide range of academic institutes, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive assortment of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program options can differ slightly across the country as every state has its own mandates when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must thoroughly screen and compare each college prior to making your ultimate choice. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the right phlebotomy college for you. And with the proper education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Surprise AZ.