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Points to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Now that you have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already chosen the kind of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is important if you will be commuting from Fishhook AK as well as the tuition expense. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy college. All of these decisions are an important part of the process for selecting a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about all of the schools you are looking at before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed before working as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's very important to choose a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you choose should be accredited by a highly regarded 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 program aside from an assurance of a quality education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more desirable to future employers in the Fishhook AK job market.
What is the Program's Ranking? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of all colleges you are reviewing. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also talk to some Fishhook AK hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and see if they can provide any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Alaska school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Included? To begin with, check with the Alaska state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with area medical facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on practical training typically not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Fishhook AK health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Getting your first phlebotomist position will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in positions, it's an indication that the college has both an excellent reputation together with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Fishhook AK medical community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it's critical to confirm that the final program you pick provides classes at times that will accommodate your active schedule. This is especially important if you opt to still work while attending college. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Fishhook AK, make certain they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure 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 ask what the make-up procedure is should you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.