How to Enroll in the Right Phlebotomy Tech Training Course near Daleville Alabama
Picking the right phlebotomy training near Daleville AL is an important initial step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a daunting task to investigate and compare all of the school options that are available to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you receive a quality education. In fact, a large number of prospective students start their search by considering 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional factor you might look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. We'll talk a bit more about online classes 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 important considerations and should be part of your decision process too. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you select the right one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online classes.
Phlebotomist Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their main task, there is actually far more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the instruments being used are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample needs to be properly labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork has to be accurately completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Daleville AL laboratories and are in charge of making certain that samples are tested properly under the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough responsibilities, they may be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?The most basic answer is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are numerous and varied, including Daleville AL hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to seniors. Some phlebotomy techs, based on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a particular kind of patient. For instance, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be drawing blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be drawing blood from a wide range of patients and would work with new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially two kinds of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes less than a year to finish and provides a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest means to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomy tech. Offered at community and junior colleges, they usually take two years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less accessible and as a 4 year program offer a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will probably want to become certified. Although not required in most states, most Daleville AL employers require certification before employing technicians. A few 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 some states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, such as Nevada and California. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's important that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomy Training
First, let's resolve one potential mistaken belief. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A good portion of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Many courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical part of the training may be attended online, it could be a more convenient alternative for many Daleville AL students. As an additional benefit, a number of online colleges are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some expenditures, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be lessened also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy college you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can receive a quality education with this means of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online might be the right choice for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Now that you have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the college is important if you will be commuting from Daleville AL as well as the cost of tuition. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist college. All of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for selecting a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed prior to working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomist program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and prepares you for any exams you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you pick should be accredited by a reputable regional or national accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Daleville AL job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In a number of states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it's essential to check out the reputations of all schools you are reviewing. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their students as part of their job placement program. You can research online school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can even talk to some Daleville AL clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Included? First, check with the Alabama state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with local medical facilities. They are the ideal way to get hands-on practical training often not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local Daleville AL healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation together with a large network of professional contacts within the Daleville AL medical community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it's critical to make sure that the final program you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is particularly important if you opt to still work while going to college. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Daleville AL, make sure they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option as well. And if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is should you need to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Should You Go to School to Become a Phlebotomy Tech?
Anyone who decides to enter this profession must be able to handle blood and needles. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Daleville AL medical facilities, well this job probably is not the best choice for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians tend to work with anxious people who hate needles or having a blood sample taken. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you may be required to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the needles and blood, and if you enjoy helping people and are compassionate and very patient, this may be the perfect profession for you.
Pick the Best Daleville Phlebotomy Program
Making sure that you pick the ideal phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a quality school. Phlebotomist training programs are offered in a wide range of educational institutes, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of programs in medical care and health sciences. Program offerings can differ somewhat across the country as every state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to carefully evaluate and compare each college before making your ultimate choice. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist program for you. And with the proper training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Daleville Alabama.