Choosing a Phlebotomist Training Program Meridianville Alabama
Choosing the right phlebotomist training near Meridianville AL is a critical initial step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging task to investigate and compare each of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s necessary that you perform your due diligence to ensure that you get a quality education. In fact, a large number of students start the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional factor you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We’ll discuss a bit more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to remember is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors such as accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and need to be part of your selection process as well. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you select the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our conversation about online training.
Phlebotomy Technician Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal task, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to confirm that the tools being employed are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample needs to be accurately labeled with the patient’s data. Afterward, paperwork must be properly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Meridianville AL area labs and are responsible for ensuring that samples are tested correctly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient responsibilities, they can be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The most basic response is wherever patients are treated. Their Alabama workplaces are many and diverse, such as Meridianville hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They may be charged to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or young children to seniors. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting blood from a certain type of patient. For example, those working 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 exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Education, Certification and Licensing
There are basically 2 kinds of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to finish and furnishes a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Available at Meridianville area community and junior colleges, they typically require 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a four year program furnish a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. After you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not required in the majority of states, most Alabama employers require certification before employing technicians. Some of the key certifying agencies 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, like Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you pick a phlebotomy training program that not only furnishes a premium education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take in Alabama or where you will be practicing.
Phlebotomy Online Schools
To start with, let’s resolve one potential misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial part 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 in order to graduate. However since the non-practical part of the training can be accessed online, it may be a more practical option for many Meridianville students. As an added benefit, a number of online classes are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some costs, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be minimized as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist school you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can receive a superior education with this means 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.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Since you now have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You may have already picked the kind 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. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an online phlebotomist college. All of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for picking a program or school. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about each of the Alabamacolleges you are looking at prior to making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to select a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and prepares you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a respected regional or national 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 aside from a guarantee of a quality 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 agencies. Next, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more desirable to future Meridianville employers in the job market.
What is the Program’s Ranking? In numerous 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 all schools you are reviewing. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even talk to a few Meridianville area clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and find out if they can provide any recommendations. As a final thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Enough 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 clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are considering should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the Alabama schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with area health care facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on practical training frequently not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish contacts within the local Meridianville medical community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Landing your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the college has both a good reputation along with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Meridianville area health care community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it’s important to make sure that the ultimate college you select offers classes at times that will accomodate your active lifestyle. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Meridianville, check that they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option also. Even if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is in case you need to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Select the Right Phlebotomist College Meridianville ALMaking certain that you pick the ideal phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this gratifying medical 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 can be found in a wide range of academic institutes, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Program options may vary somewhat across the country as every state has its own criteria when it comes to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to carefully evaluate and compare each college prior to making your final decision. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can select the right program for you. And with the appropriate education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician.