Phlebotomist Training Programs
How to Choose the Right One Near Nogales Arizona
Picking the right phlebotomy training near Nogales AZ is a critical initial step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. There are a number of training programs available to you and it can seem like a daunting task to investigate and compare each one. Nevertheless it's vital that you do your due diligence to make certain that you obtain a superior education. More often than not the two requirements that first are considered by student applicants are the location of the school and the cost of tuition. Whether you will drive to classes or attend them online is another consideration as well. Online classes will be discussed in greater detail a bit later. So when evaluating phlebotomist training courses, cost and location shouldn’t be the sole parameters you are looking at. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and must be part of your decision process as well. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you select the best one for you. But prior to doing that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online training.
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Should You Choose a Career as a Phlebotomy Tech?
Right out of the gate, not many people probably know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The short definition is a health care professional who draws blood from patients. So naturally anyone who decides to enter this profession must be OK around blood and needles. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Nogales AZ medical environments, well this job probably is not right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Techs often work with anxious people who hate needles or having a blood sample taken. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you may be required to work weekends, nights and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the needles and blood, and if you enjoy helping people and are compassionate and very patient, this could be the right profession for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Licensing and Certification
There are basically two kinds of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to complete and provides a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they usually require two years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will probably want to become certified. Although not required in the majority of states, many Nogales AZ employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. Some of the primary certifying agencies 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 in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, like California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it's important that you pick a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a premium education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomist Online Certificates and Degrees
To start with, let's dispel one possible misconception. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant portion of the course of study will be clinical 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 may be accessed online, it may be a more practical alternative for many Nogales AZ students. As an additional benefit, a number of online schools are less expensive than their traditional counterparts. And some expenses, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be minimized as well. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy college you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a quality education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online might be the best choice for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Since you now have a general idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to start your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is significant if you will be commuting from Nogales AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist program. Each of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for selecting a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you should ask about all of the programs you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Arizona? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it's extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that satisfies 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 school and program you select should be accredited by a reputable 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 a guarantee of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification exam offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are often not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, graduating from an accredited school can make you more desirable to prospective employers in the Nogales AZ job market.
What is the Program's Ranking? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of any schools you are reviewing. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can screen online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even contact some Nogales AZ hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and find out if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing 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 Sufficient 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 classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums might indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with local medical facilities. They are the ideal means to get hands-on practical training frequently not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Nogales AZ health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Finding your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the college has both a good reputation together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Nogales AZ health care community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it's important to verify that the final college you pick provides classes at times that are compatible with your hectic schedule. This is particularly true if you choose to still work while attending college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Nogales AZ, make sure they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. And if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is in case you need to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Pick the Best Nogales Phlebotomy Training
Making sure that you choose the most suitable phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying health care field. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be offered in a number 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. Course offerings can differ a bit from state to state as each state has its own requirements when it pertains to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must diligently research and compare each program before making your final decision. By addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the best phlebotomy program for you. And with the appropriate education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Nogales Arizona.