Phlebotomist Training Courses
How to Enroll in the Best One Near Foley Alabama
Enrolling in the right phlebotomy technician school near Foley AL is an essential first step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. There are many training options that are offered in your area and it can seem like an intimidating task to research and compare each one. Notwithstanding, to ensure that you will get a quality education you must complete your due diligence prior to making your selection. More often than not the two requirements that first come to mind for prospective students are the location of the school and the cost of tuition. Yet another factor you might consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. Online courses will be covered in more detail a bit later. What you need to remember is that there is a lot more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and should be part of your decision process as well. 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 address education options, licensing and certification, and online training.
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Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program normally takes less than a year to finish and provides a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they typically require two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program furnish a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will probably want to be certified. Although not mandated in most states, most Foley AL employers look for certification before employing technicians. A few of the primary certifying agencies 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 phlebotomy tech, including California and Nevada. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a superior education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing exams that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomist Online Colleges
First, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't get all of your phlebotomist training online. A good component of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be performed 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. However since the non-practical portion of the training can be attended online, it might be a more practical alternative for some Foley AL students. As an additional benefit, many online schools are more affordable than their traditional counterparts. And some expenditures, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy program you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can receive a premium education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your certificate or degree online may be the best option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Training Programs
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 might have already picked 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 campus is important if you will be commuting from Foley AL as well as the tuition expense. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist 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 making your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about all of the colleges you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for all examinations you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you pick 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 several benefits to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification exam administered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are often not available for non-accredited programs. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Foley AL job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In many 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 essential to check out the reputations of any colleges you are looking at. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also talk to several Foley AL clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and see if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Ample Training Provided? First, check with the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are reviewing should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums may signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with area medical facilities. They are the optimal way to obtain hands-on clinical training often not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Foley AL health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Finding your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the school has both a good reputation together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Foley AL healthcare community.
Are Class Times Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it's crucial to confirm that the final program you pick offers classes at times that are compatible with your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while going to school. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Foley AL, make certain they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option as well. And if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is in case you need to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Pick the Right Foley Phlebotomy Training Program
Making sure that you enroll in the most suitable phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding health care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomy training programs are offered in a number of educational institutions, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program offerings can vary a bit from state to state as every state has its own prerequisites when it pertains to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to diligently research and compare each school before making your final decision. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Foley Alabama.