How to Find the Best One Near College Alaska
Selecting the right phlebotomist school near College AK is an important initial step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. There are numerous training options available to you and it might seem like an intimidating task to investigate and compare each one. However, to ensure that you will get a quality education you must perform a detailed audit prior to making your selection. More often than not the two qualifications that first are considered by student applicants are the location of the school and the cost of tuition. Whether you will commute to classes or attend them online is another consideration as well. We'll talk more about online schools later in this article. What's important to remember is that there is a lot 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 part of your due diligence 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 ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's address education options, licensing and certification, and online schools.
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Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to finish and furnishes a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomist. Available at junior and community colleges, they typically take 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program provide a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. Although not required in most states, many College AK employers look for 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 several states that do require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, including California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's essential that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a premium education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomy Online Training
To begin with, let's resolve one likely mistaken belief. You can't get all of your phlebotomist training online. A good portion of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-practical component of the training can be attended online, it might be a more practical option for many College AK students. As an additional benefit, some online colleges are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced also. Just verify that the online phlebotomist school you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a premium education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online may be the right option for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Now that you have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already picked the kind of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school is relevant if you will be commuting from College AK in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy program. Each of these decisions are an important part of the process for selecting a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about all of the colleges you are considering prior to making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed prior to working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's very important to select a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you pick should be accredited by a respected 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 program in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited schools. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more desirable to prospective employers in the College AK job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In a number of states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's essential to check out the reputations of any colleges you are reviewing. You can start 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 reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can even contact some College AK hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a final thought, you can contact the Alaska school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Included? First, check with the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are considering should furnish 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 provide adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the colleges you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with local medical facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on practical training often not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local College AK medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Finding your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation along with an extensive network of professional contacts within the College AK healthcare community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? And last, it's important to confirm that the final college you pick offers classes at times that are compatible with your busy lifestyle. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near College AK, make sure 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. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is in case you need to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Pick the Right College Phlebotomy Training Program
Making sure that you select the right phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are offered in a number of educational institutions, including community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive range of programs in medical care and health sciences. Course options may differ a bit from state to state as every state has its own criteria when it pertains to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to thoroughly screen and compare each program before making your ultimate decision. By addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the right phlebotomist program for you. And with the proper education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in College Alaska.