How to Pick the Best Phlebotomy Training Course near Bentonville AR
Picking the right phlebotomy technician school near Bentonville AR is a critical first step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting task to investigate and compare each of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it's vital that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you receive a quality education. In reality, a large number of prospective students start their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another factor you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We'll discuss a bit more about online classes later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and need to be part of your decision process also. 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 prior to doing that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online schools.
Request Free information on Phlebotomy Training in Your Area
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 needs to check that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient's data. Afterward, paperwork needs to be correctly filled out in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory 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 infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Bentonville AR labs and are in charge of ensuring that samples are tested correctly utilizing the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't sufficient responsibilities, they can be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The quickest response is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are many and varied, including Bentonville AR hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing blood from a particular type of patient. For instance, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would solely be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital environment would be drawing blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients each day.
Phlebotomist Training, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to complete and offers a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at community and junior colleges, they normally take 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program provide a more expansive background in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will probably want to become certified. Although not required in the majority of states, a number of Bentonville AR employers require certification prior to employing 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 call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, like 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 furnishes a quality education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Training
To begin with, let's dispel one potential mistaken belief. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A good portion of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Many courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical portion of the training can be accessed online, it can be a more convenient alternative for many Bentonville AR students. As an additional benefit, many online schools are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some expenses, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist college you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can receive a premium education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online might be the right choice for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Now that you have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the college is significant if you will be commuting from Bentonville AR in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist program. Each of these decisions are an important component of the process for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you need to ask about each of the schools you are reviewing before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed before working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's very important to choose a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Arkansas or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you choose should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited school aside from a guarantee of a premium education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are frequently not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Bentonville AR job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist 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 colleges you are looking at. You can start 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 also. You can even contact several Bentonville AR clinics or hospitals that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Arkansas school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be working 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 considering should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums might signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Find out from the programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with local health care facilities. They are the optimal way to receive hands-on practical training often not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Bentonville AR healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Landing your first phlebotomist job will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a higher rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the college has both a good reputation together with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Bentonville AR healthcare community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's crucial to verify that the ultimate program you pick provides classes at times that are compatible with your busy schedule. This is particularly true if you opt to continue working while attending college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Bentonville AR, make sure they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option also. Even if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is in case you have to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Choose the Best Phlebotomist Training near Bentonville Arkansas
Making sure that you choose the most suitable phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding health care field. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomy training programs can be available in a wide range of academic institutions, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive array of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options can vary a bit across the country as every state has its own requirements when it pertains to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to diligently research and compare each school prior to making your ultimate selection. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomy college for you. And with the appropriate training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Bentonville AR.