How to Find the Right Phlebotomy Tech Training Classes near Enterprise Alabama
Picking the ideal phlebotomist training near Enterprise AL is an essential initial step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a difficult undertaking to assess and compare each of the training alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's important that you complete your due diligence to ensure that you get a quality education. In reality, a large number of prospective students start their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. Another factor you may consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We'll review a bit more about online classes later in this article. What's important to keep in mind is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and must be part of your decision process too. Toward that end, we will supply 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 prior to doing that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online classes.
Phlebotomy Technician Work Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal function, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to verify that the tools being used are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample must be properly labeled with the patient's information. Afterward, paperwork must be accurately filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Enterprise AL labs and are in charge of ensuring that samples are tested properly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough responsibilities, they may be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?The most basic answer is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are many and varied, including Enterprise AL hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting blood from a certain kind of patient. For instance, those practicing 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 newborns and mothers solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients every day.
Phlebotomist Training, Licensing and Certification
There are primarily 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to finish and furnishes 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, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they normally require 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program offer a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to be certified. While not required in most states, many Enterprise AL employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. Some 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 in order to practice as a phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's essential that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a premium education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Schools
First, let's resolve one potential mistaken belief. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial portion of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-clinical component of the training can be attended online, it might be a more convenient alternative for many Enterprise AL students. As an additional benefit, a number of online programs are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some costs, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist program you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a quality education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the right option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Since you now have a basic understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start your due diligence process. You might have already picked the kind of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is relevant if you will be commuting from Enterprise AL as well as the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online school. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the process for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are considering before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training performed prior to practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and readies you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you select should be accredited by a recognized 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 aside from a guarantee of a premium education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited programs. Finally, graduating from an accredited school can make you more desirable to future employers in the Enterprise AL job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's essential to check out the reputations of all colleges you are looking at. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also contact several Enterprise AL clinics or hospitals that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any recommendations. As a final thought, you can contact the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Included? First, check with the Alabama 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. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internships Included? Find out from the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional medical facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on clinical training frequently not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Enterprise AL healthcare community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Finding your first phlebotomy job will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation along with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Enterprise AL health care community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it's important to confirm that the ultimate program you pick offers classes at times that are compatible with your hectic lifestyle. This is especially important if you decide to still work while attending school. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Enterprise AL, make certain they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option also. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is in case you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Should You Go to School to Become a Phlebotomy Tech?
Anyone who selects this profession must be able to handle blood and needles. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Enterprise AL medical facilities, well this profession probably is not the best choice for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Techs often work around nervous people who don’t like needles or having their blood drawn. And because most health care facilities are open 24 hours, you will probably be required to work weekends, nights and 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 perfect job for you.
Pick the Right Enterprise Phlebotomist Course
Making certain that you choose the right phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding medical care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs can be offered in a variety of academic institutes, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options can differ a bit from state to state as every state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must diligently screen and compare each school prior to making your final selection. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy school for you. And with the appropriate training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Enterprise Alabama.