How to Pick the Best Phlebotomy Tech Training Classes near Boyle Heights CA
Enrolling in the right phlebotomy school near Boyle Heights CA is a critical first step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult undertaking to evaluate and compare all of the school options that are available to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you receive a quality education. In reality, a large number of potential students start the process 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 review a bit more about online schools later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and must be part of your selection process too. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you select the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our discussion about online classes.
Request Free information on Phlebotomy Training in Your Area
Phlebotomist Work Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. Although that is their principal function, there is in fact far more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to check that the tools being used are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork needs to be accurately completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Boyle Heights CA labs and are accountable for making sure that samples are analyzed correctly using the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't enough responsibilities, they might be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The quickest answer is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are numerous and varied, including Boyle Heights CA medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood centers. They may be tasked 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 samples from a particular kind of patient. For example, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would solely be collecting blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital environment would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Education, Licensing and Certification
There are basically 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes less than a year to finish and furnishes a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will include training to become a phlebotomist. Available at junior and community colleges, they normally require two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a four year program furnish a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not required in most states, most Boyle Heights CA employers require certification prior to employing 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 a few states that do call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's essential that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a premium education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Certificates and Degrees
To start with, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant portion of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical component of the training can be accessed online, it can be a more practical alternative for some Boyle Heights CA students. As an additional benefit, many online programs are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenditures, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomist college you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a quality 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 option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Now that you have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start your due diligence process. You may have already picked the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is relevant if you will be commuting from Boyle Heights CA in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online college. All of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you need to ask about all of the colleges you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to California? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed prior to working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's very important to select a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for any exams you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you pick should be accredited by a reputable national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited program in addition to an assurance of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Boyle Heights CA job market.
What is the School's Reputation? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it's important to check the reputations of any schools 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 agencies for their reviews also. You can even contact some Boyle Heights CA hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the California school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Included? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out 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 furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums might signify that the program is not expansive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internships Provided? Ask the colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in partnership with regional medical facilities. They are the optimal means to get hands-on clinical training typically not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Boyle Heights CA health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the assistance 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 the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Boyle Heights CA medical community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? Finally, it's important to make sure that the final college you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while going to school. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Boyle Heights CA, make certain they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is should you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Pick the Right Phlebotomist Training near Boyle Heights California
Making certain that you select the most suitable phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care career position. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs can be offered in a wide range of academic institutes, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive range of programs in medical care and health sciences. Program options can vary a bit across the country as each state has its own mandates when it comes to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to diligently evaluate and compare each school before making your ultimate choice. By addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the ideal phlebotomist college for you. And with the proper training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Boyle Heights CA.