How to Pick the Right One Near Tillmans Corner Alabama
A critical first step you must take to enter the gratifying medical vocation of phlebotomy is to choose the right phlebotomy training near Tillmans Corner AL. It may seem like a daunting task to analyze and compare all of the school options that are accessible to you. However it's necessary that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you receive a quality education. In reality, most potential students start the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you may consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. Online classes will be discussed in more detail a bit later. What's important to remember is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Researching if the program is accredited or if the school has a job placement program must also be included in your evaluation process. 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 before we do that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online classes.
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Phlebotomist Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. While that is their primary duty, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to confirm that the tools being employed are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample needs to be accurately labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork needs to be properly filled out in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Tillmans Corner AL laboratories and are in charge of making certain that samples are tested properly under the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't enough responsibilities, they might be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Phlebotomy Training, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially two types of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to complete and provides a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they typically take 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program provide a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not required in the majority of states, most Tillmans Corner AL employers look for certification before hiring technicians. A few of the key 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 phlebotomy tech, like California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it's important that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a quality education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Colleges
To start with, let's resolve one potential mistaken belief. You can't receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A good portion of the program of studies will be clinical 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 in order to graduate. However since the non-clinical portion of the training may be accessed online, it may be a more convenient option for some Tillmans Corner AL students. As an added benefit, some online colleges are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomy school you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a quality education with this means of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online may be the right option for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Since you now have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already picked the kind of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is significant if you will be commuting from Tillmans Corner AL as well as the tuition expense. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online college. Each of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are several questions that you should ask about each of the programs you are looking at prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As mentioned previously, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's very important to choose a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you choose should be accredited by a highly regarded regional or national accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited school in addition to an assurance of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the Tillmans Corner AL job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's essential to check out the reputations of all colleges you are reviewing. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can screen online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also contact several Tillmans Corner AL clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Ample Training Included? First, contact the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums might signify that the program is not expansive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internships Provided? Find out from the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with regional medical facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Tillmans Corner AL health care community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the college has both an excellent reputation together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Tillmans Corner AL medical community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it's important to confirm that the final school you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your busy lifestyle. This is particularly true if you choose to still work while going to school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Tillmans Corner AL, make sure they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option as well. And if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is in case you have to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Pick the Best Tillmans Corner Phlebotomist Training Program
Making sure that you choose the right phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are several factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomy training programs are available in a wide range of educational institutes, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Course options may vary a bit 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 carefully evaluate and compare each school prior to making your ultimate choice. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the ideal phlebotomist college for you. And with the proper education, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Tillmans Corner Alabama.