How to Choose the Right Phlebotomy Technician Training Course near Daleville Alabama
Selecting the right phlebotomist school near Daleville AL is an essential initial step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a daunting undertaking to analyze and compare all of the school options that are available to you. However it's vital that you do your due diligence to make sure that you obtain a quality education. In fact, most students start the process by considering two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you may look into 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 keep in mind is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and should be part of your decision process too. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you pick the right one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online schools.
Phlebotomy Tech Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their primary task, there is actually so much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the instruments being utilized are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample needs to be properly labeled with the patient's information. Afterward, paperwork needs to be properly completed in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory 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 Daleville AL laboratories and are in charge of making certain that samples are tested correctly utilizing the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough responsibilities, they might be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?The easiest response is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are numerous and varied, including Daleville AL hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or young children to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting samples from a certain kind of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be collecting blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing 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 work with different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to finish and furnishes a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they typically require 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are less accessible and as a 4 year program furnish a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. Although not mandated in most states, most Daleville AL employers look for certification before employing technicians. Some of the primary certifying organizations include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are several states that do call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, such as California and Nevada. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's important that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a superior education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Schools
To start with, let's resolve one possible misconception. You can't get all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial component of the course of study will be practical 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. But since the non-clinical component of the training may be accessed online, it could be a more practical option for many Daleville AL students. As an added benefit, some online classes are less expensive than their traditional counterparts. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced also. Just verify that the online phlebotomist college you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a quality education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the right option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Since you now have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start your due diligence process. You may have already picked the kind 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 relevant if you will be commuting from Daleville AL in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist school. All of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure 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 should ask about each of the programs you are reviewing before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Alabama? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed prior to working as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and readies you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you choose should be accredited by a recognized regional or national accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited school in addition to an assurance of a superior education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to future employers in the Daleville AL job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In a number of states there is minimal 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 investigate the reputations of all colleges you are looking at. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their students as part of their job placement program. You can research online school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also talk to a few Daleville AL hospitals or clinics 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 complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Included? To begin with, contact the Alabama 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 looking at should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to furnish sufficient training.
Are Internships Provided? Find out from the colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in partnership with area medical facilities. They are the ideal means to get hands-on clinical training typically not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish contacts within the local Daleville AL health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support 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 provide 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 as well as a large network of professional contacts within the Daleville AL medical community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? Finally, it's crucial to verify that the final college you pick offers classes at times that are compatible with your busy lifestyle. This is especially important if you choose to still work while attending college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Daleville AL, make certain they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option as well. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is in case you need to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Should You Become a Phlebotomy Technician?
Anyone who decides to enter this profession must be able to handle needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Daleville AL medical environments, well this profession probably is not the best choice for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Techs routinely work with nervous people who don’t like needles or having their blood drawn. And because many medical 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 needles and blood, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are compassionate and very patient, this could be the right profession for you.
Choose the Right Daleville Phlebotomist School
Making sure that you select the most suitable phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality school. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be available in a number of educational institutes, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program options may differ somewhat from state to state as each state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to diligently research and compare each school prior to making your final selection. By addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy program for you. And with the appropriate training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Daleville Alabama.