Phlebotomist Training Classes
How to Choose the Best One Near Scottsboro Alabama
A critical first step you must take to enter the fulfilling medical vocation of phlebotomy is to choose the best phlebotomy training near Scottsboro AL. There are a number of training programs that are offered in your area and it may seem like a daunting undertaking to research and analyze each one. Nevertheless it's vital that you perform your due diligence to make certain that you get a quality education. More often than not the two requirements that initially are considered by prospective students are where the school is located and how much the tuition is. Whether you will commute to classes or participate online is another consideration as well. We'll discuss a bit more about online schools later in this article. So when evaluating phlebotomy 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 assistance program should also be part of your evaluation process. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you select the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our conversation about online classes.
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Phlebotomy Technician Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their primary duty, there is actually much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must confirm that the tools being employed are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample needs to be correctly labeled with the patient's information. Next, paperwork must be accurately filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Many phlebotomists in fact work in Scottsboro AL laboratories and are in charge of making sure that samples are analyzed properly under the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they may be required to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Licensing and Certification
There are primarily two types of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to complete and provides a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at community and junior colleges, they usually require two years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less accessible and as a four year program provide a more extensive background in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. While not required in the majority of states, a number of Scottsboro AL employers require certification prior to employing 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 a few states that do require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, such as Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a quality education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Schools
First, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant component of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical component of the training may be accessed online, it may be a more convenient alternative for many Scottsboro AL students. As an additional benefit, many online schools are more affordable than their traditional counterparts. And some costs, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened also. Just confirm that the online phlebotomist college you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the best choice for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Since you now have a general idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already chosen the kind of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is important if you will be commuting from Scottsboro AL in addition to the tuition expense. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist program. Each of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are looking at before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you select should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited school aside from a guarantee of a premium education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to future employers in the Scottsboro AL job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of any colleges you are considering. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even contact a few Scottsboro AL clinics or hospitals that you might be interested in working for and see if they can provide any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? First, check with 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. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are considering should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums might indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with area healthcare facilities. They are the ideal means to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Scottsboro AL healthcare community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the program has both a good reputation together with a large network of professional contacts within the Scottsboro AL health care community.
Are Class Times Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it's important to confirm that the final program you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your busy lifestyle. This is especially important if you opt to still work while going to college. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Scottsboro AL, check that they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option as well. And if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is should you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Pick the Right Scottsboro Phlebotomy Training
Making certain that you enroll in the most suitable phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this fulfilling medical care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a premium college. Phlebotomist training programs are offered in a wide range of educational institutions, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide array of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Course options can vary somewhat from state to state as each state has its own criteria when it concerns phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to thoroughly screen and compare each program before making your ultimate selection. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can select the right phlebotomy program for you. And with the proper training, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Scottsboro Alabama.