How to Select the Right Phlebotomy Technician Training Program near Bell CA
Choosing the right phlebotomy technician training near Bell CA is a critical initial step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging task to evaluate and compare each of the training alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you do your due diligence to make certain that you receive a quality education. In reality, most potential students start their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We'll talk more about online schools later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and should be part of your selection process as well. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you select the best one for you. But prior to doing that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online classes.
Request Free information on Phlebotomy Training in Your Area
Phlebotomy Technician Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their principal duty, there is in fact much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the tools being employed are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient's information. Next, paperwork has to be properly filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Bell CA laboratories and are accountable for making certain that samples are tested correctly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough duties, they may be asked to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The most basic answer is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are many and varied, including Bell CA hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be charged to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing samples from a certain kind of patient. For example, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be drawing blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital setting would be collecting blood from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are basically 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes less than a year to finish and provides a basic education together with 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 phlebotomist degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at community and junior colleges, they typically require 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program furnish a more expansive background in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. While not required in most states, most Bell CA employers look for certification before hiring technicians. Some 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 several states that do require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, including California and Nevada. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's important that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only supplies a quality education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomy Schools
To begin with, let's dispel one potential mistaken belief. You can't get all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant part of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-practical component of the training can be attended online, it can be a more practical option for many Bell CA students. As an additional benefit, many online colleges are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenditures, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomy college you select 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 approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then earning your degree or certificate online may be the best option for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Since you now have a general 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 type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the school is relevant if you will be commuting from Bell CA in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online program. All of these decisions are a critical component of the process for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Following are a few questions that you should ask about all of the programs you are reviewing before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to California? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you pick should be accredited by a reputable national or regional accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a superior education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are often unavailable for non-accredited schools. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Bell CA job market.
What is the College's Ranking? 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 along with accreditation, it's important to check out the reputations of all schools you are looking at. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their students as part of their job placement program. You can research online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also contact several Bell CA hospitals or clinics that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the California school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Ample Training Provided? First, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomist 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 below these minimums might signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional medical facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on practical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local Bell CA health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Landing your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the school has both a good reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Bell CA healthcare community.
Are Classes Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's crucial to make sure that the ultimate program you select offers classes at times that will accommodate your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while attending college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Bell CA, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option also. And if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is in case you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Pick the Right Phlebotomy Training near Bell California
Making sure that you choose the most suitable phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are found in a variety of academic institutes, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive array of courses in medical care and health sciences. Course offerings may vary a bit across the country as each state has its own criteria when it comes to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to carefully research and compare each college prior to making your final selection. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy program for you. And with the proper training, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Bell CA.