How to Select the Best Phlebotomy Tech Training Classes near Antelope CA
Picking the ideal phlebotomy technician training near Antelope CA is an essential initial step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a difficult undertaking to investigate and compare each of the training options that are available to you. However it's important that you complete your due diligence to make sure that you receive a superior education. In reality, many students begin their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you might look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We'll talk a bit more about online schools later in this article. What's important to remember is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors including accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and must be part of your decision process too. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you pick the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online training.
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Phlebotomy Technician Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their principal responsibility, there is actually far more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to verify that the tools being utilized are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient's information. Next, paperwork has to be correctly filled out in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab screening process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Antelope CA laboratories and are in charge of making certain that samples are analyzed correctly utilizing the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they may be asked to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomists Employed?
The easiest answer is wherever patients are treated. Their workplaces are many and varied, such as Antelope CA hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They may be assigned to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or young children to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting samples from a certain kind of patient. For example, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would only be collecting blood from senior patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital environment would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Licensing and Certification
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes less than a year to complete and offers a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they typically take 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program furnish a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. Although not mandated in most states, many Antelope CA employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. A few of the principal certifying organizations include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are a few states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, such as California and Nevada. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a quality education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomy Certificates and Degrees
To begin with, let's dispel one likely mistaken belief. You can't get all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial portion of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-clinical part of the training may be accessed online, it could be a more convenient alternative for many Antelope CA students. As an added benefit, some online schools are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist school you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a quality education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your degree or certificate online might be the right choice for you.
Should You Train to Be a Plebotomist?First of all, not many people probably know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. As we have previously discussed, the basic definition is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. So of course anyone who decides to enter this profession must be comfortable with needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Antelope CA medical environments, well this profession probably is not the best choice for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomists routinely work around anxious people who hate needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you may be required to work weekends, evenings 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 patient and compassionate, this could be the right job for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Since you now have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already chosen the kind of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is significant if you will be commuting from Antelope CA in addition to the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy school. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the process for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about each of the colleges you are considering before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As mentioned previously, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states call for certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed prior to working as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that satisfies 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 Program Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a highly regarded regional or national accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited program in addition to an assurance of a quality education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited programs. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to prospective employers in the Antelope CA 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 quality. So along with accreditation, it's important to investigate the reputations of all schools you are reviewing. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also contact a few Antelope CA clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and find out if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the California school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Plenty of 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. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums may signify that the program is not expansive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in partnership with area medical facilities. They are the optimal way to receive hands-on clinical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Antelope CA medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Landing your first phlebotomy job will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Antelope CA healthcare community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it's crucial to confirm that the ultimate college you select offers classes at times that will accommodate your hectic schedule. This is especially true if you opt to still work while going to school. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Antelope CA, check that they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option as well. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is in case you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Choose the Best Phlebotomist Training near Antelope California
Making sure that you select the right phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium college. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs are found in a variety of educational institutes, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive range of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Program options can differ somewhat from state to state as every state has its own prerequisites when it concerns phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must diligently screen and compare each college prior to making your final selection. By addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can select the best phlebotomist program for you. And with the proper training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Antelope CA.