How to Choose the Right Phlebotomy Training Program
Selecting the right phlebotomist school near Weyers Cave VA is an important initial step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a daunting undertaking to investigate and compare all of the school alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it’s necessary that you perform your due diligence to make certain that you obtain a superior education. In fact, many students start their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Another factor you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We’ll review more about online classes later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and must be part of your selection process too. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you choose the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our discussion about online classes.
Phlebotomy Technician Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. Although that is their principal duty, there is actually so much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample must be properly labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork needs to be properly filled out in order 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 pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Weyers Cave VA labs and are responsible for ensuring that samples are tested properly utilizing the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they may be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomists Employed?
The easiest answer is wherever they treat patients. Their work environments are numerous and diverse, including Weyers Cave VA hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They may be charged to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting samples from a certain type of patient. For example, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be collecting blood from senior patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers solely. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be collecting blood from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from new patients each day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes less than a year to finish and offers a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest means 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 to become a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they usually take two years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a four year program furnish a more expansive background in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, most Weyers Cave VA employers require certification prior to employing technicians. A few 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 call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, like California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a quality education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Training
To begin with, let’s dispel one possible misconception. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant portion of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-clinical part of the training can be attended online, it could be a more practical option for many Weyers Cave VA students. As an additional benefit, some online classes are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenses, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered also. Just confirm that the online phlebotomist college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a superior education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the best option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Now that you have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to begin 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 relevant if you will be commuting from Weyers Cave VA as well as the tuition expense. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist program. Each of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for selecting a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about all of the schools you are looking at prior to making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed before working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s very important to select a phlebotomist program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Virginia or the state where you will be working and readies you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you choose should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a premium education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Weyers Cave VA job market.
What is the School’s Reputation? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it’s important to investigate 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 placement program. You can screen online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even talk to a few Weyers Cave VA hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and find out if they can offer any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Virginia school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Adequate 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 amount of training, both clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything below these minimums may indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with area health care facilities. They are the ideal way to receive hands-on practical training typically not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Weyers Cave VA medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Finding your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a higher rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the Weyers Cave VA health care community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? Finally, it’s critical to verify that the ultimate program you pick offers classes at times that will accommodate your busy lifestyle. This is particularly true if you choose to still work while attending school. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Weyers Cave VA, check that they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is in case you have to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Attending Phlebotomy Training near Weyers Cave Virginia?
If you have decided to enroll in a Phlebotomy School in the Weyers Cave VA area, following is some interesting and perhaps useful information about the location of your future school campus.
Weyers Cave, Virginia
Weyers Cave (/ˈwɪərz/ WEERZ) is a census-designated place (CDP) in Augusta County, Virginia, United States. The population was 2,473 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Staunton–Waynesboro Micropolitan Statistical Area.
Weyers Cave is the site of the first chapter (1927) of the Future Farmers of Virginia, later to become the National FFA Organization. It is also the site of Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport and the main campus of Blue Ridge Community College.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,225 people, 462 households, and 354 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 185.1 people per square mile (71.4/km²). There were 490 housing units at an average density of 74.1/sq mi (28.6/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 96.73% White, 0.90% African American, 0.08% Asian, 0.98% from other races, and 1.31% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.73% of the population.
Find the Best Phlebotomist School near Weyers Cave VA
Making sure that you pick the ideal phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare field. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium college. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs are found in a variety of academic institutes, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive assortment of programs in medical care and health sciences. Program offerings can differ somewhat across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it concerns phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to carefully evaluate and compare each program prior to making your ultimate choice. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Phlebotomy Certification Classes. However, by addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the right phlebotomist school for you. And with the appropriate training, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Weyers Cave VA.
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