Picking a Phlebotomy Technician Training Program Carrollton Alabama
Selecting the ideal phlebotomy training near Carrollton AL is a critical first step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a difficult task to assess and compare all of the training options that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s vital that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you get a quality education. In reality, a large number of potential students begin their search by considering two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you may consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll review more about online schools later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including 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 pick the best one for you. But before we do that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online training.
Phlebotomy Technician Work Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. Although that is their main duty, there is in fact far more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork needs to be correctly filled out in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Carrollton AL area laboratories and are accountable for making sure that samples are analyzed properly utilizing the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they might be required to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The easiest response is wherever there are patients. Their Alabama work places are numerous and diverse, including Carrollton medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be charged to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to senior citizens. Some phlebotomy techs, based on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a particular kind of patient. For instance, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be drawing blood from senior patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be collecting blood from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Certification and Licensing
There are basically 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to finish and offers a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will include training to become a phlebotomy tech. Available at Carrollton area junior and community colleges, they normally require two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program offer a more extensive background in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. Although not required in the majority of states, a number of Alabama employers require certification before hiring technicians. Some 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 some states that do require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, including California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a premium education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take in Alabama or where you will be practicing.
Online Phlebotomist Certificates and Degrees
To begin with, let’s resolve one possible misconception. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A good component of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical component of the training can be attended online, it can be a more practical option for many Carrollton students. As an additional benefit, some online classes are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some expenses, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened also. Just confirm that the online phlebotomy college you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can receive a superior education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then earning your degree or certificate online may be the ideal choice for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Since you now 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 decided on the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is relevant as well as the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an online phlebotomy school. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for choosing a program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are some questions that you should ask about each of the Alabamacolleges you are reviewing before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed prior to practicing as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s very important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and prepares you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you choose should be accredited by a respected regional or national accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. First, if your program is not accredited, 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 financial aid or loans, 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 prospective Carrollton employers in the job market.
What is the College’s Reputation? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s imperative to check the reputations of any colleges you are reviewing. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can research online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also talk to several Carrollton local clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and see if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Included? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums may signify that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internships Included? Find out from the Alabama programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with local healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to get hands-on clinical training often not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish contacts within the local Carrollton medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the schools you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the school has both a good reputation together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Carrollton area medical community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? And last, it’s critical to confirm that the ultimate school you select provides classes at times that will accomodate your busy schedule. This is especially true if you choose to continue working while attending college. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Carrollton, check that they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is should you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Enroll in the Best Phlebotomy School Carrollton ALMaking sure that you select the ideal phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this gratifying healthcare field. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomy training programs can be available in a wide range of educational institutions, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Training program options may differ slightly from state to state as each state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to diligently research and compare each college prior to making your ultimate choice. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the right college for you. And with the proper training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician.