Phlebotomist Training Courses
How to Pick the Best One Near Hueytown Alabama
Picking the ideal phlebotomist school near Hueytown AL is an important first step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. There are numerous training programs that are offered in your area and it might seem like an intimidating undertaking to research and compare each one. Nevertheless it's important that you do your due diligence to make certain that you obtain a quality education. In fact, many students start their search by considering 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. Whether you will commute to classes or participate online is another consideration as well. We'll talk more about online classes later in this article. So when assessing phlebotomist training courses, location and cost shouldn’t be the sole criteria you are looking at. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and should be part of your selection process as well. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you pick 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 classes.
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Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The quickest answer is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are many and varied, such as Hueytown AL hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a certain type of patient. For example, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be drawing blood from elderly patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns solely. On the other hand, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide range of patients and would work with different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Training, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to finish and furnishes a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they usually require 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less available and as a four year program furnish a more expansive background in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. While not required in the majority of states, many Hueytown AL employers require certification before hiring technicians. Some of the principal certifying agencies include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are some states that do call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, like Nevada and California. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a superior education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Training
To begin with, let's resolve one potential misconception. You can't get all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant component of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical part of the training may be accessed online, it can be a more practical option for many Hueytown AL students. As an added benefit, some online classes are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some expenditures, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy program you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a premium education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online may be the ideal choice for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomy Certificate or Degree Programs
Now that you have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already decided on the kind of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is significant if you will be commuting from Hueytown AL in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online program. Each of these decisions are a critical part of the process for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Following are some questions that you need to ask about all of the colleges you are considering before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Alabama? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training performed prior to practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you select 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 in addition to a guarantee of a premium education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Hueytown AL job market.
What is the Program's Ranking? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's imperative to check out the reputations of any schools you are looking at. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can even talk to a few Hueytown AL hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any recommendations. As a final thought, you can contact the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Ample Training Provided? First, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn 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 furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums might indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Find out from the colleges you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional healthcare facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Hueytown AL medical community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Finding your first phlebotomist job will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it's an indication that the school has both a good reputation together with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Hueytown AL medical community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's crucial to make sure that the final school you choose provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is particularly important if you opt to still work while attending college. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Hueytown AL, make sure they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is in case you have to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Choose the Best Hueytown Phlebotomist Training
Making certain that you pick the right phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding medical care field. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be found in a wide range of academic institutes, such as community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive assortment of programs in medical care and health sciences. Program options can differ a bit from state to state as every state has its own criteria when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must carefully screen and compare each program before making your final selection. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the best phlebotomy program for you. And with the appropriate education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Hueytown Alabama.