How to Select the Right Phlebotomist Training Classes near Moody Alabama
Choosing the right phlebotomist training near Moody AL is an essential initial step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a daunting task to investigate and compare each of the school alternatives that are accessible to you. However it's important that you complete your due diligence to ensure that you receive a quality education. In fact, a large number of students start the process by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional factor you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We'll talk more about online schools later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and should be part of your selection process too. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you select the best one for you. But prior to doing that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our discussion about online schools.
Phlebotomist Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their primary duty, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to verify that the tools being employed are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient's information. Afterward, paperwork has to be accurately completed in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory testing process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Moody AL laboratories and are responsible for making certain that samples are analyzed correctly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough duties, they might be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?The most basic response is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are numerous and diverse, including Moody AL hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be charged to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomy techs, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting samples from a certain kind of patient. For example, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be drawing blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital environment would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 types of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes under a year to finish and offers a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they typically require 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program furnish a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. Although not required in most states, most Moody AL employers require certification before hiring technicians. Some 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 phlebotomist, such as California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it's important that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only furnishes a premium education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Certificates and Degrees
To start with, let's dispel one likely mistaken belief. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant component of the course of study 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. But since the non-practical component of the training can be attended online, it may be a more convenient option for many Moody AL students. As an added benefit, some online classes are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some costs, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered as well. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist program you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can receive a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online may be the ideal option for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Now that you have a general idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already selected the kind of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school is relevant if you will be commuting from Moody AL as well as the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist school. All of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only considerations when arriving at your decision. Following are a few questions that you need to ask about all of the schools you are considering before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you pick should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited program aside from an assurance of a premium education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are frequently not available 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 Moody AL job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it's important to investigate the reputations of all colleges you are looking at. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also talk to some Moody AL hospitals or clinics that you might have an interest in working for and see if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can contact the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? To begin with, check with the Alabama state regulator where you will be practicing to learn 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 furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with area medical facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on clinical training frequently not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Moody AL health care community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the schools you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in positions, it's an indication that the program has both a good reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Moody AL health care community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? Finally, it's critical to verify that the ultimate program you pick provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is particularly important if you decide to still work while going to school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Moody AL, check that they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is should you need to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Should You Choose a Career as a Phlebotomy Technician?
Anyone who selects this profession must be able to handle needles and blood. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Moody AL medical facilities, well this profession may not be the best choice for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomists 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 required 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 compassionate and very patient, this could be the perfect job for you.
Choose the Right Moody Phlebotomy Training
Making sure that you pick the right phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding health care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a quality program. Phlebotomist training programs can be offered in a variety of academic institutions, including junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive assortment of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Course options may differ somewhat across the country as every state has its own mandates when it concerns phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must carefully screen and compare each school prior to making your ultimate decision. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the best phlebotomist school for you. And with the proper training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Moody Alabama.