Picking a Phlebotomy Technician Course Linden Alabama
Choosing the right phlebotomy training near Linden AL is an important initial step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging undertaking to assess and compare each of the training alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s important that you do your due diligence to make sure that you receive a quality education. In fact, most potential students begin their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional factor you may consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We’ll discuss more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and must be part of your selection process also. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you should 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 continue our conversation about online training.
Phlebotomy Tech Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their primary function, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the instruments being utilized are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample has to be properly labeled with the patient’s data. Next, paperwork has to be correctly filled out in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Linden AL area laboratories and are accountable for making sure that samples are analyzed properly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they may be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Work?
The simplest response is wherever there are patients. Their Alabama work environments are many and varied, including Linden hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They can be charged to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomists, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a specific type of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be collecting blood from senior patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers solely. On the other hand, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital environment would be drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would work with new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically 2 types of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to finish and offers a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training to become a phlebotomist. Available at Linden area community and junior colleges, they normally require 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program offer a more extensive background in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. While not required in most states, a number of Alabama employers look for certification before hiring technicians. Some of the main certifying organizations 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, such as Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only furnishes a quality education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take in Alabama or where you will be practicing.
Phlebotomy Online Schools
To begin with, let’s resolve one potential misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant component of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical part of the training may be accessed online, it might be a more convenient alternative for some Linden students. As an additional benefit, a number of online schools are more affordable than their traditional counterparts. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomist program you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a quality education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your degree or certificate online might be the right choice for you.
Subjects 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 intend to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the college is relevant as well as the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an phlebotomist online school. All of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for picking a program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Following are some questions that you should ask about each of the Alabamacolleges you are looking at prior to making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Alabama? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training performed prior to working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. 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 practicing and preps you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you select should be accredited by a respected 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 previously listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are often not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more desirable to future Linden employers in the job market.
What is the School’s Ranking? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s important to check the reputations of any schools you are considering. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also contact a few Linden local clinics or hospitals that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any insights. As a final thought, you can contact the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Ample Training Included? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be working to find out 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 furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums might indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the Alabama programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with regional health care facilities. They are the optimal means to receive hands-on practical training often not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local Linden medical community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Getting your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Linden area healthcare community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s crucial to verify that the ultimate school you choose offers classes at times that are compatible with your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you decide to still work while attending school. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Linden, make certain they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option as well. Even 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 as a result of illness or emergencies.
Select the Best Phlebotomy Course Linden ALMaking sure that you pick the right phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this fulfilling health care career position. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a quality program. Phlebotomist training programs are available in a number of educational institutions, including community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive assortment of programs in medical care and health sciences. Program options can differ somewhat across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you must carefully evaluate and compare each program before making your ultimate selection. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the right school for you. And with the proper training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician.