How to Pick the Right Phlebotomy Technician Training Classes near Apache Junction Arizona
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomist school near Apache Junction AZ is an important initial step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging undertaking to investigate and compare each of the school options that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you complete your due diligence to make sure that you get a superior education. In reality, many students start the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another factor you might look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. We'll discuss more about online classes later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is a lot more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and need to be part of your selection process too. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you choose the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our discussion about online training.
Phlebotomy Tech Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. Although that is their main task, there is actually far more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must confirm that the instruments being utilized are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample has to be properly labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork must be accurately filled out in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Apache Junction AZ labs and are in charge of ensuring that samples are analyzed properly under the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't sufficient responsibilities, they may be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Work?The easiest response is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are numerous and varied, such as Apache Junction AZ hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomy techs, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing samples from a specific type of patient. For instance, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be drawing blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital environment would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients every day.
Phlebotomist Education, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two kinds of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to finish and furnishes a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomist. Available at junior and community colleges, they normally take two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program provide a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. Although not mandated in the majority of states, most Apache Junction AZ employers require certification prior to 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 several states that do require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, including California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only supplies a superior education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomy Training
To begin with, let's resolve one possible mistaken belief. You can't get all of your phlebotomist training online. A good component of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical portion of the training may be accessed online, it could be a more convenient option for many Apache Junction AZ students. As an added benefit, some online programs are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some costs, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomist school you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a quality education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online might be the ideal option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Since you now have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already selected 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 important if you will be commuting from Apache Junction AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy school. All of these decisions are an important part 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 several questions that you should ask about all of the programs you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As mentioned previously, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and prepares you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you choose should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited school 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 exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Apache Junction AZ job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's imperative to check the reputations of any schools you are looking at. 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 screen online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even talk to a few Apache Junction AZ hospitals or clinics that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Included? To begin with, contact the Arizona state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. 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 below these minimums might signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internships Included? Find out from the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with area healthcare facilities. They are the ideal means to receive hands-on practical training typically not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local Apache Junction AZ healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a high rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it's an indication that the college has both a good reputation together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Apache Junction AZ health care community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's critical to confirm that the ultimate college you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is particularly true if you choose to continue working while attending college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Apache Junction AZ, make sure they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option also. Even 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 due to emergencies or illness.
Should You Train to Be a Plebotomist?
Anyone who chooses this profession must be OK around blood and needles. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Apache Junction AZ medical facilities, well this profession may not be right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Techs tend to work with anxious people who hate needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because many medical facilities are open around the clock, you may be expected 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 compassionate and very patient, this could be the perfect job for you.
Pick the Right Apache Junction Phlebotomy Training
Making sure that you select the right phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding medical care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomist training programs are available in a wide range of educational institutions, including community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive assortment of programs in medical care and health sciences. Course offerings can differ slightly across the country as each state has its own requirements when it pertains to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to diligently evaluate and compare each program before making your ultimate decision. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the right phlebotomy school for you. And with the proper education, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Apache Junction Arizona.