How to Choose the Right Phlebotomy Training Classes near Chino Valley Arizona
Picking the ideal phlebotomy technician school near Chino Valley AZ is a critical first step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting task to assess 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 superior education. In fact, most prospective students start their search by considering 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We'll talk more about online classes later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and should be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you pick the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online schools.
Phlebotomist Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. While that is their main duty, there is in fact much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the tools being employed are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample must be correctly labeled with the patient's data. Afterward, paperwork has to be correctly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab screening procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Chino Valley AZ labs and are accountable for making certain that samples are tested properly utilizing the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't enough duties, they may be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?The most basic answer is wherever patients are treated. Their work environments are many and diverse, including Chino Valley AZ medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be assigned to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a particular kind of patient. For example, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would only be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be collecting blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients each day.
Phlebotomy Training, Licensing and Certification
There are basically two types of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes less than a year to complete and offers a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they usually require two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program furnish a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. Although not required in the majority of states, a number of Chino Valley AZ employers look for certification before hiring technicians. A few of the main 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 phlebotomy tech, including Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's essential that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a quality education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Classes
To begin with, let's resolve one potential misconception. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant portion of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical part of the training may be attended online, it could be a more convenient alternative for some Chino Valley AZ students. As an added benefit, some online programs are less expensive than their traditional counterparts. And some expenses, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomist school you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can receive a quality education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the best option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Since you now have a general idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start your due diligence process. You may have already decided on 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 school is relevant if you will be commuting from Chino Valley AZ as well as the cost of tuition. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist school. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are some questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are looking at prior to making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Arizona? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed before working as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's extremely important to select a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for all examinations you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you choose should be accredited by a respected regional or national accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to an assurance of a premium education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently 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 Chino Valley AZ job market.
What is the School's Reputation? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's essential to check out the reputations of all colleges you are looking at. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their students as part of their job placement program. You can research internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also talk to some Chino Valley AZ hospitals or clinics that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Provided? To begin with, check with the Arizona state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should furnish 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 furnish sufficient training.
Are Internships Included? Find out from the colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in partnership with area medical facilities. They are the ideal way to receive hands-on practical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Chino Valley AZ healthcare community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the schools you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a high rate, signifying 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 Chino Valley AZ healthcare community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? And last, it's important to confirm that the ultimate college you choose offers classes at times that are compatible with your active lifestyle. This is particularly true if you opt to continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Chino Valley AZ, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option as well. 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 ask what the make-up policy is in case you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Should You Go to School to Become a Phlebotomy Tech?
Anyone who selects this profession must be able to handle needles and blood. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Chino Valley AZ medical facilities, well this profession may not be right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomists tend to work with anxious people who don’t like needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you may 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 Chino Valley Phlebotomist School
Making certain that you choose the ideal phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium program. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs can be offered in a wide range of academic institutions, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of programs in medical care and health sciences. Course offerings may vary slightly from state to state as every state has its own mandates when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you must carefully screen and compare each college prior to making your ultimate choice. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy program for you. And with the proper training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Chino Valley Arizona.