Phlebotomist Training Courses
How to Enroll in the Right One Near Bullhead City Arizona
Picking the right phlebotomist school near Bullhead City AZ is a critical initial step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. There are a number of training options that are offered in your area and it may seem like a daunting task to investigate and analyze each one. However, to ensure that you receive a top-notch education you must complete your due diligence prior to making your selection. In fact, a large number of potential students start their search by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. And if you will commute to classes or participate online is another consideration as well. Online schools will be discussed in greater detail a bit later. What's important to remember is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and must be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you choose the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online classes.
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Where do Phlebotomists Work?
The easiest response is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are numerous and diverse, including Bullhead City AZ hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or young children to seniors. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting blood from a certain type of patient. For instance, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be collecting blood from senior patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers solely. On the other hand, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital environment would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients each day.
Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily two types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to complete and furnishes a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training to become a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they normally require two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are less available and as a 4 year program furnish a more expansive background in lab sciences. After you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not required in the majority of states, most Bullhead City AZ employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. Some of the key certifying organizations 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 in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, including California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it's essential that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only furnishes a quality education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Training
To start with, let's dispel one potential misconception. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A good part of the course of study will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. A large number of courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-practical portion of the training may be attended online, it could be a more practical option for some Bullhead City AZ students. As an added benefit, many online programs are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized also. Just confirm that the online phlebotomy school you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a superior education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online might be the ideal option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Now that you have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already picked the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is relevant if you will be commuting from Bullhead City AZ in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy school. All of these decisions are an important component of the process for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about each of the colleges you are considering prior to making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed before working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's very important to select a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you choose should be accredited by a highly regarded regional or national accrediting agency, for example 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 superior education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to sit for a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited schools. Last, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the Bullhead City AZ job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it's imperative to check out the reputations of all colleges you are reviewing. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can research internet school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can even contact a few Bullhead City AZ clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and find out if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Provided? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should provide at least 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 provide adequate training.
Are Internships Provided? Find out from the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with area health care facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local Bullhead City AZ health care community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it's an indication that the program has both a good reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Bullhead City AZ medical community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? And last, it's crucial to verify that the ultimate college you choose offers classes at times that are compatible with your active schedule. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while attending college. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Bullhead City AZ, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. And if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is should you have to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Enroll in the Best Bullhead City Phlebotomy Training Program
Making sure that you choose the right phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this fulfilling medical care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs are available in a number of academic institutions, including junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive array of programs in medical care and health sciences. Program offerings can vary a bit from state to state as every state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to diligently research and compare each school prior to making your ultimate choice. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the right phlebotomy school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Bullhead City Arizona.