How to Select the Right Phlebotomy Technician Training Program near West Helena Arkansas
Choosing the ideal phlebotomy technician training near West Helena AR is an important first step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting task to investigate and compare all of the training options that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it’s vital that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you receive a superior education. In fact, a large number of prospective students start their search by considering 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional factor you may consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We’ll talk 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 cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and need to be part of your decision process too. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you pick the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online classes.
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Should You Train to Be a Phlebotomy Tech?
First of all, not many people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The short definition is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. We will provide more details later. So naturally anyone who chooses this profession must be comfortable with needles and blood. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other West Helena AR medical facilities, well this profession may not be right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians tend to work with nervous people who hate needles or having their blood drawn. And because most health care facilities are open 24 hours, you will probably be expected to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the blood and needles, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are compassionate and very patient, this could be the right profession for you.
Phlebotomist Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their primary responsibility, there is in fact far more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to verify that the tools being employed are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork needs to be accurately filled out to be able 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. Some phlebotomists actually work in West Helena AR labs and are responsible for making sure that samples are analyzed properly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they may be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The most basic response is wherever they treat patients. Their work environments are many and varied, including West Helena AR hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing samples from a certain type of patient. For instance, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be drawing blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomist Education, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 types of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to finish and provides a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest means 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 on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Available at junior and community colleges, they usually require 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less accessible and as a 4 year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. After you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. Although not required in most states, a number of West Helena AR employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. Some of the key certifying agencies include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are some states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, such as Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s important that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only furnishes a quality education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomy Online Schools
To start with, let’s resolve one likely misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A good component of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-practical portion of the training can be accessed online, it may be a more practical option for some West Helena AR students. As an added benefit, some online colleges are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenses, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be minimized as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy program you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a premium education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online might be the ideal choice for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Since you now have a basic understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already chosen the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is relevant if you will be commuting from West Helena AR in addition to the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy college. All of these decisions are a critical part of the process for picking a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only considerations when making your decision. Following are several questions that you should ask about each of the colleges you are reviewing before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Arkansas? As mentioned previously, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training performed before working as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it’s very important to choose a phlebotomy program that meets the state specific requirements for Arkansas or the state where you will be working and preps you for all examinations you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school 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 benefits to graduating from an accredited school aside from a guarantee of a quality education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to future employers in the West Helena AR job market.
What is the School’s Reputation? In many 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 essential to check the reputations of any colleges you are looking at. 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 internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also contact some West Helena AR clinics or hospitals that you may have an interest in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Arkansas school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Included? First, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Find out from the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with regional medical facilities. They are the ideal means to receive hands-on clinical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local West Helena AR medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Finding your first phlebotomy job will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation together with a large network of professional contacts within the West Helena AR health care community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s important to make sure that the ultimate program you choose provides classes at times that are compatible with your busy lifestyle. This is particularly true if you decide to still work while going to school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near West Helena AR, make certain they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is should you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Weekend Phlebotomy Tech Classes West Helena Arkansas
Making sure that you select the most suitable phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare career position. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomy training programs are found in a number of academic institutes, including community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive array of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program offerings can differ slightly from state to state as every state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must diligently screen and compare each school prior to making your ultimate choice. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Weekend Phlebotomy Tech Classes and to get more information regarding Accelerated Phlebotomy Education. However, by addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the best phlebotomy college for you. And with the appropriate education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in West Helena AR.
More Arkansas Bloody Wonderful Locations
Helena–West Helena, Arkansas
Helena–West Helena is the county seat of and the largest city within Phillips County, Arkansas, United States. The current city was consolidated, effective January 1, 2006, from the two Arkansas cities of Helena and West Helena. Helena is sited on lowlands between the Mississippi River and the eastern side of Crowley's Ridge. West Helena is located on the western side of Crowley's Ridge, a geographic anomaly in the typically flat Arkansas Delta. The Helena Bridge, one of Arkansas' four Mississippi River bridges, carries U.S. Route 49 across to Mississippi. The combined population of the two cities was 15,012 at the 2000 census and at the 2010 census, the official population was 12,282.
The municipality traces its historical roots to the founding of the port town of Helena on the Mississippi River by European Americans in 1833. As the county seat, Helena was the center of a prosperous cotton plantation region in the antebellum years. Helena was occupied by the Union Army early in the American Civil War. The city was the site of the Battle of Helena fought in 1863. Confederate forces unsuccessfully tried to expel Union forces from Helena in order to help relieve pressure on the strategic river town of Vicksburg, Mississippi. Later in the year, Helena served as the launching point for the Union Army in the capture of Little Rock, the state capital.
A thriving blues community developed here in the 1940s and 1950s as rural musicians relocated for city jobs. Mechanization had reduced the need for farm workers. The city continued to grow until the closing of the Mohawk Rubber Company, a subsidiary of Yokohama Rubber Company, in the 1970s. Unemployment surged shortly after.