How to Enroll in the Right Phlebotomy Training Course near Farmers Loop Alaska
Selecting the right phlebotomy training near Farmers Loop AK is an essential first step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult task to evaluate and compare all of the school options that are available to you. However it's vital that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you obtain a superior education. In fact, a large number of potential students start the process by considering two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you might look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We'll review a bit more about online classes later in this article. What's important to remember is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and must be part of your selection process too. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you select 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.
Phlebotomist Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their main responsibility, there is actually far more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to check that the instruments being used are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample needs to be correctly labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork needs to be properly filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Farmers Loop AK labs and are responsible for ensuring that samples are analyzed correctly utilizing the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient responsibilities, they can be called upon to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?The simplest response is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are numerous and diverse, including Farmers Loop AK hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be charged to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or toddlers to seniors. Some phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting samples from a certain type of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be collecting blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Education, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to complete and furnishes a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they usually take 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less accessible and as a four year program furnish a more expansive background in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. While not required in most states, a number of Farmers Loop AK employers require certification before employing technicians. A few of the primary certifying organizations include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are a few states that do require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, like Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a premium education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomist Online Training
To begin with, let's resolve one possible misconception. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant portion of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-practical part of the training may be accessed online, it can be a more practical alternative for some Farmers Loop AK students. As an additional benefit, some online schools are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some costs, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered also. Just verify that the online phlebotomy school you enroll in 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 approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then earning your certificate or degree online may be the right choice for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Courses
Now that you have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already decided on 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 college is significant if you will be commuting from Farmers Loop AK in addition to the tuition expense. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online school. Each of these decisions are an important part of the process for selecting a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about each of the schools you are looking at before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Alaska? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed prior to working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's very important to select a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a respected national or regional accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a quality education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to sit for a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Finally, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Farmers Loop AK job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In many states there is minimal 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 investigate the reputations of all colleges you are reviewing. 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 online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also contact a few Farmers Loop AK hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and see if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alaska school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? To begin with, check with the Alaska 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 phlebotomist program that you are looking at 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 signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internships Included? Ask the programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional health care facilities. They are the ideal means to obtain hands-on clinical training frequently not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Farmers Loop AK health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Getting your first phlebotomist position will be a lot 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 college has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both a good reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the Farmers Loop AK health care community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it's important to verify that the ultimate school you choose offers classes at times that are compatible with your hectic schedule. 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 Farmers Loop AK, make sure they are available at those times. Additionally, 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 completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is in case you need to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Should You 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 Farmers Loop AK medical facilities, well this job may not be the best choice for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Techs routinely work with anxious people who don’t like needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be required to work weekends, nights and even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the blood and needles, and if you enjoy helping people and are compassionate and very patient, this may be the perfect job for you.
Choose the Right Farmers Loop Phlebotomist Course
Making sure that you enroll in the ideal phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this rewarding medical care field. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomy training programs are available in a variety of academic institutes, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program offerings may differ somewhat from state to state as each state has its own prerequisites when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must thoroughly screen and compare each program prior to making your ultimate selection. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist college for you. And with the appropriate education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Farmers Loop Alaska.