How to Find the Best One Near Casa Grande Arizona
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomist training near Casa Grande AZ is an important first step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. There are numerous training options that are offered in your area and it might seem like a daunting task to investigate and analyze each one. Notwithstanding, to guarantee that you will get a quality education you must perform your due diligence prior to making your decision. More often than not the two qualifications that first come to mind for prospective students are where the school is located and how much the tuition is. Yet another option you may consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. Online classes will be covered in greater detail a bit later. So when evaluating phlebotomist training courses, location and cost must not be the sole parameters you are looking at. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and need to be part of your selection process as well. To assist in that effort, we will furnish 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 before we do that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online schools.
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Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The simplest response is wherever there are patients. Their work places are numerous and diverse, including Casa Grande AZ hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be charged to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing blood from a specific kind of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers solely. On the other hand, phlebotomists working in a general hospital environment would be drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Licensing and Certification
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes less than a year to complete and offers a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will include training to become a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they usually require 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program provide a more extensive background in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will probably want to be certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, a number of Casa Grande AZ employers require certification before hiring 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 call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, such as Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's important that you pick a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a premium education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Training
To begin with, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't get all of your phlebotomy training online. A good portion of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical part of the training may be attended online, it can be a more convenient alternative for many Casa Grande AZ students. As an additional benefit, some online classes are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some expenditures, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomy program you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a quality education with this means of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online may be the best choice for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
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 might have already decided on the kind of program you wish 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 Casa Grande AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online school. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the process for picking a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you should ask about all of the schools you are considering prior to making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited school aside from a guarantee of a quality education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are frequently not available for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to future employers in the Casa Grande AZ job market.
What is the Program's Ranking? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it's essential to check out the reputations of all schools you are reviewing. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can screen online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can even check with several Casa Grande AZ clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Provided? First, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with local medical facilities. They are the ideal means to receive hands-on practical training frequently not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Casa Grande AZ medical community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Getting your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the programs you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in positions, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Casa Grande AZ health care community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it's crucial to confirm that the ultimate college you select offers classes at times that will accommodate your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you opt to still work while going to college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Casa Grande AZ, make sure they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option as well. And if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is should you have to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Choose the Best Casa Grande Phlebotomist Training Program
Making sure that you choose the right phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomy training programs are offered in a variety of educational institutes, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive range of programs in medical care and health sciences. Training program offerings may vary a bit from state to state as each state has its own prerequisites when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must thoroughly research and compare each school before making your ultimate selection. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the right phlebotomy school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Casa Grande Arizona.