Phlebotomist Training Programs
How to Enroll in the Right One Near Bullhead City Arizona
Picking the ideal phlebotomy technician training near Bullhead City AZ is an essential first step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. There are numerous training programs available to you and it can seem like a daunting task to investigate and analyze each one. Notwithstanding, to ensure that you receive a quality education you must perform your due diligence before making your selection. Quite often the two requirements that initially are considered by prospective students are the location of the school and the cost of tuition. Whether you will commute to classes or attend them online is an option you need to consider as well. We'll talk more about online schools later in this article. What's important to keep in mind is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Finding out if the program is accredited or if the school has a job placement program must also be part of your due diligence process. Toward that end, we will supply a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you select the best one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our discussion about online training.
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Phlebotomy Tech Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their principal task, there is in fact much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the instruments being utilized are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample needs to be correctly labeled with the patient's information. Next, paperwork needs to be correctly completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab screening process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Many phlebotomists in fact work in Bullhead City AZ laboratories and are accountable for making certain that samples are analyzed properly under the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't sufficient responsibilities, they might be asked to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are basically two kinds of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to complete and offers a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomist. Available at junior and community colleges, they typically require 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. Although not mandated in the majority of states, most Bullhead City AZ employers require certification before 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 some states that do require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, including California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a premium education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomist Online Classes
First, let's resolve one potential mistaken belief. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A good part 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 completing an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-clinical portion of the training can be attended online, it can be a more convenient alternative for many Bullhead City AZ students. As an added benefit, some online colleges are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some costs, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered as well. Just make sure 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 extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a quality education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online may be the right choice for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Training Programs
Now that you have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start 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 previously mentioned, the location of the college is important if you will be commuting from Bullhead City AZ as well as the tuition expense. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy program. All of these decisions are an important component of the process 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 all of the schools you are looking at before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Arizona? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed before working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's very important to choose a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for all examinations you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you select should be accredited by a reputable national or regional accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several advantages to graduating from an accredited school aside from an assurance of a superior education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to sit for a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Bullhead City AZ job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's important to check out the reputations of all schools you are considering. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen online school rating and review services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even check with some Bullhead City AZ hospitals or clinics 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 Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Ample Training Included? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Ask the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with local healthcare facilities. They are the ideal means to obtain hands-on clinical training frequently not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Bullhead City AZ medical community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Ask if the programs you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation together with a large network of professional contacts within the Bullhead City AZ health care community.
Are Classes Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's crucial to confirm that the ultimate school you pick offers classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is particularly important if you opt to still work while going to college. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Bullhead City AZ, make certain they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option as well. And if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is should you need to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Choose the Best Bullhead City Phlebotomist Training
Making sure that you pick the ideal phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding health care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be available in a number of educational institutes, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide array of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options can differ 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 diligently screen and compare each program before making your final selection. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the right phlebotomy college for you. And with the appropriate training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Bullhead City Arizona.