Phlebotomist Training Schools
How to Choose the Best One Near Green Valley Arizona
A critical first step you must take to enter the fulfilling medical profession of phlebotomy is to select the right phlebotomy school near Green Valley AZ. There are numerous training options that are offered in your area and it might seem like an intimidating task to investigate and analyze each one. However it's vital that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you obtain a superior education. In reality, a large number of students start their search by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. And if you will commute to classes or participate online is an option you need to consider as well. Online courses will be discussed in greater detail a bit later. So when evaluating phlebotomy training courses, location and cost shouldn’t be the only criteria you are looking at. Finding out if the program is accredited or if the school has a job assistance program must also be included in your evaluation 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 choose the right one for you. But before we do that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our conversation about online schools.
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Phlebotomy Tech Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. Although that is their principal duty, there is in fact much more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to check that the instruments being employed are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient's information. Afterward, paperwork must be correctly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab screening process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Green Valley AZ labs and are in charge of making certain that samples are analyzed properly under the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren't sufficient duties, they might be required to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are basically 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to finish and provides a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training to become a phlebotomy tech. Available at junior and community colleges, they normally take 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a four year program furnish a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. While not required in the majority of states, a number of Green Valley AZ employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. Some of the key 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 phlebotomy tech, such as Nevada and California. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's essential that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a superior education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomy Online Schools
First, let's resolve one possible mistaken belief. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial portion of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be conducted 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-practical part of the training may be accessed online, it could be a more practical option for some Green Valley AZ students. As an added benefit, many online schools are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist school you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a quality 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 best choice for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Training Programs
Now that you have a basic understanding 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 want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is relevant if you will be commuting from Green Valley AZ in addition to the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online school. Each of these decisions are a critical part of the process for selecting a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Following are a few questions that you should ask about each of the schools 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 regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed before working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. 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 working and preps you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you select should be accredited by a respected national or regional accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Green Valley AZ job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In numerous states there is little 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 check the reputations of any schools you are looking at. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also talk to some Green Valley AZ clinics or hospitals that you may have an interest in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? 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 phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything below these minimums might signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internships Included? Ask the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with area healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Green Valley AZ healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Finding your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the college has both an excellent reputation along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Green Valley AZ medical community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it's important to confirm that the ultimate school you pick offers classes at times that will accommodate your hectic schedule. This is particularly true if you choose to still work while attending school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Green Valley AZ, make certain they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify 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 procedure is in case you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Pick the Right Green Valley Phlebotomist Training
Making sure that you choose the most suitable phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care field. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomy training programs are available in a number of educational institutions, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program offerings may vary slightly across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must thoroughly evaluate and compare each school prior to making your ultimate selection. By addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist school for you. And with the proper education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Green Valley Arizona.