How to Find the Right One Near Flowing Wells Arizona
Picking the ideal phlebotomy technician school near Flowing Wells AZ is an important 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 an intimidating task to research and analyze each one. However it's necessary that you perform your due diligence to ensure that you receive a superior education. More often than not the two requirements that initially come to mind for prospective students are where the school is located and how much the tuition is. And if you will drive to classes or participate online is an option you need to consider as well. Online schools will be discussed in greater detail a bit later. What you need to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Finding out if the program is accredited or if the school has a job assistance program should also be part of your evaluation process. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you choose the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our conversation about online schools.
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Phlebotomy Technician Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their principal function, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to verify that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample must be properly labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork must be correctly filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab testing procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Flowing Wells AZ laboratories and are in charge of making sure that samples are analyzed properly using the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't enough responsibilities, they might be called upon to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Phlebotomist Training, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially two types of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to finish and furnishes a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they normally require two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program furnish a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. While not required in most states, a number of Flowing Wells AZ employers require certification prior to hiring technicians. A few of the primary 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 prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it's important that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a superior education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Colleges
To begin with, let's resolve one possible mistaken belief. You can't get all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant portion of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Many courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical portion of the training can be attended online, it might be a more practical alternative for some Flowing Wells AZ students. As an additional benefit, many online classes are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenses, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist program you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive 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 earning your certificate or degree online may be the best option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges
Since you now have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to start your due diligence process. You may have already picked the type of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is important if you will be commuting from Flowing Wells AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online college. All of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you should ask about each of the programs you are reviewing prior to making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed before working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you choose should be accredited by a reputable regional or national accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited school aside from an assurance of a quality education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification exam offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools. Last, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Flowing Wells AZ job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it's imperative to check out the reputations of all colleges you are considering. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also talk to several Flowing Wells AZ hospitals or clinics that you might have an interest in working for and find out if they can offer any recommendations. As a final thought, you can contact the Arizona school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Included? First, contact 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. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority 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 Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on clinical training frequently not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local Flowing Wells AZ healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Getting your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the school has both a good reputation together with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Flowing Wells AZ medical community.
Are Class Times Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it's critical to confirm that the ultimate college you pick provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy lifestyle. This is particularly important if you opt to continue working while going to college. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Flowing Wells AZ, make sure they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. Even if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is should you have to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Choose the Right Flowing Wells Phlebotomist Training
Making certain that you enroll in the right phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding medical care field. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are available in a variety of academic institutions, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive range of programs in medical care and health sciences. Training program options may differ somewhat across the country as each state has its own criteria when it pertains to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must thoroughly screen and compare each program prior to making your final selection. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the right phlebotomy college for you. And with the appropriate education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Flowing Wells Arizona.