Phlebotomist Training Classes
How to Find the Right One Near Madison Alabama
Perhaps the most serious decision you must make to enter the rewarding healthcare profession of phlebotomy is to select the best phlebotomy school near Madison AL. There are numerous training options that are offered in your area and it might seem like an intimidating undertaking to investigate and compare each one. However it's necessary that you complete your due diligence to ensure that you get a quality education. In fact, many prospective students start their search by considering 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. Online schools will be discussed in more detail a bit later. So when comparing phlebotomy training courses, cost and location shouldn’t be the only parameters you are looking at. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and need to be part of your decision process as well. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you pick the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online schools.
It Takes Just a Few Minutes to Start Your Phlebotomy Career Below!
Phlebotomy Tech Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. While that is their main task, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to verify that the tools being utilized are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample has to be properly labeled with the patient's data. Afterward, paperwork needs to be properly filled out in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory testing procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Madison AL labs and are responsible for making sure that samples are analyzed correctly utilizing the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't enough duties, they may be asked to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially two kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes less than a year to finish and offers a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will include training to become a phlebotomy tech. Offered at community and junior colleges, they normally require two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program offer a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. While not required in the majority of states, a number of Madison AL employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. A few of the primary 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 require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, including California and Nevada. 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 furnishes a premium education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Schools
First, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't get all of your phlebotomy training online. A good part of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-clinical part of the training can be attended online, it could be a more convenient option for many Madison AL students. As an additional benefit, many online schools are more affordable than their traditional counterparts. And some expenses, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomy school you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a superior education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online might be the ideal choice for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Since you now have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate 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 school is important if you will be commuting from Madison AL as well as the tuition expense. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist college. All of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you need to ask about all of the colleges you are reviewing before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As mentioned previously, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed before working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that meets the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and prepares you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you select should be accredited by a recognized regional or national accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited program in addition to an assurance of a superior education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are often unavailable for non-accredited schools. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more desirable to prospective employers in the Madison AL job market.
What is the School's Ranking? In numerous states there is minimal 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 any 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 rating and review services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also talk to several Madison AL hospitals or clinics that you might have an interest in working for and find out if they can offer any recommendations. As a final thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Plenty of 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 length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums may signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Find out from the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional health care facilities. They are the ideal way to get hands-on clinical training frequently not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Madison AL health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Finding your first phlebotomy job will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in positions, it's an indication that the school has both a good reputation together with a large network of professional contacts within the Madison AL medical community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's crucial to make sure that the ultimate school you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you choose to continue working while going to school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Madison AL, check that they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option as well. And if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is should you have to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Enroll in the Right Madison Phlebotomy Training
Making sure that you select the right phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding health care field. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a premium program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are offered in a number of academic institutions, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Course options may differ a bit from state to state as each state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you need to thoroughly research and compare each school before making your ultimate decision. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the ideal phlebotomist school for you. And with the proper training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Madison Alabama.