How to Pick the Best Phlebotomy Training Classes near Central Arizona
Picking the ideal phlebotomy technician school near Central AZ is an essential initial step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging task to evaluate and compare all of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s important that you perform your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a superior education. In fact, most potential students start their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you might look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. 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 checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and must be part of your selection process also. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you choose the best one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our discussion about online schools.
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Should You Choose a Career as a Plebotomist?
First of all, not many people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The short answer is a medical professional who draws blood from patients. We will provide more details later. So naturally anyone who decides to enter this profession must be able to handle needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Central AZ medical facilities, well this profession probably is not right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Techs often work with nervous people who hate needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you may 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 perfect job for you.
Phlebotomist Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their main duty, there is in fact much more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the instruments being utilized are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient’s data. Next, paperwork must be correctly completed to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab screening process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Central AZ laboratories and are accountable for ensuring that samples are analyzed correctly under the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they might be required to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomists Employed?
The easiest answer is wherever patients are treated. Their work environments are numerous and diverse, including Central AZ medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomists, based on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a particular type of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers solely. On the other hand, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide range of patients and would work with new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 kinds of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to finish and offers a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training to become a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they typically require two years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to be certified. While not required in the majority of states, many Central AZ employers look for certification prior to employing 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 a few states that do require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, including California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s important that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a premium education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Classes
First, let’s dispel one likely misconception. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A good component of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-practical portion of the training may be attended online, it may be a more practical option for many Central AZ students. As an additional benefit, a number of online schools are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some costs, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomist program you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a premium education with this means of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online may be the best option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Now that you have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already picked 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 school is significant if you will be commuting from Central AZ in addition to the tuition expense. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist program. All of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure 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 all of the programs you are considering before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Arizona? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed prior to working as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that meets the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and prepares you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you select 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 premium education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Central AZ job market.
What is the Program’s Reputation? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it’s imperative to check the reputations of all colleges you are looking at. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen online school rating and review services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even contact some Central AZ clinics or hospitals that you might be interested in working for and see if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Provided? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be working 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 practical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to furnish sufficient training.
Are Internships Provided? Ask the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with local medical facilities. They are the optimal means to get hands-on practical training typically not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish contacts within the local Central AZ medical community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Getting your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a high rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the Central AZ healthcare community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? And last, it’s critical to verify that the final college you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your active schedule. This is particularly important if you decide to still work while going to college. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Central AZ, make sure they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option also. 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 procedure is in case you have to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
How to Enroll in Drawing Blood Programs Central Arizona
Making certain that you choose the right phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this gratifying healthcare career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a quality program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are found in a variety of educational institutes, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide assortment of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program options can vary slightly from state to state as every state has its own criteria when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must thoroughly screen and compare each school before making your ultimate choice. You originally came to this website due to an interest in How to Enroll in Drawing Blood Programs and to get more information regarding Online Phlebotomy Tech Colleges Near Me. However, by asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy college for you. And with the proper education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Central AZ.
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