How to Enroll in the Right One Near Prescott Valley Arizona
Selecting the right phlebotomist training near Prescott Valley AZ is an essential first step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. There are numerous training options that are offered in your area and it may seem like an intimidating undertaking to investigate and analyze each one. However it's important that you complete your due diligence to ensure that you get a quality education. In reality, a large number of students begin their search by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another factor you might look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. Online schools will be discussed in more detail a bit later. So when evaluating phlebotomy training courses, cost and location shouldn’t be the only criteria you are looking at. Finding out if the program is accredited or if the school has a job placement program should also be part of your evaluation process. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you pick the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let's cover education options, licensing and certification, and online classes.
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Phlebotomy Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to finish and furnishes a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it's not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will include training to become a phlebotomy tech. Offered at community and junior colleges, they usually require two years to finish. Bachelor's Degrees are less available and as a four year program furnish a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. Although not mandated 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 several states that do call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, like Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it's imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomy Online Certificates and Degrees
To begin with, let's dispel one potential mistaken belief. You can't obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A good portion of the course of study 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 prior to graduation. However since the non-practical part of the training can be attended online, it may be a more convenient option for many Prescott Valley AZ students. As an added benefit, some online schools are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenditures, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered also. Just verify that the online phlebotomy school you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can receive a superior education with this means of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online might be the ideal choice for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Training Programs
Now that you have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it's time to start your due diligence process. You might have already selected the kind of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the school is relevant if you will be commuting from Prescott Valley AZ as well as the cost of tuition. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online program. Each of these decisions are an important component of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are a few questions that you need to ask about all of the schools you are reviewing before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Arizona? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it's very important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you pick 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 several benefits to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a superior education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are frequently not available for non-accredited colleges. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Prescott Valley AZ job market.
What is the Program's Ranking? In a number of states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it's important to check out the reputations of any schools you are reviewing. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also talk to some Prescott Valley AZ clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and see 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 submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? First, check with the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums may signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask the schools you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with local health care facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Prescott Valley AZ medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Finding 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 college has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it's an indication that the college has both an excellent reputation as well as a large network of professional contacts within the Prescott Valley AZ health care community.
Are Classes Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it's important to make sure that the final college you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is particularly true if you choose to still work while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Prescott Valley AZ, make sure they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option as well. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is should you need to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Pick the Best Prescott Valley Phlebotomist Training Program
Making certain that you select the most suitable phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care field. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomy training programs can be offered in a number of educational institutions, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide assortment of programs in medical care and health sciences. Program offerings may vary somewhat across the country as each state has its own requirements when it comes to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to diligently screen and compare each school prior to making your ultimate decision. By addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the right phlebotomy program for you. And with the proper training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Prescott Valley Arizona.