How to Choose the Right One Near Pell City Alabama
Perhaps the most serious decision you must make to enter the gratifying medical vocation of phlebotomy is to choose the best phlebotomy training near Pell City AL. It might seem like a difficult task to evaluate and compare all of the training options that are available to you. However, to guarantee that you receive a quality education you must perform your due diligence prior to making your selection. More often than not the two requirements that first are considered by prospective students are where the school is located and how much the tuition is. Whether you will drive to classes or attend them online is an option you need to consider as well. We'll talk more about online classes later in this article. What you need to keep in mind 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 important considerations and should be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you pick the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let's cover education options, licensing and certification, and online classes.
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Phlebotomy Technician Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two kinds of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to complete and furnishes a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they normally take 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less available and as a four year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not required in most states, most Pell City AL employers look for certification prior to hiring 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 a few states that do call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's essential that you choose a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a quality education, but also readies 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 dispel one possible misconception. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A good part of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be conducted either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. A large number of courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-clinical part of the training may be attended online, it can be a more convenient alternative for some Pell City AL students. As an additional benefit, a number of online colleges are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy school you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a premium education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online may be the right option for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Training Programs
Since you now have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start your due diligence process. You may have already decided on the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is relevant if you will be commuting from Pell City AL in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online program. Each of these decisions are an important component of the process for selecting a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you need to ask about all of the colleges you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomist. 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 fulfills the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and preps you for all examinations you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you pick should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a superior education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification exam offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more desirable to future employers in the Pell City AL job market.
What is the School's Ranking? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy 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 considering. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their students as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also check with some Pell City AL 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 contact the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Included? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask the colleges you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional health care facilities. They are the ideal means to receive hands-on clinical training often not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Pell City AL healthcare community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Finding your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation together with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Pell City AL health care community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it's important to make sure that the ultimate school you select offers classes at times that will accommodate your active schedule. This is especially true if you decide to still work while attending college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Pell City 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 as well. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is should you have to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Pick the Best Pell City Phlebotomist Training
Making certain that you pick the right phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this fulfilling medical care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomist training programs can be found in a variety of educational institutions, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Course offerings may vary slightly from state to state as each state has its own prerequisites when it pertains to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must thoroughly research and compare each school prior to making your final decision. By addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomy program for you. And with the appropriate education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Pell City Alabama.