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Questions to Ask Phlebotomist 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 want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is important if you will be commuting from Pine Level AL as well as the cost of tuition. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online college. All of these decisions are a critical part of the process for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Following are some questions that you need to ask about all of the schools you are reviewing before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws 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 hours of practical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that meets the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you pick 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 in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are often not available for non-accredited schools. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more desirable to future employers in the Pine Level AL job market.
What is the School's Reputation? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, 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 start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can research internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even check with a few Pine Level AL hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and see if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and find out 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 find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums may signify that the program is not expansive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internships Included? Find out from the schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with area healthcare facilities. They are the optimal way to receive hands-on clinical training typically not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Pine Level AL medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Available? Getting your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the school has both a good reputation along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Pine Level AL health care community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it's important to make sure that the ultimate program you pick provides classes at times that are compatible with your busy schedule. This is especially important if you decide to still work while going to college. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Pine Level AL, check that they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is in case you need to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.