How to Pick the Right Phlebotomy Tech Training Course near Banning CA
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomy school near Banning CA is a critical initial step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting undertaking to investigate and compare all of the training options that are available to you. However it's necessary that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you get a superior education. In reality, a large number of students start their search by considering 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you might consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. We'll review a bit more about online classes later in this article. What's important to remember is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and need to be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you select the best one for you. But before we do that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our conversation about online schools.
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Phlebotomy Technician Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their primary duty, there is in fact much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to check that the tools being used are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient's data. Afterward, paperwork needs to be accurately 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 in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Many phlebotomists in fact work in Banning CA laboratories and are accountable for ensuring that samples are tested correctly using the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient responsibilities, they might be required to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The quickest answer is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are numerous and varied, such as Banning CA medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a particular kind of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would only be collecting blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital environment would be collecting samples from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from different patients each day.
Phlebotomist Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two types of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program generally takes under a year to complete and provides a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will include training to become a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they normally take two years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less available and as a four year program provide a more expansive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, a number of Banning CA employers require certification before hiring technicians. A few of the key certifying organizations include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are some states that do call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, including Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you pick a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a superior education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Schools
To begin with, let's resolve one likely misconception. You can't get all of your phlebotomy training online. A good part of the curriculum 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. However since the non-practical part of the training can be accessed online, it can be a more convenient alternative for some Banning CA students. As an additional benefit, a number of online programs are more affordable than their traditional counterparts. And some costs, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced also. Just verify that the online phlebotomy school you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can receive a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the best option for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Now that you have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already selected the kind of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is relevant if you will be commuting from Banning CA in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy program. All of these decisions are a critical part of the process for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are looking at before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As mentioned previously, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training performed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be working and readies you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you select should be accredited by a respected national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from an assurance of a quality education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Banning CA job market.
What is the School's Ranking? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it's imperative to check the reputations of any colleges you are considering. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their students as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also contact some Banning CA hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the California school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? First, contact the state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with regional medical facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Banning CA health care community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Banning CA health care community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's critical to make sure that the final college you select provides classes at times that are compatible with your hectic lifestyle. This is especially important if you choose to still work while attending school. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Banning CA, make sure they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option also. And if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is in case you need to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Enroll in the Right Phlebotomy Training near Banning California
Making certain that you select the right phlebotomy 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 contribute toward the selection of a quality school. Phlebotomist training programs are offered in a wide range of academic institutes, such as community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive array of programs in medical care and health sciences. Program options can vary slightly across the country as each state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you must thoroughly evaluate and compare each school before making your ultimate selection. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can select the best phlebotomy college for you. And with the proper education, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Banning CA.