Phlebotomist Training Schools
How to Enroll in the Right One Near Glendale Arizona
Choosing the ideal phlebotomist training near Glendale AZ is an important initial step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. There are a number of training options available to you and it may seem like an intimidating undertaking to research and analyze each one. However it's important that you do your due diligence to make sure that you receive a superior education. In reality, most prospective students start the process by considering 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional option you might look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We'll discuss a bit more about online schools later in this article. What's important to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Researching if the program is accredited or if the school has a job assistance program should also be included in your due diligence process. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you pick the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our conversation about online schools.
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Phlebotomy Technician Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal task, there is actually much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the tools being used are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork has to be accurately filled out in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab screening 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. Many phlebotomists in fact work in Glendale AZ labs and are responsible for making sure that samples are tested properly using the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't enough duties, they might be called upon to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Phlebotomy Education, Licensing and Certification
There are basically 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to complete and furnishes a general education along with 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 to become a phlebotomy tech. Available at community and junior colleges, they usually require two years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program furnish a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will probably want to be certified. Although not mandated in the majority of states, many Glendale AZ employers look for certification before hiring technicians. Some of the principal certifying organizations include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are some states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, including Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's important that you enroll in a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a superior education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Schools
To start with, let's resolve one potential misconception. You can't receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant part of the course of study will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical component of the training may be attended online, it might be a more convenient option for many Glendale AZ students. As an additional benefit, some online colleges are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist college you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a premium education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online may be the right option for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Since you now have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already picked the type of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is relevant if you will be commuting from Glendale AZ in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist school. Each of these decisions are an important part of the process for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about each of the programs you are looking at before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed before working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you enroll in should be accredited by a recognized regional or national accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from an assurance of a quality education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining 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 potential employers in the Glendale AZ job market.
What is the School'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 along with accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of any colleges you are considering. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their students as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also check with some Glendale AZ clinics or hospitals that you may 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 ask if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in full 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 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 (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything below these minimums may indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Ask the programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional health care facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on practical training frequently not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Glendale AZ healthcare community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Finding your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Glendale AZ health care community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it's crucial to confirm that the ultimate school you choose offers classes at times that are compatible with your hectic lifestyle. This is especially important if you choose to continue working while attending college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Glendale AZ, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, 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 sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is should you need to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Enroll in the Best Glendale Phlebotomist Training Program
Making sure that you select the ideal phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be offered in a variety of academic institutes, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive range of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Program options may vary 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 carefully research and compare each program before making your final selection. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the right phlebotomy college for you. And with the proper education, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Glendale Arizona.