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Since you now have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to start your due diligence process. You may have already picked 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 college is relevant if you will be commuting from Valley AL in addition to the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy college. Each of these decisions are an important component of the procedure for selecting a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only considerations when making your decision. Following are several questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are looking at prior to making your final selection.

Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for any exams you may be required to take.

Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you choose should be accredited by a recognized regional or national 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 in addition to an assurance of a premium education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take 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, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Valley AL job market.

What is the College's Reputation? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it's imperative to check the reputations of any schools you are reviewing. 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 research online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also contact several Valley AL clinics or hospitals that you may have an interest in working for and find out if they can provide 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 full compliance.

Is Sufficient Training Included? First, 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. 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 less than these minimums may signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish sufficient training.

Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with area medical facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on clinical training typically not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local Valley AL health care community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.

Is Job Placement Support Available? Landing your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the support 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 school has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the program has both a good reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Valley AL medical community.

Are Class Times Available as Needed? And last, it's important to make sure that the ultimate school you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is especially true if you decide to still work while attending school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Valley AL, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option also. And if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is in case you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.

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