How to Choose the Right One Near Fortuna Foothills Arizona
Choosing the right phlebotomy training near Fortuna Foothills AZ is an important initial step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging undertaking to evaluate and compare all of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it's important that you complete your due diligence to make sure that you obtain a quality education. In reality, a large number of prospective students start their search by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Yet another option you may look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. We'll discuss more about online classes later in this article. So when comparing phlebotomy training programs, location and cost must not be the only criteria you are looking at. Other variables including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing 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 resume our conversation about online schools.
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Should You Go to School to Become a Phlebotomy Technician?
First of all, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The basic definition is a medical professional whose job is to draw blood. So of course anyone who decides to enter this profession must be comfortable with needles and blood. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Fortuna Foothills AZ medical facilities, well this profession may not be the best choice for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomists often work with nervous people who don’t like needles or having their blood taken. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be required to work weekends, nights and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the blood and needles, and if you enjoy helping people and are compassionate and very patient, this may be the perfect job for you.
Phlebotomy Training, Licensing and Certification
There are primarily two types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to complete and furnishes a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they typically take two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program offer a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. While not required in the majority of states, most Fortuna Foothills AZ employers look for certification before hiring technicians. Some of the primary certifying agencies 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 phlebotomist, including Nevada and California. 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 furnishes a premium education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomist Online Classes
First, let's dispel one potential mistaken belief. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A good component of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical part of the training may be accessed online, it can be a more convenient alternative for some Fortuna Foothills AZ students. As an additional benefit, a number of online programs are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some expenses, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced as well. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy program you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a premium education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online might be the right choice for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges
Now that you have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already selected 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 college is significant if you will be commuting from Fortuna Foothills AZ as well as the cost of tuition. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online program. Each of these decisions are an important component of the process for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Following are a few questions that you need to ask about all of the schools you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed prior to working as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you pick should be accredited by a reputable regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited program in addition to an assurance of a quality education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, 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 future employers in the Fortuna Foothills AZ job market.
What is the College's Ranking? In a number of states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it's important to check the reputations of any schools you are reviewing. 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 internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also check with some Fortuna Foothills AZ clinics or hospitals that you might be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any recommendations. As a final thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been submitted or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Provided? First, contact the state regulator where you will be working to find out 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 no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internships Included? Find out from the schools you are considering if they have an internship program in partnership with local medical facilities. They are the ideal means to receive hands-on clinical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Fortuna Foothills AZ health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the programs you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it's an indication that the college has both a good reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Fortuna Foothills AZ healthcare community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it's crucial to verify that the ultimate college you select provides classes at times that are compatible with your active schedule. This is particularly true if you choose to continue working while attending college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Fortuna Foothills AZ, make sure they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is should you need to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Choose the Right Fortuna Foothills Phlebotomy Training Program
Making certain that you select the most suitable phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding health care field. As we have discussed in this article, there are several factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality school. Phlebotomy training programs can be offered in a wide range of educational institutes, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive array of programs in medical care and health sciences. Course options can differ a bit across the country as every state has its own requirements when it comes to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to diligently screen and compare each school prior to making your ultimate selection. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the right phlebotomist school for you. And with the proper training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Fortuna Foothills Arizona.