How to Find the Best One Near Prattville Alabama
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomy training near Prattville AL is a critical initial step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. There are many training programs that are offered in your area and it can seem like an intimidating task to investigate and compare each one. Nevertheless it's important that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you obtain a quality education. More often than not the two qualifications that first are considered by prospective students are where the school is located and how much the tuition is. Another factor you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We'll discuss more about online classes later in this article. So when comparing phlebotomist training courses, location and cost shouldn’t be the sole parameters you are looking at. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and must 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 reviewing to help you pick the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online classes.
It Takes Just a Few Minutes to Start Your Phlebotomy Career Below!
Should You Train to Be a Plebotomist?
Right out of the gate, few people probably know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The short answer is a medical professional who draws blood from patients. So of course anyone who selects this profession must be comfortable with blood and needles. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Prattville AL medical environments, well this job may not be right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Techs tend to work with anxious people who hate needles or having a blood sample taken. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be required to work weekends, nights and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the needles and blood, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are compassionate and very patient, this may be the perfect job for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomy 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 phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they normally require two years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less accessible and as a 4 year program offer a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. Although not required in the majority of states, a number of Prattville 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 several states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, like Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's essential that you pick a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a premium education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Training
First, let's dispel one likely mistaken belief. You can't get all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial portion of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical portion of the training may be attended online, it might be a more practical option for some Prattville AL students. As an additional benefit, some online colleges are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenses, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced as well. Just confirm that the online phlebotomy college you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a superior education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online may be the ideal choice for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Since you now have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school is important if you will be commuting from Prattville AL as well as the tuition expense. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online college. All of these decisions are a critical part of the process for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only considerations when arriving at your decision. Following are several questions that you need to ask about each of the schools you are considering prior to making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Alabama? As mentioned previously, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and readies you for all examinations you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you choose should be accredited by a reputable national or regional accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited program aside from an assurance of a quality education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are typically not available for non-accredited schools. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the Prattville AL job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In a number of states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's essential to check the reputations of all colleges you are considering. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also talk to a few Prattville AL hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and see if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? First, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums may signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Ask the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with area health care facilities. They are the optimal means to receive hands-on practical training often not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Prattville AL healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Available? Finding your first phlebotomy job will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Prattville AL health care community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it's important to confirm that the ultimate program you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is especially important if you decide to still work while attending college. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Prattville AL, make certain they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option also. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is should you have to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Pick the Right Prattville Phlebotomy Training
Making sure that you enroll in the right phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this gratifying health care field. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomist training programs can be found in a number of educational institutes, such as community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options can differ slightly from state to state as every state has its own criteria when it comes to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you must diligently evaluate and compare each college prior to making your final selection. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist program for you. And with the appropriate education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Prattville Alabama.