Phlebotomist Training Programs
How to Choose the Best One Near Gilbert Arizona
Choosing the right phlebotomy training near Gilbert AZ is an important first step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult undertaking to assess and compare all of the training options that are available to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you complete your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a superior education. In reality, many potential students begin their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you may look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We'll review more about online schools later in this article. So when comparing phlebotomy training courses, location and cost must not be the only parameters you are looking at. Finding out if the program is accredited or if the school has a job placement program should also be included in your due diligence process. Toward that end, we will supply a list of questions that you need to 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 address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online training.
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Should You Choose a Career as a Plebotomist?
Right out of the gate, not many people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The short definition is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. So of course anyone who decides to enter this profession must be OK around needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Gilbert AZ medical environments, well this job may not be right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians tend to work with anxious people who don’t like needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because many medical facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be required to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the needles and blood, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are compassionate and very patient, this may be the right job for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially 2 kinds of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to finish and furnishes a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they typically require two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are less accessible and as a four year program offer a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, a number of Gilbert AZ employers require certification prior to employing technicians. A few of the main certifying agencies include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are a few states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, such as California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's essential that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Classes
To begin with, let's dispel one likely misconception. You can't get all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant part of the program of studies will be clinical 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 prior to graduation. But since the non-practical component of the training can be attended online, it can be a more practical option for some Gilbert AZ students. As an additional benefit, some online classes are more affordable than their traditional counterparts. And some expenses, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy school 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 receive a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online might be the best choice for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges
Now that you have a basic understanding 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 wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is important if you will be commuting from Gilbert AZ as well as the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist program. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you should ask about all of the colleges you are looking at before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed before working as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's very important to select a phlebotomist program that fulfills 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 College Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you pick should be accredited by a recognized regional or national accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited program in addition to an assurance of a quality education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to future employers in the Gilbert AZ job market.
What is the School's Ranking? In many 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 any schools you are looking at. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can even check with some Gilbert AZ clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and find out if they can offer any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? To begin with, check with 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. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything below these minimums may signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Find out from the schools you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with local healthcare facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on clinical training often not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Gilbert AZ health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Available? Getting your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a higher rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Gilbert AZ healthcare community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it's important to make sure that the final school you pick provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while going to college. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Gilbert AZ, check that 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 attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is in case you have to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Enroll in the Best Gilbert Phlebotomist Training
Making sure that you choose the ideal phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare career position. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a quality school. Phlebotomist training programs can be found in a variety of educational institutions, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive range of programs in medical care and health sciences. Training program offerings can vary a bit across the country as every state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to diligently evaluate and compare each program before making your final selection. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the best phlebotomist program for you. And with the proper education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Gilbert Arizona.