How to Pick the Right One Near Payson Arizona
A critical first step one must take to enter the rewarding healthcare profession of phlebotomy is to choose the best phlebotomy school near Payson AZ. It might seem like a challenging undertaking to investigate and compare each of the training alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it's necessary that you do your due diligence to make certain that you receive a superior education. In reality, many potential students start their search by considering 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Whether you will commute to classes or participate online is another consideration as well. We'll talk a bit more about online schools later in this article. So when comparing phlebotomist training programs, cost and location must not be the only criteria you are looking at. Researching if the program is accredited or if the school has a job assistance program should also be included in your due diligence process. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you pick 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 classes.
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Phlebotomist Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal responsibility, there is actually much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must verify that the instruments being utilized are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample must be correctly labeled with the patient's data. Next, paperwork needs to be correctly filled out in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Payson AZ laboratories and are in charge of making certain that samples are analyzed properly under the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren't enough duties, they can be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to complete and furnishes a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Available at community and junior colleges, they usually require two years to complete. Bachelor's Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program furnish a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. Although not required in the majority of states, many Payson AZ employers look for certification before 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 call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, including California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it's important that you enroll in a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a premium education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomist Online Certificates and Degrees
To begin with, let's dispel one potential misconception. You can't get all of your phlebotomist training online. A good portion of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. A large number of courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-clinical component of the training may be attended online, it can be a more convenient alternative for some Payson AZ students. As an additional benefit, many online classes are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some costs, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be minimized as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy program you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a premium education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online might be the ideal choice for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Since you now have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already picked 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 significant if you will be commuting from Payson AZ as well as the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online school. Each of these decisions are an important component of the process for selecting a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are a few questions that you should ask about all of the colleges you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Arizona? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed prior to working as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's extremely important to select a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and prepares you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you choose should be accredited by a recognized regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits 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 take a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Payson AZ job market.
What is the Program's Reputation? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it's imperative to investigate the reputations of any colleges you are considering. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also talk to several Payson AZ clinics or hospitals that you might be interested in working for and see if they can provide any insights. As a closing 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 Enough 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 clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums might signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with area medical facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on clinical training frequently not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local Payson AZ health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Landing your first phlebotomy job will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the school has both a good reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Payson AZ medical community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's critical to confirm that the final school you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is especially important if you choose to still work while attending college. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Payson AZ, check that they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify 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 fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is should you need to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Pick the Right Payson Phlebotomist Training
Making certain that you select the ideal phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a premium college. Phlebotomist training programs can be offered in a variety of academic institutes, including community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program options can differ a bit from state to state as each state has its own prerequisites when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to thoroughly research and compare each program before making your ultimate choice. By addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy program for you. And with the appropriate training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Payson Arizona.