How to Select the Right Phlebotomy Tech Training Course near Banning CA
Picking the ideal phlebotomist training near Banning CA is an important first step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging undertaking to evaluate and compare each of the school options that are accessible to you. However it's important that you complete your due diligence to make sure that you receive a superior education. In fact, many students begin the process 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 online classes or commute to a local campus. We'll discuss more about online schools later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and should be part of your decision process too. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you pick the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our discussion about online classes.
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Phlebotomist Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. While that is their principal function, there is in fact much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to verify that the instruments being utilized are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample has to be properly labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork must be properly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Banning CA labs and are responsible for ensuring that samples are tested correctly under the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't enough responsibilities, they may be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The easiest answer is wherever there are patients. Their work places are numerous and varied, including Banning CA hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They can be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, based on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting samples from a particular type of patient. For instance, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital environment would be drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are primarily two types of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to complete and provides a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Available at junior and community colleges, they normally require 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less available and as a four year program offer a more expansive background in lab sciences. After you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. Although not mandated in the majority of states, most Banning CA employers look for certification before employing technicians. Some 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 some states that do require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, such as Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's essential that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only supplies a premium education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Classes
To begin with, let's dispel one potential mistaken belief. You can't get all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial component of the course of study will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-clinical portion of the training can be attended online, it may be a more practical option for some Banning CA students. As an added benefit, a number of online programs are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenses, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be lessened as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomist program you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can receive a quality education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online may be the best option for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Now that you have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, 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 degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the school is relevant if you will be commuting from Banning CA in addition to the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy program. All of these decisions are a critical part of the process for picking a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only considerations when making your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As mentioned previously, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that complies with the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be working and preps you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you pick should be accredited by a recognized regional or national accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from an assurance of a premium 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 previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Banning CA job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In a number of states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it's essential to investigate the reputations of any colleges you are looking at. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also talk to some Banning CA clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations. As a final thought, you can check with the California school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Included? To begin with, check with 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 looking at should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Ask the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with local healthcare facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on clinical training typically not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Banning CA medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Landing your first phlebotomist position will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the programs you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation together with a large network of professional contacts within the Banning CA health care community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? And last, it's critical to confirm that the final college you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is particularly true if you choose to still work while going to college. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Banning CA, make certain they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option also. Even if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is should you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Enroll in the Right Phlebotomist Training Program near Banning California
Making sure that you enroll in the ideal phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a premium program. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs are found in a number of academic institutes, such as community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide assortment of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program options can differ slightly across the country as each state has its own requirements when it pertains to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must diligently research and compare each school prior to making your final selection. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the best phlebotomist college for you. And with the appropriate training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Banning CA.