How to Pick the Best One Near College Alaska
Picking the right phlebotomist training near College AK is a critical initial step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging task to assess and compare all of the training alternatives that are available to you. Notwithstanding, to guarantee that you will get a top-notch education you must complete your due diligence before making your decision. In reality, a large number of students begin their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Yet another option you might consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. Online schools will be discussed in more detail a bit later. So when assessing phlebotomist training courses, location and cost shouldn’t be the only parameters you are looking at. Researching if the program is accredited or if the school has a job placement program should also be part of your due diligence process. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you select the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our discussion about online schools.
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Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The easiest answer is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are many and diverse, including College AK medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be assigned to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomists, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a certain kind of patient. For instance, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be drawing blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital setting would be drawing blood from a wide range of patients and would work with new patients each day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to complete and offers a general education together with 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, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they typically require 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are less available and as a 4 year program furnish a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will probably want to become certified. Although not mandated in most states, a number of College AK employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. A few of the principal certifying organizations 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 call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a quality education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Classes
To start with, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A good component of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be conducted 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 can be accessed online, it can be a more convenient option for many College AK students. As an added benefit, some online programs are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some costs, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced as well. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy college you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a premium education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online may be the ideal option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges
Since you now have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start your due diligence process. You may have already chosen 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 campus is relevant if you will be commuting from College AK as well as the tuition expense. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online college. All of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for selecting a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are several questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are looking at prior to making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Alaska? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you select should be accredited by a respected regional or national 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 aside from a guarantee of a quality 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 obtaining financial aid or loans, which are typically not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to future employers in the College AK job market.
What is the College's Ranking? In a number of states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's important to check out the reputations of any schools you are reviewing. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can research internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can even talk to some College AK hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and see if they can offer any recommendations. As a final thought, you can check with the Alaska school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Enough 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. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internships Provided? Ask the schools you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with area medical facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on practical training often not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local College AK medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Available? Finding your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the College AK healthcare community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it's important to confirm that the final college you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is especially true if you opt to continue working while attending college. If you need to attend 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, verify it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is should you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Pick the Right College Phlebotomy Training
Making certain that you pick the ideal phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this fulfilling medical care career position. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be found in a wide range of academic institutions, including community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive assortment of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Program options may differ slightly across the country as every state has its own criteria when it comes to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to thoroughly evaluate and compare each college before making your final decision. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can select the ideal phlebotomist school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in College Alaska.