How to Choose the Right One Near Prescott Valley Arizona
An important first step you must take to enter the fulfilling healthcare profession of phlebotomy is to select the best phlebotomy school near Prescott Valley AZ. There are many training options available to you and it might seem like an intimidating task to research and compare each one. Notwithstanding, to ensure that you receive a first-rate education you must perform a detailed audit prior to making your decision. Quite often the two requirements that first come to mind for student applicants are the location of the school and the cost of tuition. Whether you will commute to classes or attend them online is an option you need to consider as well. We'll discuss a bit more about online classes later in this article. What's important to remember is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Researching if the program is accredited or if the school has a job assistance program must also be part of 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 reviewing to help you choose the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our discussion about online training.
It Takes Just a Few Minutes to Start Your Phlebotomy Career Below!
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The easiest answer is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are numerous and varied, including Prescott Valley AZ medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood centers. They may be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting samples from a specific type of patient. For example, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be drawing blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers solely. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide range of patients and would work with new patients every day.
Phlebotomist Education, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially two kinds of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to finish and provides a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomy tech. Available at junior and community colleges, they typically take 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 finished your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. Although not required in most states, most Prescott Valley AZ employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. A few of the primary 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 prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it's essential that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a premium education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomist Online Schools
To start with, let's dispel one potential mistaken belief. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial part of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be performed 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. But since the non-clinical component of the training may be attended online, it might be a more convenient alternative for some Prescott Valley AZ students. As an additional benefit, some online classes are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some costs, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomy school you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a premium education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online may be the ideal choice for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Certificate or Degree Programs
Now that you have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it's time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the type 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 Prescott Valley AZ in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist college. All of these decisions are an important part of the process for selecting a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about each of the colleges you are looking at before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you choose should be accredited by a respected regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited school aside from an assurance of a quality education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification exam offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are often not available for non-accredited programs. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Prescott Valley AZ job market.
What is the College's Reputation? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it's essential to check out the reputations of all schools you are looking at. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job placement program. You can research online school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also talk to a few Prescott Valley AZ hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can contact the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are considering should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything below these minimums might indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask the colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with area health care facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on clinical training frequently not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Prescott Valley AZ health care community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Landing your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the programs you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it's an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation together with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Prescott Valley AZ medical community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it's critical to verify that the final college you select offers classes at times that will accommodate your active schedule. This is especially true if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Prescott Valley AZ, make sure they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is in case you need to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Enroll in the Right Prescott Valley Phlebotomist Training Program
Making sure that you enroll in the ideal phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare field. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomist training programs are offered in a wide range of educational institutions, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Course options may vary slightly from state to state as each state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you need to diligently evaluate and compare each school before making your final choice. By asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the right phlebotomist program for you. And with the appropriate training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Prescott Valley Arizona.