How to Choose the Best Phlebotomist Training Program near Park Ridge Illinois
Picking the ideal phlebotomy technician school near Park Ridge IL is a critical initial step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting undertaking to evaluate and compare each of the school options that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s necessary that you complete your due diligence to make sure that you receive a superior education. In fact, many prospective students start the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Another factor you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We’ll review a bit more about online classes later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and should be part of your selection process as well. Toward that end, we will supply a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you select the right one for you. But before we do that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online classes.
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Should You Go to School to Become a Plebotomist?
First of all, not many people probably know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The short definition is a health care professional who draws blood from patients. We will go into more depth later. So of course anyone who selects this profession must be able to handle needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Park Ridge IL medical environments, well this profession may not be right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians often work with nervous people who hate needles or having their blood drawn. And because many medical facilities are open around the clock, you may be required 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 may be the right job for you.
Phlebotomist Work Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. Although that is their primary task, there is in fact far more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to check that the tools being used are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork has to be properly filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab testing procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Park Ridge IL labs and are responsible for making sure that samples are analyzed properly using the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they can be required to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The most basic answer is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are numerous and diverse, such as Park Ridge IL hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or toddlers to seniors. Some phlebotomy techs, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a certain type of patient. For instance, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be drawing blood from elderly patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital environment would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Education, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two kinds of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to finish and offers a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest route 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. Offered at community and junior colleges, they normally take two years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less accessible and as a four year program offer a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to be certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, many Park Ridge IL employers require certification prior to employing technicians. A few 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 prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, like Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a premium education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomist Online Schools
First, let’s resolve one likely misconception. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A good component of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Many courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-clinical component of the training may be accessed online, it could be a more practical alternative for some Park Ridge IL students. As an additional benefit, a number of online colleges are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenses, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced also. Just confirm that the online phlebotomist college you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive 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 obtaining your certificate or degree online might be the best option for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Now that you have a general idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You may have already decided on the type of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is significant if you will be commuting from Park Ridge IL in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online program. All of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for selecting a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Following are several questions that you need to ask about each of the colleges you are considering before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Illinois or the state where you will be working and readies you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you choose should be accredited by a recognized 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 program aside from a guarantee of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Park Ridge IL job market.
What is the School’s Ranking? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it’s imperative to check the reputations of any schools you are considering. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their students as part of their job placement program. You can research online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even talk to some Park Ridge IL hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and find out if they can provide any recommendations. As a final thought, you can check with the Illinois school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Included? First, check with the state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internships Included? Find out from the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with local medical facilities. They are the optimal way to receive hands-on practical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local Park Ridge IL medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the schools you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation together with a large network of professional contacts within the Park Ridge IL medical community.
Are Classes Conveniently Scheduled? Finally, it’s important to confirm that the final program you choose provides classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is especially true if you choose to continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Park Ridge IL, check that they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option as well. And if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is in case you need to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Top Phlebotomy Tech Education Park Ridge Illinois
Making sure that you select the right phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying healthcare career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a quality school. Phlebotomist training programs can be available in a number of academic institutions, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive array of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program offerings may vary a bit across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it pertains to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must carefully research and compare each school prior to making your ultimate choice. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Top Phlebotomy Tech Education and to get more information regarding Phlebotomy College. However, by addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy college for you. And with the proper education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Park Ridge IL.
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Park Ridge, Illinois
Park Ridge is a city in Cook County, Illinois, United States, and a Chicago suburb. The population was 37,494 at the 2017 census. It is located 15 miles (24 km) northwest of downtown Chicago. It is close to O'Hare International Airport, major expressways, and rail transportation. It is a part of the Chicago metropolitan area, bordering three northwestern neighborhoods of Chicago's Far North Side (Edison Park, Norwood Park, and O'Hare.)
As its name suggests, Park Ridge lies on a ridge. The soil is abundant with clay deposits, which made it a brick-making center for the developing city of Chicago. Park Ridge was originally called Pennyville to honor George Penny, the businessman who owned the local brickyard along with Robert Meacham. Later it was named Brickton. The Des Plaines River divides Park Ridge from neighboring Des Plaines, Illinois, which is west of Park Ridge. Chicago is south and east of Park Ridge, and Niles and unincorporated Maine Township are to its north.
The area of Park Ridge was inhabited by the Potawatomie until they were removed in 1833. The area was a convenient portage between the Des Plaines and Chicago rivers for the French explorers and in the early 1830s, the first settlers arrived from New England and New York. In 1854 George Penny established a brickworks in the area. In 1910 Park Ridge had a population of 2,009. In 1930 the population was 10,417. In 1950 the population was 16,602. In 1960 the population was 32,625, with 99.9% of the population white. There were five African-Americans and 31 people classed other than black or white. By 1970, the population had risen to 42,466. In 2016, former First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton campaigned as the Democratic candidate for President of the United States. She was a graduate of the first class of Park Ridge's Maine Township High School South (1965).
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