How to Choose the Best Phlebotomy Technician Training Classes near Shafter California
Enrolling in the right phlebotomist training near Shafter CA is an important initial step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging task to evaluate and compare all of the school options that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it’s important that you do your due diligence to make certain that you obtain a quality education. In reality, many students begin their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Yet another option you might look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We’ll discuss more about online schools later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors such as accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process also. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you should 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 address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online training.
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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 medical professional whose job is to draw blood. We will provide more details later. So of course anyone who selects this profession must be able to handle blood and needles. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Shafter CA medical environments, well this profession may not be right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Techs often work around nervous people who don’t like needles or having their blood taken. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be expected to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the blood and needles, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are patient and compassionate, this could be the right job for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. Although that is their principal responsibility, there is in fact far more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must confirm that the instruments being utilized are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork must be properly filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab screening process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Shafter CA laboratories and are responsible for ensuring that samples are tested properly under the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they can be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The most basic answer is wherever they treat patients. Their work places are numerous and varied, including Shafter CA medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be assigned to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a specific kind of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be collecting blood from senior patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital environment would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with new patients each day.
Phlebotomist Education, Certification and Licensing
There are basically 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to complete and provides a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they normally require two years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a four year program furnish a more expansive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. Although not required in most states, most Shafter CA employers require certification before hiring 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 essential that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a quality education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Schools
First, let’s dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant portion of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Many courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-practical component of the training may be accessed online, it might be a more practical option for some Shafter CA students. As an added benefit, many online classes are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some costs, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered as well. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist school you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a premium education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the ideal choice for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Since you now have a general understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the kind 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 Shafter CA in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online school. All of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are looking at prior to making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to California? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed prior to working as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that complies with the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school 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 an assurance of a quality education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are often not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to future employers in the Shafter CA job market.
What is the School’s Ranking? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it’s essential to check out the reputations of all colleges you are looking at. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their students as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even contact some Shafter CA clinics or hospitals that you may have an interest in working for and find out if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the California school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums may signify that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out from the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with local medical facilities. They are the optimal way to receive hands-on clinical training frequently not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Shafter CA health care community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school 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 as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Shafter CA health care community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? And last, it’s critical to verify that the ultimate school you select offers classes at times that are compatible with your active lifestyle. This is especially important if you opt to still work while attending school. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Shafter CA, make sure they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option as well. And if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed 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.
Phlebotomy Colleges Shafter California
Making sure that you enroll in the most suitable phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this gratifying health care field. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomist training programs can be available in a variety of educational institutes, such as community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Training program offerings can vary somewhat across the country as each state has its own requirements when it pertains to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to carefully research and compare each college prior to making your ultimate selection. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Phlebotomy Colleges and to get more information regarding Drawing Blood Classes. However, by addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy college for you. And with the appropriate education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Shafter CA.
More California Bloody Wonderful Locations
Shafter is a city in Kern County, California, United States. It is located 18 miles (29 km) west-northwest of Bakersfield. The population was 16,988 at the 2010 census, up from 12,736 at the 2000 census. The city is located along State Route 43. Suburbs of Shafter include Myricks Corner, North Shafter, Smith's Corner, and Thomas Lane.
The city of Shafter began as a loading dock along the Santa Fe Railroad right-of-way. The community was named for General William Rufus Shafter who commanded US Forces in Cuba during the Spanish–American War. Property was sold beginning in 1914 and the city incorporated in 1938.
Also of historical note, Shafter is home to Minter Field, which began operations in June 1941 and saw heavy use during World War II. Approximately 7,000 troops were stationed at the airstrip which hosted up to 600 prisoners of war as well. Today it is publicly owned and administered by the Minter Field Airport District and serves as an industrial center and airport for crop dusters and private aircraft. The Minter Field Museum is maintained on location as well.
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