Home >> California >> Alameda >> Phlebotomy Classes Near Me


Become a Phlebotomist in Alameda California

How to Enroll in the Best Phlebotomist School near Alameda CA

Alameda CA phlebotomist drawing blood from patientPicking the ideal phlebotomist school near Alameda CA is an essential initial step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging undertaking to analyze and compare each of the school alternatives that are available to you. However it's vital that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you get a quality education. In fact, many prospective students begin the process by considering 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We'll talk a bit more about online classes later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors such as reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and should be part of your selection process too. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you choose the ideal 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

Phlebotomist Job Summary

Alameda CA phlebotomy laboratory technicianA phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. Although that is their primary duty, there is in fact far more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the instruments being used are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample must be properly labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork must be properly filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory screening process. 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. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Alameda CA labs and are accountable for ensuring that samples are analyzed properly under the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they can be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.

Where do Phlebotomists Practice?

The simplest response is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are many and varied, such as Alameda CA medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood centers. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to seniors. Some phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing samples from a particular type of patient. For example, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be drawing blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be collecting blood from a wide range of patients and would work with new patients each day.

Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing

blood testing performed in Alameda CA labThere are basically 2 types of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to finish and offers a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will include training to become a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they typically take 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program provide a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. After you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. While not required in the majority of states, a number of Alameda CA employers look for certification before hiring technicians. A few of the primary 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, like Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a superior education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take.

Phlebotomist Online Schools

Alameda California woman attending phlebotomy classes onlineFirst, let's dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial part of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical portion of the training may be accessed online, it might be a more practical option for some Alameda CA students. As an added benefit, many online classes are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some expenditures, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomy school you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your certificate or degree online may be the ideal option for you.

Should You Choose a Career as a Phlebotomy Tech?

First of all, not many people probably know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. As we have previously discussed, the basic answer is a health care 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 nervous in hospitals or other Alameda CA medical facilities, well this job probably is not the best choice 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 most health care facilities are open 24 hours, you may be expected to work weekends, nights and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the blood and needles, and if you enjoy helping people and are compassionate and very patient, this may be the right profession for you.

Topics to Ask Phlebotomist Programs

What to ask Alameda CA phlebotomy schoolsNow that you have a general idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate 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 school is significant if you will be commuting from Alameda CA in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online school. Each of these decisions are an important part of the process for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are a few questions that you should ask about all of the colleges you are looking at before making your ultimate selection.

Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to California? As mentioned previously, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed before working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's very important to choose a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for all exams you may be required to take.

Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you choose should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits 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 qualify to sit for a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited schools. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Alameda CA job market.

What is the School's Reputation? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's essential to check out the reputations of all colleges you are reviewing. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their students as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also talk to a few Alameda CA hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and see if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the California school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in full 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 amount of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums may signify that the program is not expansive enough to furnish adequate training.

Are Internships Provided? Find out from the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with local healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to receive hands-on clinical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local Alameda CA health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.

Is Job Placement Help Provided? Landing your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the programs you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Alameda CA healthcare community.

Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it's important to verify that the final program you pick offers classes at times that will accommodate your active schedule. This is particularly true if you decide to still work while going to college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Alameda CA, make certain they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option also. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is should you need to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.

Enroll in the Best Phlebotomy Training near Alameda California

Making sure that you select the most suitable phlebotomist training is an important 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 superior college. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are found in a variety of educational institutions, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Program options can differ somewhat across the country as every state has its own mandates when it concerns phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you must thoroughly screen and compare each program before making your ultimate decision. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the ideal phlebotomist school for you. And with the proper training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Alameda CA.