How to Enroll in the Best Phlebotomist Training Course near Brea CA
Selecting the right phlebotomy technician school near Brea CA is a critical initial step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult task to assess and compare each of the training options that are accessible to you. However it's important that you perform your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a superior education. In fact, many prospective students begin their search by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Yet another factor you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby 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 far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and should be part of your selection process as well. Toward that end, we will furnish 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 before we do that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our conversation about online schools.
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Phlebotomy Tech Work Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. While that is their principal responsibility, there is in fact much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must confirm that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient's information. Afterward, paperwork has to be correctly completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Brea CA labs and are accountable for making sure that samples are analyzed correctly under the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they can be called upon to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The simplest response is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are numerous and varied, including Brea CA hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They can be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a certain kind of patient. For example, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be drawing blood from senior patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers solely. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital environment would be drawing blood from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients every day.
Phlebotomist Training, Licensing and Certification
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to complete and furnishes a basic education as well as 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 exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomy tech. Available at community and junior colleges, they usually require 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will probably want to be certified. While not required in most states, most Brea CA employers look for certification before hiring technicians. Some of the primary 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 call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, including California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's essential that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a premium education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomy Training
To start with, let's resolve one likely misconception. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A good component of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical component of the training can be accessed online, it could be a more practical alternative for some Brea CA students. As an added benefit, some online programs are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some costs, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy program you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a superior education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online may be the ideal option for you.
Should You Train to Be a Plebotomist?Right out of the gate, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. As we have already discussed, the basic answer is a health care professional who draws blood from patients. So of course anyone who selects this profession must be OK around needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Brea CA medical facilities, well this profession may not be right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomists routinely work with anxious people who hate needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because most health care facilities are open 24 hours, you may be expected to work weekends, nights and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the needles and blood, and if you enjoy helping people and are patient and compassionate, this may be the right job for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Now that you have a general idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start your due diligence process. You might have already decided on 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 important if you will be commuting from Brea CA as well as the cost of tuition. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist school. Each of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Following are a few questions that you should ask about all of the colleges you are reviewing before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed before working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomist program that fulfills the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you pick should be accredited by a reputable regional or national accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a superior education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Brea CA job market.
What is the School's Reputation? In a number of states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's essential to check the reputations of any schools you are considering. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can research internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even talk to a few Brea CA hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and see 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 colleges are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Included? 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 clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are considering should provide no less than 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 offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional medical facilities. They are the optimal way to obtain hands-on clinical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Brea CA healthcare community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Available? Landing your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the programs you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Brea CA medical community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? And last, it's crucial to confirm that the ultimate program you select offers classes at times that are compatible with your busy schedule. 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 Brea CA, make certain they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is in case you have to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Choose the Right Phlebotomy Training Program near Brea California
Making certain that you enroll in the ideal phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this gratifying health care field. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a quality program. Phlebotomist training programs can be available in a wide range of educational institutions, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of programs in medical care and health sciences. Training program options can vary slightly from state to state as every state has its own criteria when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must thoroughly research and compare each school before making your ultimate selection. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist school for you. And with the appropriate training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Brea CA.