How to Choose the Best One Near Kingman Arizona
Perhaps the most serious decision you must make to enter the gratifying healthcare vocation of phlebotomy is to choose the right phlebotomy school near Kingman AZ. There are numerous training options available to you and it might seem like a daunting undertaking to research and analyze each one. Nevertheless it's necessary that you perform your due diligence to make certain that you get a superior education. Quite often the two requirements that first come to mind for prospective students are where the school is located and how much the tuition is. And if you will commute to classes or participate online is another consideration as well. Online classes will be discussed in greater detail a bit later. What's important to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you should 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 afterwards resume our conversation about online schools.
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Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The quickest response is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are many and diverse, such as Kingman AZ medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be charged to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomy techs, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a specific type of patient. For example, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would only be drawing blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital environment would be collecting blood from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially two types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to finish and provides a basic education together 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 specifically a phlebotomy degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Available at community and junior colleges, they usually take 2 years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less available and as a four year program offer a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, many Kingman AZ employers require certification before employing technicians. A few 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 require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, such as California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's essential that you choose a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a superior education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Certificates and Degrees
First, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A good portion of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical part of the training may be attended online, it can be a more convenient alternative for many Kingman AZ students. As an additional benefit, many online colleges are less expensive than their traditional counterparts. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy school you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a quality education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online may be the best choice for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomy Training Programs
Now that you have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to start your due diligence process. You may have already selected the kind of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the college is relevant if you will be commuting from Kingman AZ in addition to the tuition expense. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online school. Each of these decisions are a critical part of the process for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Following are some questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed before working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomist program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you select should be accredited by a reputable national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a premium education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Kingman AZ job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist 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 asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can research internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also check with several Kingman AZ hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any insights. 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 Plenty of Training Included? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are reviewing should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Ask the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with regional medical facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on clinical training frequently not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Kingman AZ health care community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Available? Finding your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the programs you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a higher rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the college has both an excellent reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Kingman AZ health care community.
Are Classes Conveniently Scheduled? Finally, it's critical to confirm that the ultimate program you pick provides classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is especially important if you decide to still work while attending school. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Kingman 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. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is should you need to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Pick the Right Kingman Phlebotomist Training Program
Making certain that you select the right phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care field. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a premium program. Phlebotomy training programs can be offered in a wide range of educational institutions, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive array of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program offerings may differ a bit from state to state as every state has its own criteria when it pertains to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must carefully screen and compare each school prior to making your final choice. By addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomist college for you. And with the appropriate training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Kingman Arizona.