How to Pick the Right One Near Paradise Valley Arizona
A critical first step one must take to enter the rewarding medical profession of phlebotomy is to choose the right phlebotomy school near Paradise Valley AZ. It might seem like a difficult task to analyze and compare all of the school alternatives that are accessible to you. However it's important that you do your due diligence to make sure that you obtain a quality education. In fact, most prospective students begin the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Whether you will drive to classes or attend them online is an option you need to consider as well. Online courses will be discussed in greater detail a bit later. What's important to remember is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and need to be part of your decision process as well. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you select the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let's address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our discussion about online training.
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Should You Train to Be a Plebotomist?
First of all, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The basic definition is a health care professional who draws blood from patients. So of course anyone who decides to enter this profession must be comfortable with needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Paradise Valley AZ medical environments, well this job may not be the best choice for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians often work with anxious people who don’t like needles or having their blood taken. And because many medical facilities are open around the clock, you may be expected 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 patient and compassionate, this could be the right profession for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially two kinds of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes less than a year to complete and furnishes a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they typically require 2 years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a four year program provide a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. While not mandated in most states, most Paradise Valley AZ employers look for certification before hiring 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 call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, such as Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a premium education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Colleges
To start with, let's dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can't receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A good component of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical portion of the training may be attended online, it may be a more practical alternative for some Paradise Valley AZ students. As an additional benefit, a number of online schools are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some expenses, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened as well. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist program you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a quality education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online might be the right choice for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Since you now have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already selected the kind of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is important if you will be commuting from Paradise Valley AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy college. Each of these decisions are an important component of the process for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you should ask about all of the colleges you are reviewing before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it's extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and readies you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you select should be accredited by a highly regarded regional or national accrediting organization, 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 quality education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited programs. Finally, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Paradise Valley AZ job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of all schools you are considering. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even talk to a few Paradise Valley AZ hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and see if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Enough 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 phlebotomy program that you are considering should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to furnish sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with area healthcare facilities. They are the optimal way to obtain hands-on practical training typically not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Paradise Valley AZ health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Landing your first phlebotomist job will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Find out if the programs you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a higher rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the program has both a good reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Paradise Valley AZ health care community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? And last, it's critical to make sure that the final college you select offers classes at times that are compatible with your busy schedule. This is particularly true if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Paradise Valley AZ, make certain they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option as well. 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 find out what the make-up policy is should you have to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Pick the Best Paradise Valley Phlebotomist Training Program
Making certain that you select the right phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding health care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomy training programs can be available in a number of educational institutions, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive array of programs in medical care and health sciences. Training program offerings may vary a bit across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must carefully screen and compare each program prior to making your ultimate decision. By addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomy college for you. And with the proper education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Paradise Valley Arizona.