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Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Since you now have a basic understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already selected the kind 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 Goldstream AK as well as the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy school. All of these decisions are an important component of the process for picking a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about all of the colleges you are looking at before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states call for certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's very important to select a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you select 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 qualify to sit for a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited programs. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the Goldstream AK job market.
What is the Program'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 in addition to accreditation, it's essential to investigate 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 assistance program. You can research online school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also talk to some Goldstream AK clinics or hospitals that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations. As a final thought, you can contact the Alaska 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? To begin with, contact the Alaska state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should provide at least 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 expansive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Ask the colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional healthcare facilities. They are the ideal means to receive hands-on practical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish contacts within the local Goldstream AK healthcare community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Getting your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the schools you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in positions, it's an indication that the program has both a good reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the Goldstream AK medical community.
Are Class Times Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it's important to make sure that the final school you select provides classes at times that are compatible with your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you decide to still work while going to college. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Goldstream AK, make certain they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is in case you have to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.