How to Enroll in the Best Phlebotomist Training Program near Chinle Arizona
Selecting the right phlebotomy school near Chinle AZ is a critical initial step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult undertaking to investigate and compare each of the school alternatives that are available to you. However it's important that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you obtain a quality education. In fact, many students begin their search by considering 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Another factor you might look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We'll discuss more about online schools later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and must be part of your decision process too. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you pick the right 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 Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. Although that is their principal duty, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to check that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample needs to be accurately labeled with the patient's data. Afterward, paperwork has to be correctly completed in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab testing procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Chinle AZ labs and are responsible for ensuring that samples are tested properly under the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't enough responsibilities, they might be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?The simplest response is wherever patients are treated. Their workplaces are numerous and diverse, including Chinle AZ hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be charged to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or young children to seniors. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting samples from a certain kind of patient. For instance, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing 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 drawing blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients every day.
Phlebotomist Training, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes less than a year to finish and provides a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they typically require two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a four year program offer a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will probably want to become certified. Although not mandated in the majority of states, many Chinle AZ employers look for certification before employing technicians. Some of the principal 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 call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, such as Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's important that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only supplies a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Classes
First, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A good portion of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-clinical portion of the training may be accessed online, it might be a more convenient alternative for many Chinle AZ students. As an additional benefit, many online schools are more affordable 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 college you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online may be the ideal option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Now that you have a general understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start 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 mentioned earlier, the location of the school is significant if you will be commuting from Chinle AZ as well as the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online program. 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 making your decision. Following are some questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are considering prior to making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and readies you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you select should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several advantages to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification exam offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to future employers in the Chinle AZ job market.
What is the School'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 in addition to accreditation, it's imperative to check 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 reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also check with some Chinle AZ hospitals or clinics that you might have an interest in working for and find out if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been submitted or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Included? First, check with the Arizona state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are reviewing should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums might indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internships Provided? Ask the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with area medical facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on clinical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Chinle AZ medical community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Ask if the schools you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in positions, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation along with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Chinle AZ medical community.
Are Class Times Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it's critical to confirm that the ultimate college you pick offers classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Chinle AZ, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is should you need to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Should You Go to School to Become a Phlebotomy Tech?
Anyone who chooses this profession must be OK around blood and needles. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Chinle AZ medical environments, well this job probably is not 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 a blood sample taken. And because most health care facilities are open 24 hours, you will probably be required to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the blood and needles, and if you enjoy helping people and are compassionate and very patient, this may be the right profession for you.
Choose the Right Chinle Phlebotomy Course
Making sure that you choose the right phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this fulfilling medical care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs are available in a variety of academic institutions, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program offerings may differ a bit from state to state as every state has its own mandates when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you need to thoroughly research and compare each college prior to making your ultimate decision. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the best phlebotomist program for you. And with the appropriate training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Chinle Arizona.