Selecting a Phlebotomy Technician Training Program North Little Rock Alaska
Selecting the ideal phlebotomy technician school near North Little Rock AK is an essential initial step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging undertaking to assess and compare all of the training alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s vital that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you receive a superior education. In fact, a large number of potential students start the process by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional factor you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We’ll review a bit more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to remember is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process as well. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you choose the best one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our conversation about online schools.
Phlebotomist Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. While that is their principal responsibility, there is actually so much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the tools being used are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample must be correctly labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork must be properly completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab screening procedure. 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 in fact work in North Little Rock AK area laboratories and are responsible for making certain that samples are tested properly utilizing the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they may be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?
The most basic answer is wherever patients are treated. Their Alaska work places are many and diverse, such as North Little Rock medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be charged to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, based on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting samples from a specific kind of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be drawing blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with new patients each day.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to finish and furnishes a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at North Little Rock area junior and community colleges, they typically require two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program offer a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will probably want to be certified. While not required in the majority of states, most Alaska employers look for certification before employing technicians. A few of the principal 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 prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, such as Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you choose a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a quality education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take in Alaska or where you will be practicing.
Online Phlebotomist Certificates and Degrees
To begin with, let’s dispel one potential misconception. You can’t get all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial component of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be conducted 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 accessed online, it might be a more practical alternative for some North Little Rock students. As an added benefit, a number of online colleges are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist school you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a quality education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the ideal option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Since you now have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already picked the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is significant in addition to the tuition expense. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an phlebotomist online program. Each of these decisions are an important component of the procedure for choosing a program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Following are a few questions that you should ask about each of the Alaskacolleges you are reviewing before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Alaska? As mentioned previously, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s very important to choose a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be working and preps you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the School 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 several advantages to graduating from an accredited school aside from an assurance of a premium education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to future North Little Rock employers in the job market.
What is the Program’s Reputation? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it’s important to investigate the reputations of all colleges you are reviewing. 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 online school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also contact several North Little Rock area clinics or hospitals that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alaska school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Ample Training Provided? 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 phlebotomy program that you are considering should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything below these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the Alaska schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with area health care facilities. They are the optimal means to receive hands-on practical training often not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish contacts within the local North Little Rock health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Available? Landing your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the schools you are reviewing 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 college has both a good reputation together with a substantial network of professional contacts within the North Little Rock area medical community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s important to make sure that the final program you pick offers classes at times that will accomodate your hectic lifestyle. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while attending college. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near North Little Rock, check that they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is in case you have to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Find the Right Phlebotomy Program North Little Rock AKMaking certain that you choose 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 a number of factors that go into the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs can be available in a wide range of educational institutes, including junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive array of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options can vary a bit across the country as each state has its own criteria when it pertains to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you need to thoroughly screen and compare each program before making your ultimate selection. By addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the right school for you. And with the proper training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist.