How to Enroll in the Right Phlebotomy Technician Training Program near Adelanto CA
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomist school near Adelanto CA is an important initial step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting task to analyze and compare each of the training alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you do your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a superior education. In reality, most prospective students begin the process by considering 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional factor you may consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We'll review more about online schools later in this article. What's important to keep in mind is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors such as accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and need to be part of your selection process too. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you choose the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our discussion about online training.
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Phlebotomy Technician Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. Although that is their main responsibility, there is in fact much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient's information. Afterward, paperwork has to be properly filled out in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory screening procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists in fact work in Adelanto CA laboratories and are accountable for making certain that samples are analyzed properly using the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough responsibilities, they may be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The simplest response is wherever there are patients. Their work places are many and varied, such as Adelanto CA hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing samples from a certain type of patient. For example, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be collecting blood from elderly 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 blood from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from different patients every day.
Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially two types of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to finish and offers a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they typically require two years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a four year program provide a more expansive background in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. While not mandated in most states, many Adelanto CA 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 several states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, such as California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's essential that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a superior education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomist Online Certificates and Degrees
To begin with, let's dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can't receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant 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. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-clinical portion of the training may be attended online, it could be a more practical option for many Adelanto CA 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 lessened as well. Just confirm that the online phlebotomy school you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your degree or certificate online may be the right choice for you.
Should You Become a Plebotomist?First of all, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. As we have previously discussed, the basic answer is a medical professional whose job is to draw blood. So naturally anyone who selects this profession must be comfortable with blood and needles. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Adelanto CA medical environments, well this job probably is not right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Techs routinely work around anxious people who don’t like needles or having a blood sample taken. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you may be required to work weekends, evenings and 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 could be the right job for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Since you now have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already picked the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school is important if you will be commuting from Adelanto CA in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist school. All of these decisions are a critical component of the process for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Following are a few questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are looking at before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed before working as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's very important to choose a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for any exams you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you select 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 many benefits to graduating from an accredited program aside from an assurance of a premium education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are typically not available for non-accredited programs. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Adelanto CA job market.
What is the School's Ranking? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of any schools you are considering. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can screen online school rating and review services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also talk to several Adelanto CA clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can contact the California school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? First, contact the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional medical facilities. They are the ideal way to get hands-on practical training typically not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Adelanto CA health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Finding your first phlebotomist position will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both a good reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Adelanto CA medical community.
Are Class Times Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it's crucial to verify that the ultimate college you choose provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic schedule. This is especially true if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Adelanto CA, make certain they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is should you need to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Pick the Best Phlebotomy Training near Adelanto California
Making sure that you pick the right phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this fulfilling health care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a premium college. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be offered in a wide range of educational institutions, including junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive array of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Course options may vary a bit across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it pertains to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you must thoroughly evaluate and compare each program prior to making your final choice. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomy college for you. And with the proper education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Adelanto CA.