How to Select the Right Phlebotomist School
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomist training near Avondale AZ is an essential first step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a daunting task to evaluate and compare each of the school alternatives that are available to you. However it’s important that you perform your due diligence to ensure that you receive a superior education. In reality, many students begin the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. Another option you may consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We’ll discuss a bit more about online schools later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and should be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will supply 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 prior to doing that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online schools.
Phlebotomy Technician Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their principal duty, there is actually much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must verify that the tools being used are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample must be correctly labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork has to be properly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Avondale AZ labs and are responsible for ensuring that samples are tested properly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they may be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The easiest response is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are many and varied, including Avondale AZ medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be assigned to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or toddlers to seniors. Some phlebotomists, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing blood from a particular type of patient. For instance, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be drawing blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients each day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially two types of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to finish and offers a basic 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 on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they usually take 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a four year program furnish a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, many Avondale AZ employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. A few 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 California and Nevada. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a quality education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Training
To start with, let’s dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A good part of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Many courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-practical part of the training may be accessed online, it can be a more convenient alternative for many Avondale AZ students. As an additional benefit, some online colleges are less expensive than their traditional counterparts. And some expenses, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist college you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can receive a quality education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online might be the best choice for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Now that you have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You may have already decided on the kind of program you intend 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 Avondale AZ in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online school. Each of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are a few questions that you should ask about each of the programs you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Arizona? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training performed prior to working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s very important to choose a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and prepares you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you choose should be accredited by a reputable national or regional accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a superior education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Avondale AZ job market.
What is the College’s Reputation? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it’s imperative to investigate the reputations of any schools you are considering. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer 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 also. You can even contact several Avondale AZ clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and see if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the Arizona school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Included? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums might indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Ask the schools you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional health care facilities. They are the optimal way to receive hands-on clinical training frequently not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local Avondale AZ medical community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Finding your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the college has both a good reputation as well as a large network of professional contacts within the Avondale AZ health care community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it’s critical to confirm that the ultimate college you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is especially true if you decide to continue working while attending college. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Avondale AZ, check that they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, 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 policy is in case you need to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Attending Phlebotomy Training near Avondale Arizona?
If you have decided to enroll in a Phlebotomy School in the Avondale AZ area, following is some interesting and perhaps useful information about the location of your future school campus.
Avondale, incorporated in 1946, experienced rapid residential and commercial growth in the years since 1980. Once primarily a sparsely populated farming community with many acres of alfalfa and cotton fields, Avondale has transformed into a major bedroom suburb for Phoenix. Several major residential subdivisions and shopping centers have recently been built on former farmland, many adjacent to Interstate 10.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 41.3 square miles (107 km2), of which, 41.3 square miles (107 km2) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2) of it (0.15%) is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 35,883 people, 10,640 households, and 8,724 families residing in the city. The population density was 869.7 people per square mile (335.8/km²). There were 11,419 housing units at an average density of 276.8 per square mile (106.9/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 63.27% White, 5.20% Black or African American, 1.28% Native American, 1.89% Asian, 0.14% Pacific Islander, 24.32% from other races, and 3.89% from two or more races. 46.23% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Choose the Best Phlebotomist College near Avondale AZ
Making certain that you pick the right phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this gratifying healthcare career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomist training programs can be offered in a wide range of academic institutions, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive assortment of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program options can vary a bit from state to state as every state has its own requirements when it pertains to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must thoroughly research and compare each program before making your ultimate choice. You originally came to this website due to an interest in What Does It Take To Become A Phlebotomist. However, by addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist school for you. And with the proper education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Avondale AZ.
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