How to Pick the Right Phlebotomy Technician Training Program near Arden Arcade CA
Selecting the right phlebotomy technician school near Arden Arcade CA is an essential first step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging task to investigate and compare each of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it's important that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you obtain a superior education. In reality, most potential students start the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. Yet another option you might look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We'll talk a bit more about online schools later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process as well. Toward that end, we will supply a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you pick the best one for you. But prior to doing that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online training.
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Phlebotomist Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. Although that is their principal duty, there is actually far more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the instruments being employed are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample has to be properly labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork needs to be correctly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Arden Arcade CA laboratories and are in charge of making certain that samples are tested correctly using the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't sufficient responsibilities, they may be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomists Employed?
The quickest response is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are numerous and varied, including Arden Arcade CA hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be charged to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a certain type of patient. For instance, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would solely be collecting blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers solely. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be drawing blood from a wide range of patients and would work with different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomist 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 under a year to finish and provides a basic education as well as 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, although not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they normally take 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program offer a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. While not required in most states, a number of Arden Arcade CA employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. Some of the main 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, including California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's important that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a premium education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Certificates and Degrees
First, let's dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial part of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-practical part of the training may be attended online, it can be a more convenient alternative for some Arden Arcade CA students. As an added benefit, some online classes are more affordable than their traditional counterparts. And some expenditures, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered as well. Just confirm that the online phlebotomist program you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a quality education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then earning your degree or certificate online might be the ideal choice 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 definition is a medical professional who draws blood from patients. So naturally anyone who chooses this profession must be comfortable with blood and needles. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Arden Arcade CA medical environments, well this job may not be right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Techs tend to work around nervous people who hate needles or having a blood sample taken. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you may be expected to work weekends, evenings and even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the blood and needles, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are compassionate and very patient, this could be the perfect job for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Since you now have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start your due diligence process. You may have already picked the kind of program you wish 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 Arden Arcade CA in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist college. Each of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Following are several questions that you should ask about all of the colleges you are looking at before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to California? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's extremely important to select a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be working and readies you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you pick should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a superior education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Arden Arcade CA job market.
What is the Program's Ranking? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of any colleges 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 placement program. You can research online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even contact a few Arden Arcade CA clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any insights. As a final 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 Provided? First, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing 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 considering should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internships Included? Find out from the colleges you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with local healthcare facilities. They are the ideal means to get hands-on clinical training often not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Arden Arcade CA healthcare community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Landing your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in positions, it's an indication that the program has both a good reputation along with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Arden Arcade CA medical community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it's important to verify that the final college you select provides classes at times that are compatible with your hectic lifestyle. This is particularly true if you decide to continue working while attending college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Arden Arcade CA, make certain they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is should you need to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Enroll in the Right Phlebotomist Training near Arden Arcade California
Making sure that you pick the ideal phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding medical care field. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomist training programs can be available in a number of academic institutions, including community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide array of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Course options may differ somewhat across the country as every state has its own requirements when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must carefully screen and compare each program before making your ultimate choice. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the right phlebotomist school for you. And with the proper training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Arden Arcade CA.