How to Find the Best Phlebotomy Technician Training Program
Picking the right phlebotomy technician school near Laceys Spring AL is a critical initial step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting task to assess and compare each of the school options that are available to you. However it’s important that you complete your due diligence to ensure that you get a superior education. In fact, a large number of potential students begin the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that first 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 classes later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including 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 provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you pick the best one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online classes.
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Should You Become a Phlebotomy Tech?
First of all, not many people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The short definition is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. We will provide more details later. So naturally anyone who selects this profession must be able to handle needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Laceys Spring AL medical environments, well this job probably is not right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Techs tend to work with nervous people who don’t like needles or having their blood taken. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be expected to work weekends, nights and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the blood and needles, and if you enjoy helping people and are patient and compassionate, this may be the right job for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. While that is their main task, there is actually much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to check that the tools being employed are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient’s data. Next, paperwork needs to be properly filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab screening process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Laceys Spring AL laboratories and are in charge of ensuring that samples are analyzed properly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they can be required to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The most basic answer is wherever patients are treated. Their workplaces are many and diverse, including Laceys Spring AL hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or young children to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a particular type of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would only be collecting blood from elderly 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 environment would be collecting blood from a wide range of patients and would work with new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Licensing and Certification
There are basically two types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to complete and offers a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at community and junior colleges, they normally require 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a four year program provide a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. While not required in most states, many Laceys Spring AL employers look for certification before employing 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 call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it’s important that you enroll in a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a quality education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Training
First, let’s dispel one likely misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A good part of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-practical component of the training can be accessed online, it could be a more practical option for many Laceys Spring AL students. As an additional benefit, a number of online schools are less expensive than their traditional counterparts. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist college you select 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 superior education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online may be the best choice for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Now that you have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You might have already chosen 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 college is relevant if you will be commuting from Laceys Spring AL as well as the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy college. All of these decisions are a critical component of the process for selecting a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are reviewing before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed prior to working as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and prepares you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you enroll in 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 benefits to graduating from an accredited school aside from a guarantee of a superior education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are typically not available for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the Laceys Spring AL job market.
What is the School’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 in addition to accreditation, it’s essential to investigate the reputations of any schools you are reviewing. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their students as part of their job placement program. You can screen online school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also contact a few Laceys Spring AL clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and find out if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges 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 length of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums may signify that the program is not expansive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Ask the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to get hands-on practical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Laceys Spring AL medical community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the programs you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the college has both an excellent reputation along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Laceys Spring AL health care community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? And last, it’s critical to verify that the final college you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy lifestyle. This is particularly true if you opt to still work while attending school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Laceys Spring AL, check that they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is should you have to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Where to Find Online Phlebotomy Schools Laceys Spring Alabama
Making sure that you select the most suitable phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have discussed 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 variety of academic institutes, such as community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program offerings may vary slightly across the country as every state has its own criteria when it comes to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to carefully research and compare each school before making your final decision. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Where to Find Online Phlebotomy Schools and to get more information regarding Where to Find Evening Phlebotomy Courses. However, by addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy program for you. And with the appropriate education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Laceys Spring AL.
Other Bloody Wonderful Alabama Locations
Lacey's Spring, Alabama
Lacey's Spring is an unincorporated community in northeastern Morgan County, Alabama, United States at the base of Brindlee Mountain. It is included in the Decatur Metropolitan Area, as well as the Huntsville-Decatur Combined Statistical Area.
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