How to Choose the Best Phlebotomy Training Program near Bisbee Arizona
Choosing the right phlebotomy training near Bisbee AZ is an essential first step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging undertaking to assess and compare each of the school options that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's important that you do your due diligence to make certain that you obtain a superior education. In reality, many students start the process by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you might look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We'll discuss more about online schools later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and need to be part of your decision process also. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you pick the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our conversation about online training.
Phlebotomy Tech Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal responsibility, there is actually so much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to check that the instruments being utilized are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient's information. Next, paperwork needs to be accurately completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Bisbee AZ laboratories and are in charge of ensuring that samples are analyzed properly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough duties, they might be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?The simplest answer is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are numerous and varied, including Bisbee AZ medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomy techs, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a specific kind of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be collecting blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomists working 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 Education, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially 2 kinds of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to finish and offers a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomy tech. Available at junior and community colleges, they typically take 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program offer a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will probably want to be certified. Although not required in the majority of states, many Bisbee AZ employers look for certification before hiring technicians. Some of the key certifying agencies include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are some states that do require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, including Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's important that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a quality education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Training
To begin with, let's resolve one potential misconception. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial portion of the course of study will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. A large number of courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-clinical portion of the training can be accessed online, it may be a more convenient alternative for many Bisbee AZ students. As an added benefit, some online schools are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy school you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a quality education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online might be the ideal choice for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Now that you have a general understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it's time to start your due diligence process. You may 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 significant if you will be commuting from Bisbee AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online program. Each of these decisions are an important component of the process for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only considerations when making your decision. Following are a few questions that you should ask about each of the programs you are considering before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and preps you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you pick should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited school aside from a guarantee of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Bisbee AZ job market.
What is the College's Ranking? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's important to check the reputations of any schools you are considering. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can research online school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even talk to several Bisbee AZ hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and see if they can offer any recommendations. As a final thought, you can contact the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? To begin with, check with the Arizona state regulator where you will be practicing 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 looking at should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internships Provided? Ask the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with local healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to get hands-on practical training often not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local Bisbee AZ medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Getting your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the programs you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher 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 Bisbee AZ healthcare community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it's crucial to confirm that the final program you select provides classes at times that are compatible with your active schedule. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Bisbee AZ, check that they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option as well. And if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is should you have to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Should You Choose a Career as a Phlebotomy Tech?
Anyone who selects this profession must be OK around needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Bisbee AZ medical environments, well this profession probably is not right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Techs 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 may be required to work weekends, nights and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the needles and blood, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are patient and compassionate, this could be the right job for you.
Choose the Right Bisbee Phlebotomy Course
Making certain that you enroll in the most suitable phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare field. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium college. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are available in a wide range of educational institutes, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide array of programs in medical care and health sciences. Training program options can differ a bit from state to state as each state has its own criteria when it comes to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must carefully research and compare each school before making your ultimate decision. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the right phlebotomist school for you. And with the appropriate training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Bisbee Arizona.