Phlebotomist Training Schools
How to Find the Right One Near Goodyear Arizona
Perhaps the most important decision you must make to enter the rewarding medical vocation of phlebotomy is to select the right phlebotomy training near Goodyear AZ. There are a number of training programs available to you and it might seem like a daunting undertaking to investigate and analyze each one. However it's necessary that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you get a superior education. More often than not the two requirements that first are considered by student applicants are where the school is located and how much the tuition is. And if you will commute to classes or attend them online is an option you need to consider as well. We'll talk more about online schools later in this article. So when comparing phlebotomist 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 need to be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you pick the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our conversation about online classes.
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Phlebotomy Technician Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their main task, there is actually much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to check that the tools being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample needs to be correctly labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork needs to be properly completed in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory testing process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Goodyear AZ laboratories and are responsible for ensuring that samples are analyzed properly under the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't enough responsibilities, they may be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are basically 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to complete and furnishes a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest means to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they usually take 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program provide a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. While not mandated in most states, most Goodyear AZ employers require certification prior to employing technicians. Some of the key 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 prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, like Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a superior education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Certificates and Degrees
To begin with, let's dispel one likely misconception. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant part of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical component of the training can be accessed online, it might be a more practical option for some Goodyear AZ students. As an added benefit, many online colleges are more affordable than their traditional counterparts. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy program you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a premium education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online may be the best option for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Now that you have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already selected the kind of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school is relevant if you will be commuting from Goodyear AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online school. All of these decisions are an important component of the process for selecting a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about all of the colleges you are looking at prior to making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that complies with the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for all examinations you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a reputable national or regional accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a superior education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Goodyear AZ job market.
What is the Program's Ranking? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of any colleges you are looking at. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also check with some Goodyear AZ hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations. As a final thought, you can contact the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Included? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums might signify that the program is not expansive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internships Provided? Find out from the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with regional health care facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on clinical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish contacts within the local Goodyear AZ medical community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the schools you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Goodyear AZ medical community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? And last, it's critical to make sure that the final school you choose provides classes at times that are compatible with your active lifestyle. This is particularly true if you opt to continue working while attending college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Goodyear AZ, check that they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is in case you have to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Choose the Best Goodyear Phlebotomy Training
Making sure that you enroll in the most suitable phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomy training programs are offered in a wide range of educational institutions, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide range of programs in medical care and health sciences. Course offerings can vary slightly across the country as every state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you must carefully research and compare each program before making your final choice. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the right phlebotomy program for you. And with the proper education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Goodyear Arizona.