How to Pick the Right Phlebotomist Training Program
Selecting the ideal phlebotomist school near Sunspot NM is an important first step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult task to evaluate and compare all of the school options that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s important that you do your due diligence to make sure that you obtain a superior education. In reality, most potential students start the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional factor you may look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. We’ll review a bit more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and should be part of your decision process too. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you choose the right one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online training.
Phlebotomy Tech Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. While that is their principal responsibility, there is in fact far more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the tools being utilized are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample must be properly labeled with the patient’s data. Afterward, paperwork has to be properly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing process. 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. Some phlebotomists actually work in Sunspot NM laboratories and are in charge of making sure that samples are tested properly using the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they may be called upon to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?
The simplest response is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are many and diverse, including Sunspot NM hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They may be assigned to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or young children to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomists, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a particular kind of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers solely. On the other hand, phlebotomists working in a general hospital environment would be drawing blood from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from different patients each day.
Phlebotomy Education, Certification and Licensing
There are basically 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to complete and provides a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at community and junior colleges, they normally take two years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a four year program offer a more expansive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. While not mandated in most states, a number of Sunspot NM employers require certification prior to hiring technicians. Some of the key 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 in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, like Nevada and California. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a superior education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomist Online Certificates and Degrees
To start with, let’s dispel one likely mistaken belief. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial component of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Many courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-practical portion of the training can be attended online, it may be a more practical alternative for many Sunspot NM students. As an added benefit, some online schools are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some costs, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy school you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a premium education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online may be the right option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Since you now have a basic understanding 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 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 Sunspot NM as well as the cost of tuition. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy college. All of these decisions are an important component of the process for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are looking at prior to making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for New Mexico or the state where you will be working and prepares you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you choose should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are typically not available 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 Sunspot NM job market.
What is the School’s Reputation? 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 imperative to check out the reputations of all colleges you are considering. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job placement program. You can research online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also talk to some Sunspot NM hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and see if they can provide any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the New Mexico school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything below these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the schools you are considering if they have an internship program in partnership with area health care facilities. They are the optimal means to get hands-on practical training often not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Sunspot NM medical community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Landing your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the programs you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement percentage 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 an extensive network of professional contacts within the Sunspot NM healthcare community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? Finally, it’s critical to verify that the ultimate school you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy lifestyle. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while attending college. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Sunspot NM, make certain 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 attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is should you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Attending Phlebotomy Training near Sunspot New Mexico?
If you have decided to enroll in a Phlebotomy School in the Sunspot NM area, following is some interesting and perhaps useful information about the location of your future school campus.
Sunspot, New Mexico
Sunspot is an unincorporated community, located in the Sacramento Mountains, in Otero County, New Mexico, United States. It is located within the Lincoln National Forest, 18 miles south of Cloudcroft. Its elevation is 9200 feet. The Sunspot Solar Observatory is located in Sunspot in the Sacramento Mountains.
It was named after the presence of the National Solar Observatory on Sacramento Peak, in a vote that was allegedly rigged by the observatory's director John Evans. The road leading to Sunspot from Cloudcroft is New Mexico State Road 6563, named for the brightest wavelength of hydrogen emission, H-alpha. This scenic byway features signposts marking the relative locations of the planets from the sun in proportion to their distance to Sunspot.
The telescope is open to the public, and the visitors center offers guided tours of the site on Saturdays and Sundays. On other days there is a self-guided 1/2 mile trail around the telescope and White Sands overlook.
Select the Ideal Phlebotomist College near Sunspot NM
Making certain that you choose the right phlebotomy training is an important 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 premium college. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be offered in a variety of academic institutes, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide assortment of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Course offerings can differ slightly across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it pertains to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must carefully screen and compare each program before making your ultimate decision. You originally came to this website due to an interest in How To Be A Certified Phlebotomist. However, by asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomy program for you. And with the appropriate education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Sunspot NM.
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