How to Enroll in the Right Phlebotomy Tech Training Classes near Cedar Rapids Iowa
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomist training near Cedar Rapids IA is an essential initial step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult undertaking to assess and compare all of the training alternatives that are accessible to you. However it’s necessary that you complete your due diligence to make sure that you get a quality education. In fact, most prospective students start their search by looking at 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 discuss a bit more about online classes later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and need to be part of your decision process also. To assist in that effort, we will furnish 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 resume our discussion about online training.
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Should You Go to School to Become a Plebotomist?
Right out of the gate, not many people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The basic 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 OK around blood and needles. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Cedar Rapids IA medical environments, well this profession may not be the best choice for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Techs routinely work around nervous people who don’t like needles or having their blood taken. And because many medical facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be required to work weekends, evenings and even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the needles and blood, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are compassionate and very patient, this could be the right job for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their principal responsibility, there is in fact much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must verify that the tools being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample needs to be correctly labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork must be accurately filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory screening process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists in fact work in Cedar Rapids IA labs and are accountable for making sure that samples are analyzed correctly under the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they might be asked to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The easiest response is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are numerous and diverse, including Cedar Rapids IA hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing samples from a certain kind of patient. For instance, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be drawing blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. On the other hand, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are basically two types of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to complete and offers a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers 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 junior and community colleges, they usually require 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program provide a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. While not required in most states, a number of Cedar Rapids IA employers require certification prior to hiring technicians. Some of the main 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 in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, like Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only furnishes a superior education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Schools
First, let’s dispel one potential mistaken belief. You can’t get all of your phlebotomist training online. A good component of the course of study will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-clinical component of the training can be attended online, it may be a more convenient alternative for some Cedar Rapids IA students. As an added benefit, some online classes are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenses, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist program you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a superior education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online may be the right option for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Now that you have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You may have already selected the kind of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is relevant if you will be commuting from Cedar Rapids IA as well as the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online college. All of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Following are several questions that you should ask about all of the schools you are considering before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed before working as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you might need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Iowa or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for all examinations you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you enroll in should be accredited by a respected regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a premium education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are typically not available for non-accredited schools. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to future employers in the Cedar Rapids IA job market.
What is the College’s Reputation? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it’s imperative to investigate the reputations of any colleges you are looking at. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can research online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also talk to a few Cedar Rapids IA hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Iowa school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? First, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums might indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the schools you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with area healthcare facilities. They are the ideal way to get hands-on practical training often not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish contacts within the local Cedar Rapids IA health care community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the school has both a good reputation along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Cedar Rapids IA healthcare community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it’s crucial to confirm that the ultimate program you pick provides classes at times that are compatible with your active schedule. This is especially important if you decide to still work while attending college. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Cedar Rapids IA, make sure they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is should you need to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Where Can I Take Phlebotomy Classes Cedar Rapids Iowa
Making sure that you pick the right phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this fulfilling medical care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomy training programs can be found in a wide range of academic institutions, such as community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide assortment of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Program offerings can differ slightly from state to state as every state has its own mandates when it comes to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you need to thoroughly evaluate and compare each college prior to making your final selection. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Where Can I Take Phlebotomy Classes and to get more information regarding Find Phlebotomy Associates Degrees Near Me. However, by asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can select the best phlebotomist program for you. And with the proper education, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Cedar Rapids IA.
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Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Cedar Rapids /ˈsiːdər ˈræpɪdz/ is the second-largest city in Iowa and is the county seat of Linn County. The city lies on both banks of the Cedar River, 20 miles (32 km) north of Iowa City and 100 miles (160 km) northeast of Des Moines, the state's capital and largest city. It is a part of the Cedar Rapids/Iowa City Corridor of Linn, Benton, Cedar, Jones, Johnson, and Washington counties.
As of the 2010 United States Census, the city population was 126,326. The estimated population of the three-county Metropolitan Statistical Area, which includes the nearby cities of Marion and Hiawatha, was 255,452 in 2008. Cedar Rapids is an economic hub of the state, located at the core of the Interstate 380 corridor.
The Cedar Rapids Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) is also a part of a Combined Statistical Area (CSA) with the Iowa City MSA. This CSA plus two additional counties are known as the Iowa City-Cedar Rapids (ICR) Corridor and collectively have a population of over 450,000.
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