How to Pick the Right Phlebotomy Tech Training Program near Adelanto CA
Choosing the ideal phlebotomy training near Adelanto CA is a critical initial step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging task to analyze and compare all of the school alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you obtain a quality education. In fact, most potential students begin the process by considering 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. Yet another option you may look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. We'll talk a bit more about online classes later in this article. What's important to remember is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and need to 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 assessing to help you select 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 schools.
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Phlebotomist Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their principal task, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must verify that the tools being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample must be correctly labeled with the patient's information. Afterward, paperwork needs to be correctly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Adelanto CA labs and are accountable for making certain that samples are analyzed properly using the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't sufficient responsibilities, they may be required to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?
The most basic response is wherever they treat patients. Their work places are many and varied, such as Adelanto CA hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They can be charged to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or toddlers to seniors. Some phlebotomy techs, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing blood from a specific type 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 working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital environment would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with new patients each day.
Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to finish and offers a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Available at community and junior colleges, they usually require two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program furnish a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. After you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. Although not mandated in most states, most Adelanto CA employers require certification prior to hiring technicians. A few of the main certifying agencies 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 prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, like California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a quality education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Certificates and Degrees
To start with, let's dispel one likely misconception. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant part of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-practical part of the training may be attended online, it could be a more practical alternative for many Adelanto CA students. As an additional benefit, many online colleges are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenses, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be minimized also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist college you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a superior education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online may be the ideal option for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Now that you have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to start your due diligence process. You might have already picked the kind of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the college is significant if you will be commuting from Adelanto CA as well as the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online college. All of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about all of the programs you are reviewing before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to California? As mentioned previously, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training performed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be working and prepares you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you select should be accredited by a respected regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Adelanto CA job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In many 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 important to check the reputations of all schools you are looking at. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen online school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even contact some Adelanto CA clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and see if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the California school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Included? First, contact 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 furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums may signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the colleges you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with regional healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to get hands-on clinical training frequently not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local Adelanto CA medical community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it's an indication that the school has both a good reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Adelanto CA medical community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it's important to verify that the final school you choose provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is particularly important if you decide to still work while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Adelanto CA, check that they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is should you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Enroll in the Right Phlebotomist Training near Adelanto California
Making certain that you pick the most suitable phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this fulfilling health care field. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium program. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs are offered in a number of academic institutes, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive assortment of programs in medical care and health sciences. Training program options may vary slightly across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must thoroughly research and compare each program before making your final selection. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the right phlebotomist program for you. And with the appropriate education, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Adelanto CA.