How to Select the Right Phlebotomy School near Catonsville Maryland
Picking the ideal phlebotomist training near Catonsville MD is a critical first step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting task to assess and compare all of the training options that are available to you. However it’s vital that you complete your due diligence to make sure that you receive a superior education. In fact, a large number of potential students start the process by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional option you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll talk a bit more about online classes later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is far more to comparing 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 decision process as well. 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 select the best one for you. But before we do that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our discussion about online classes.
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Should You Go to School to Become a Phlebotomy Tech?
Right out of the gate, not many people probably know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The basic answer is a health care professional who draws blood from patients. We will provide more details later. So naturally anyone who selects this profession must be OK around needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Catonsville MD medical facilities, well this profession probably is not right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomists routinely work with nervous people who hate needles or having their blood drawn. And because many medical facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be expected to work weekends, nights 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 patient and compassionate, this may be the right job for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their primary duty, there is actually far more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must confirm that the tools being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork has to be properly completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing 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 actually work in Catonsville MD labs and are in charge of making sure that samples are tested correctly using the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they can be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The easiest response is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are numerous and varied, including Catonsville MD hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They can be assigned to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to seniors. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a certain kind of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers 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.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially two types of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes less than 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 phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Available at community and junior colleges, they normally require two years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a four year program offer a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. Although not required in the majority of states, a number of Catonsville MD employers require certification before hiring 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 several states that do call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, like Nevada and California. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only furnishes a superior education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Colleges
To start with, let’s dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A good component of the course of study will be practical training and it will be performed either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-practical part of the training may be attended online, it may be a more convenient option for many Catonsville MD students. As an additional benefit, many online programs are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced also. Just verify that the online phlebotomist college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a superior education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online may be the right choice for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Since you now have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You might 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 important if you will be commuting from Catonsville MD in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online school. All of these decisions are a critical component of the process for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you should ask about each of the colleges you are looking at before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s very important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that meets the state specific requirements for Maryland or the state where you will be working and prepares you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you choose should be accredited by a recognized 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 in addition to an assurance of a superior education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to future employers in the Catonsville MD job market.
What is the College’s Ranking? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it’s imperative to investigate the reputations of any colleges you are considering. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can research online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can even talk to several Catonsville MD clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Maryland school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Sufficient Training Included? 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 clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are reviewing should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to furnish sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with area healthcare facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on clinical training often not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local Catonsville MD healthcare community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Available? Landing your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the programs you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the school has both a good reputation as well as a large network of professional contacts within the Catonsville MD healthcare community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it’s crucial to verify that the final college you pick provides classes at times that are compatible with your busy lifestyle. This is especially important if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Catonsville MD, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option also. Even if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is in case you have to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Phlebotomy Training Course Catonsville Maryland
Making certain that you pick the ideal phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying healthcare field. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomy training programs are available in a wide range of educational institutions, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options may vary slightly across the country as each state has its own mandates when it pertains to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to thoroughly research and compare each school prior to making your final selection. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Phlebotomy Training Course and to get more information regarding Phlebotomy Tech Schools. However, by addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the right phlebotomist college for you. And with the proper training, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Catonsville MD.
More Maryland Bloody Wonderful Locations
Catonsville is a census-designated place (CDP) in Baltimore County, Maryland, United States. The population was 41,567 at the 2010 census. The community lays to the west of Baltimore along the city's border. Catonsville contains the majority of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), a major public research university with close to 14,000 students.
Before European colonists settled in present-day Catonsville, the area was occupied by the Piscataway tribe. These Native Americans had good relations with the first European settlers in the area, but wars and diseases caused their population to decline. The remainder of the tribe’s population gradually dispersed. In the early 1700s, colonists slowly settled in the area, and roads were built. The first of these settlements in the present-day Catonsville area was Johnnycake Town, settled in the 1720s. Johnnycake Town was named after the kind of cornbread sold to travelers at the local tavern. Although Johnnycake Town has since disappeared from maps, its main roads, Johnnycake and Rolling Road, still exist today. Rolling Road was used to transport tobacco south from plantations to the Patapsco River on horse-drawn wagons. In 1787, the Ellicott family built a road, called the Frederick Turnpike, to transport goods from their flour mill, Ellicott Mills, to the Baltimore harbor. The turnpike was built just south of where Johnnycake Town was. Charles Carroll, who was the last surviving signer of the Declaration of Independence, owned land next to the newly built road. He instructed his son-in-law, Richard Caton, to develop the area along the road. He gave his name to the community and called it “Catonville”, although the name was changed to “Catonsville” in the 1830s. For decades, the village remained as a quiet farming community. Businesses sprang up along the Frederick Turnpike to cater to travelers traveling from Ellicott City to the Baltimore harbor. Naturally, Catonsville served as a layover stop for the travelers, and the town increasingly grew and developed. The pleasant surroundings attracted wealthy Baltimorean merchants, who, eager to escape the summer heat, built large Victorian and colonial summer homes there. Many of these homes still stand today. Starting in 1862, horsecar services connected Catonsville to Baltimore, and in 1884, the Catonsville Short Line railroad was built, providing 8 roundtrip trains to Baltimore daily. This allowed people to live in Catonsville but commute to work in Baltimore. Commuter traffic exploded in the 1890s with the construction of electric streetcar lines and fancy housing developments. Catonsville had become one of the first commuter suburbs in the United States. Baltimore had tried to annex Catonsville, although their attempts have all been failures. Their last attempt was in 1918. Homes of all sizes were being constructed rapidly until the 1950s when much of land around the Frederick Turnpike had been converted into housing.
In 2002, the Maryland legislature issued a proclamation declaring Catonsville to be "Music City, Maryland", because of the concentration of musical retail stores, venues and educational facilities in the area. Life Sounds Great is a series of compilation albums highlighting Catonsville musicians.
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