How to Choose the Right Phlebotomy Technician Training Classes near Beaumont CA
Choosing the ideal phlebotomy technician school near Beaumont CA is an important first step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging task to assess and compare each of the training alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you do your due diligence to make certain that you get a quality education. In fact, a large number of prospective students begin their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you might consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We'll discuss more about online schools later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process also. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you pick the best one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online training.
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Phlebotomy Tech Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. While that is their principal duty, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to confirm that the tools being employed are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample needs to be accurately labeled with the patient's information. Afterward, paperwork needs to be accurately filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing process. 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 in fact work in Beaumont CA laboratories and are in charge of making certain that samples are analyzed properly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they might be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The most basic answer is wherever patients are treated. Their workplaces are numerous and varied, such as Beaumont CA medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood banks. They can be assigned to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to seniors. Some phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a certain type of patient. For example, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers solely. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital environment would be collecting blood from a wide range of patients and would work with new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program normally takes less than a year to finish and offers a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. 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 typically take two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are less available and as a 4 year program provide a more expansive background in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. Although not required in the majority of states, a number of Beaumont CA employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. A few of the principal certifying agencies 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 require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, such as Nevada and California. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only supplies a quality education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomist Online Certificates and Degrees
To begin with, let's dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can't get all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant portion of the course of study will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-clinical portion of the training may be attended online, it could be a more convenient option for many Beaumont CA students. As an added benefit, many online programs are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some costs, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomy school you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a premium education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your certificate or degree online may be the ideal choice for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Since you now have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to start 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 Beaumont CA in addition to the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist college. Each of these decisions are an important part of the process for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about all of the schools you are looking at prior to making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's very important to choose a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be working and preps you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school 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 several advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to an assurance of a superior education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to sit for a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are typically not available for non-accredited colleges. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the Beaumont CA job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it's important to investigate the reputations of all colleges you are looking at. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students 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 check with a few Beaumont CA hospitals or clinics that you might have an interest in working for and see if they can provide 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 total compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? First, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums might indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish sufficient training.
Are Internships Provided? Find out from the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with area medical facilities. They are the ideal means to get hands-on practical training typically not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Beaumont CA healthcare community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the programs you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Beaumont CA medical community.
Are Classes Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's important to confirm that the final college you select provides classes at times that are compatible with your active lifestyle. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while attending college. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Beaumont CA, make certain they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is should you need to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Choose the Right Phlebotomist Training Program near Beaumont California
Making certain that you pick the ideal phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this rewarding health care field. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium college. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are offered in a wide range of educational institutions, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive assortment of programs in medical care and health sciences. Course offerings can differ slightly across the country as every state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to carefully research and compare each program prior to making your ultimate choice. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy college for you. And with the proper education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Beaumont CA.