Phlebotomist Training Classes
How to Find the Right One Near Hoover Alabama
Perhaps the most important decision you must make to enter the rewarding healthcare profession of phlebotomy is to choose the best phlebotomy training near Hoover AL. It may seem like a difficult undertaking to investigate and compare each of the school alternatives that are accessible to you. Notwithstanding, to ensure that you will get a top-notch education you must complete a detailed audit before making your selection. More often than not the two qualifications that first come to mind for prospective students are the location of the school and the cost of tuition. Yet another factor you might look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. Online courses will be discussed in greater detail a bit later. So when assessing phlebotomist training programs, location and cost shouldn’t be the only criteria you are looking at. Researching if the program is accredited or if the school has a job placement program must also be part of your evaluation process. 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 select the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our conversation about online schools.
It Takes Just a Few Minutes to Start Your Phlebotomy Career Below!
Should You Become a Phlebotomy Technician?
Right out of the gate, not many people are likely to know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The basic answer is a health care professional who draws blood from patients. So of course anyone who decides to enter this profession must be able to handle blood and needles. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Hoover AL medical environments, well this job may not be right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians often work around anxious people who hate needles or having their blood taken. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you may be required to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the needles and blood, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are compassionate and very patient, this could be the perfect job for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Licensing and Certification
There are basically two types of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program generally takes under a year to complete and provides a general education along with 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, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at community and junior colleges, they usually require 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less accessible and as a four year program offer a more expansive background in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. Although not mandated in the majority of states, a number of Hoover AL employers require certification before employing 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 a few states that do require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, like California and Nevada. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only supplies a premium education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomy Online Certificates and Degrees
To start with, let's resolve one potential misconception. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial part of the course of study will be practical 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. But since the non-practical part of the training may be attended online, it might be a more practical alternative for many Hoover AL students. As an added benefit, many online classes are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist college you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a premium education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online may be the right choice for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomist Certificate or Degree Programs
Now that you have a general understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already picked the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is significant if you will be commuting from Hoover AL in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist college. Each of these decisions are an important component of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only considerations when making your decision. Following are some questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are reviewing prior to making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As mentioned previously, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's very important to select a phlebotomist program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for any exams you may have 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 many advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to sit for a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Finally, graduating from an accredited school can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Hoover AL job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's essential to investigate the reputations of any colleges you are reviewing. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also talk to a few Hoover AL clinics or hospitals 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 Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Included? 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 clinical and classroom. As 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 practical training. Anything below these minimums might signify that the program is not expansive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internships Included? Find out from the schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with local healthcare facilities. They are the ideal means to get hands-on clinical training often not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Hoover AL health care community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Landing your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the schools you are reviewing 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 an excellent reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Hoover AL medical community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? Finally, it's important to verify that the final college you pick provides classes at times that are compatible with your hectic lifestyle. This is especially true if you choose to still work while going to school. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Hoover AL, make certain they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option also. Even if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is should you need to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Enroll in the Best Hoover Phlebotomy Training
Making certain that you pick the most suitable phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this gratifying health care field. As we have addressed in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs can be available in a variety of educational institutes, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive array of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program options can vary somewhat across the country as each state has its own mandates 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 decision. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomy program for you. And with the proper training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Hoover Alabama.