How to Find the Right Phlebotomy Tech Training Classes near Wasilla Alaska
Selecting the ideal phlebotomist school near Wasilla AK is an essential first step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a difficult undertaking to evaluate and compare all of the school alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you complete your due diligence to ensure that you receive a quality education. In fact, a large number of potential students start their search by considering 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. Another factor you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We'll review a bit more about online schools later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors including accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and must be part of your selection process too. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you select the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online schools.
Phlebotomy Tech Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. While that is their primary task, there is actually so much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to verify that the tools being used are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample must be properly labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork must be properly filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Wasilla AK labs and are responsible for ensuring that samples are tested correctly under the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't sufficient responsibilities, they can be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomists Employed?The simplest response is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are many and varied, including Wasilla AK medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood banks. They can be charged to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a specific type of patient. For example, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients every day.
Phlebotomy Training, Licensing and Certification
There are basically two types of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to complete and offers a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest means to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they normally require 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a four year program furnish a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. Although not mandated in the majority of states, many Wasilla AK employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. A few of the principal certifying organizations include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are several states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's important that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a superior education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Certificates and Degrees
To start with, let's resolve one possible mistaken belief. You can't get all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant portion of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. A large number of courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-clinical portion of the training can be attended online, it could be a more convenient alternative for many Wasilla AK students. As an added benefit, some online programs are less expensive than their traditional counterparts. And some expenses, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist college you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a superior education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your degree or certificate online might be the best choice for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Courses
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 may have already picked the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is relevant if you will be commuting from Wasilla AK in addition to the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online program. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the process for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about each of the colleges you are reviewing before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount 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 extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be working and readies you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program 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 a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited school in addition to an assurance of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to prospective employers in the Wasilla AK job market.
What is the Program's Ranking? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it's important to check out the reputations of all colleges you are considering. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can research online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even talk to a few Wasilla AK hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any recommendations. As a final 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 total compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? First, check with the Alaska state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are considering should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything below these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the colleges you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with local healthcare facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on practical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Wasilla AK medical community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Landing your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the programs you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation together with a large network of professional contacts within the Wasilla AK medical community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it's critical to confirm that the ultimate school you pick offers classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is especially true if you decide to still work while attending school. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Wasilla AK, make certain they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is in case you have to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Should You Go to School to Become a Plebotomist?
Anyone who chooses this profession must be comfortable with needles and blood. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Wasilla AK medical facilities, well this profession may not be the best choice for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomists tend to work with nervous people who don’t like needles or having their blood drawn. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be required to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the needles and blood, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are patient and compassionate, this may be the right job for you.
Pick the Best Wasilla Phlebotomy Program
Making certain that you select the most suitable phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care career position. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are offered in a variety of academic institutions, including junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide assortment of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program offerings can vary somewhat across the country as every state has its own prerequisites when it pertains to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to carefully screen and compare each program before making your final selection. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist program for you. And with the proper training, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Wasilla Alaska.