How to Choose the Right Phlebotomist School
Selecting the right phlebotomy training near Williamston SC is an essential initial step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging task to investigate and compare each of the training options that are available to you. However it’s important that you do your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a superior education. In reality, most prospective students begin their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We’ll discuss more about online classes later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind 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 must be part of your selection process also. 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 prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our conversation about online schools.
Phlebotomist Work Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal function, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to check that the instruments being utilized are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample needs to be properly labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork must be properly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing 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 pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Williamston SC laboratories and are in charge of making certain that samples are tested correctly using the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they might be required to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The quickest response is wherever they treat patients. Their work environments are many and varied, including Williamston SC hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomists, based on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a particular type of patient. For example, those working 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 exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program typically 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 fastest 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 incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they typically take two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a four year program furnish a more expansive background in lab sciences. After you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, most Williamston SC employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. Some 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 call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, such as Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s important that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a premium education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomist Online Classes
To start with, let’s dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial component 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 in order to graduate. But since the non-practical component of the training may be accessed online, it can be a more practical option for some Williamston SC students. As an additional benefit, a number of online classes are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some costs, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy college you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online may be the best option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Now that you have a basic understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already chosen the type of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is significant if you will be commuting from Williamston SC as well as the tuition expense. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy college. All of these decisions are an important 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 need to ask about all of the colleges you are looking at prior to making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to South Carolina? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for South Carolina or the state where you will be working and readies you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you choose should be accredited by a highly regarded regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited school aside from a guarantee of a premium education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to sit for a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Williamston SC job market.
What is the College’s Ranking? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it’s imperative to investigate the reputations of all colleges you are looking at. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their students as part of their job placement program. You can research online school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can even check with a few Williamston SC clinics or hospitals that you might be interested in working for and see if they can offer any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the South Carolina school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? First, contact the state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the schools you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with area healthcare facilities. They are the ideal means to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish contacts within the local Williamston SC healthcare community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Landing your first phlebotomist position will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the schools you are reviewing 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 a good reputation together with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Williamston SC medical community.
Are Class Times Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it’s critical to confirm that the ultimate school you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is particularly important if you opt to continue working while going to school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Williamston SC, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option as well. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is should you need to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Attending Phlebotomy Training near Williamston South Carolina?
If you have decided to enroll in a Phlebotomy School in the Williamston SC area, following is some interesting and perhaps useful information about the location of your future school campus.
Williamston, South Carolina
Williamston is located in northeastern Anderson County at 34°37′4″N 82°28′45″W / 34.61778°N 82.47917°W / 34.61778; -82.47917 (34.617699, -82.479256). The twin towns of Pelzer and West Pelzer are 2 miles (3 km) to the north. Anderson, the county seat, is 15 miles (24 km) to the southwest.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 3.7 square miles (9.5 km2), of which 3.6 square miles (9.4 km2) is land and 0.04 square miles (0.1 km2), or 1.01%, is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 3,791 people, 1,590 households, and 1,090 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,056.2 people per square mile (407.7/km²). There were 1,762 housing units at an average density of 490.9 per square mile (189.5/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 80.80% White, 17.67% African American, 0.08% Native American, 0.11% Asian, 0.66% from other races, and 0.69% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.74% of the population.
Find the Best Phlebotomist College near Williamston SC
Making certain that you enroll in the ideal phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this gratifying health care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs can be offered in a number of academic institutions, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive assortment of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Course options may vary slightly from state to state as each state has its own criteria when it pertains to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to diligently evaluate and compare each college prior to making your final choice. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Phlebotomy Classes Price. However, by addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist school for you. And with the appropriate training, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Williamston SC.
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