How to Choose the Best Phlebotomy Training Program near Beaumont CA
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomy school near Beaumont CA is an essential first step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging undertaking to investigate and compare each of the school options that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's important that you do your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a superior education. In fact, many potential students start the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional option you may consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. We'll review more about online schools 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 accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and need to 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 reviewing to help you choose the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online classes.
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Phlebotomy Technician Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. Although that is their primary task, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample needs to be properly labeled with the patient's information. Next, paperwork needs to be correctly filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists in fact work in Beaumont CA laboratories and are accountable for making sure that samples are analyzed properly using the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they may be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Work?
The most basic response is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are numerous and diverse, such as Beaumont CA medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomy techs, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a certain type of patient. For instance, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be collecting blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomists working in a general hospital environment would be drawing blood from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients each day.
Phlebotomist Training, Licensing and Certification
There are basically two kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to finish and offers a general 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, even though it's not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training to become a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they normally take two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are less available and as a 4 year program offer a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not required in most states, many Beaumont CA employers require certification prior to employing 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 require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, like California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it's essential that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a premium education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomy Online Schools
First, let's dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can't receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant portion of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical component of the training can be attended online, it may be a more practical alternative for many Beaumont CA students. As an additional benefit, a number of online schools are more affordable than their traditional counterparts. And some costs, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist college you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can receive a quality education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online might be the right option for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges
Now that you 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 selected the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school is important if you will be commuting from Beaumont CA as well as the cost of tuition. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist program. Each of these decisions are a critical part of the process for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are looking at before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed before working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that meets the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be working and prepares you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you enroll in should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a superior education. First, 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 organizations. Also, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are frequently not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to future employers in the Beaumont CA job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's important to check out the reputations of any schools 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 research online school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also contact several Beaumont CA hospitals or clinics that you may be interested 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 complaints have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Provided? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be working 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 reviewing should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with regional health care facilities. They are the ideal way to get hands-on clinical training typically not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Beaumont CA healthcare community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the programs you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in positions, it's an indication that the college has both an excellent reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the Beaumont CA health care community.
Are Classes Conveniently Scheduled? Finally, it's crucial to make sure that the final school you select offers classes at times that will accommodate your active schedule. This is particularly true if you opt to still work while going to college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Beaumont CA, make certain they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure 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 fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is in case you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Pick the Best Phlebotomy Training near Beaumont California
Making sure that you enroll in the most suitable phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium program. Phlebotomist training programs are available in a number of educational institutions, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide array of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Course offerings can differ slightly from state to state as each state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you must carefully evaluate and compare each program prior to making your ultimate decision. By addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomy program for you. And with the proper training, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Beaumont CA.