How to Choose the Right One Near Troy Alabama
Selecting the ideal phlebotomist training near Troy AL is an important initial step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. There are a number of training programs available to you and it might seem like a daunting undertaking to investigate and analyze each one. Notwithstanding, to guarantee that you will get a quality education you must perform a detailed audit prior to making your decision. In reality, most potential students begin their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. Another option you may consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We'll talk a bit more about online schools later in this article. So when evaluating phlebotomy training courses, cost and location must not be the sole criteria you are looking at. Finding out if the program is accredited or if the school has a job placement program should also be included in your evaluation process. Toward that end, we will supply 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 education options, licensing and certification, and online schools.
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Phlebotomy Technician Training, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially 2 kinds of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to complete and provides 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, although not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they normally require 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a four year program offer a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, most Troy AL employers require certification prior to hiring technicians. Some 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 Nevada and California. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a superior education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomist Online Schools
To start with, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't get all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial part of the course of study will be practical training and it will be carried out 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-practical part of the training may be attended online, it can be a more convenient option for many Troy AL students. As an added benefit, some online programs are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some expenses, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized as well. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy school you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can receive a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your certificate or degree online may be the best option for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Since you now have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already selected the kind of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is important if you will be commuting from Troy AL in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy college. Each of these decisions are an important part of the process for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are considering prior to making your final 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 a few others require licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's extremely 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 be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you choose should be accredited by a highly regarded regional or national accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to an assurance of a premium education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification exam offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are often not available for non-accredited schools. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more desirable to prospective employers in the Troy AL job market.
What is the School's Reputation? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of any colleges you are reviewing. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can research online school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can even contact several Troy AL hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Adequate Training Included? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums might signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the schools you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional health care facilities. They are the ideal means to receive hands-on practical training often not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Troy AL healthcare community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Available? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college 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 as well as a large network of professional contacts within the Troy AL healthcare community.
Are Class Times Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it's important to verify that the final program you pick offers classes at times that are compatible with your active schedule. This is especially true if you choose to continue working while going to school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Troy AL, check that they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option also. 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 ask what the make-up policy is should you have to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Enroll in the Right Troy Phlebotomy Training Program
Making certain that you select the most suitable phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this fulfilling health care career position. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be found in a number of academic institutions, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive array of programs in medical care and health sciences. Course options can differ somewhat across the country as every state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must thoroughly evaluate and compare each college prior to making your final choice. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the right phlebotomy program for you. And with the proper training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Troy Alabama.