How to Select the Right Phlebotomy Tech Training Program near Pike Road Alabama
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomy technician training near Pike Road AL is a critical initial step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting task to evaluate and compare each of the training alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you obtain a superior education. In reality, many students start the process by considering 2 of the qualifiers that first 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 review more about online schools later in this article. What's important to remember is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you pick the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our discussion about online classes.
Phlebotomy Tech Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. Although that is their principal task, there is in fact much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the tools being used are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient's information. Afterward, paperwork needs to be accurately filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Pike Road AL labs and are in charge of making certain that samples are analyzed correctly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough duties, they might be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?The easiest response is wherever they treat patients. Their work places are many and varied, including Pike Road AL hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be charged to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomy techs, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a certain type of patient. For instance, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be drawing blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital environment would be collecting blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomist Training, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to finish and offers a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they normally take 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less accessible and as a 4 year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, a number of Pike Road AL employers look for certification before employing technicians. Some of the primary 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 call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, including Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a premium education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Classes
To start with, let's dispel one likely misconception. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A good component of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-practical portion of the training can be accessed online, it may be a more convenient alternative for many Pike Road AL students. As an additional benefit, some online programs are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenses, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized as well. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist school you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a superior education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online may be the ideal option for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Since you now have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already picked the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school is significant if you will be commuting from Pike Road AL as well as the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist college. Each of these decisions are an important part of the process for selecting a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are a few questions that you should ask about all of the programs you are considering prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might have 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 preps you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you choose should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits 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 qualify to sit for a certification exam administered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are often not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to future employers in the Pike Road AL job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In a number of states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's important to check the reputations of all schools 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 screen internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also talk to some Pike Road AL hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and find out if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Included? To begin with, contact 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 no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with area healthcare facilities. They are the ideal means to receive hands-on clinical training often not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Pike Road AL health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Landing your first phlebotomist job will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Ask if the schools you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the program has both a good reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Pike Road AL medical community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's crucial to make sure that the final college you select offers classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is especially important if you choose to continue working while attending college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Pike Road AL, check that they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is should you have to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Should You Go to School to Become a Phlebotomy Technician?
Anyone who chooses this profession must be OK around needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Pike Road AL medical environments, well this job may not be 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 many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you will probably be expected to work weekends, evenings and even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the needles and blood, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are patient and compassionate, this may be the right job for you.
Choose the Right Pike Road Phlebotomy Training
Making sure that you choose the ideal phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding health care career position. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be offered in a wide range of academic institutes, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of programs in healthcare and medical 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 screen and compare each program before making your final decision. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the right phlebotomy college for you. And with the proper education, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Pike Road Alabama.