How to Find the Best Phlebotomy Tech School near Frostburg Maryland
Choosing the ideal phlebotomist training near Frostburg MD is an important first step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging undertaking to analyze and compare each of the training options that are available to you. However it’s necessary that you do your due diligence to ensure that you receive a superior education. In reality, many prospective students begin their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you might look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We’ll talk more about online classes later in this article. What’s important to remember is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and should be part of your decision process also. To assist in that effort, we will provide 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 then continue our conversation about online schools.
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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 short answer is a medical professional whose job is to draw blood. We will go into more depth later. So of course anyone who selects this profession must be OK around blood and needles. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Frostburg MD medical environments, well this job probably is not the best choice for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomists routinely work around nervous people who don’t like needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you may be required to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the needles and blood, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are patient and compassionate, this may be the perfect profession for you.
Phlebotomist Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their principal duty, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork has to be correctly filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab screening procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Frostburg MD labs and are responsible for making certain that samples are tested correctly utilizing the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they can be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The quickest answer is wherever they treat patients. Their work environments are many and varied, such as Frostburg MD hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, based on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting samples from a specific type of patient. For instance, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would solely be collecting blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital environment would be collecting blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to complete and offers a basic education as well as 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, although not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they usually take two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a four year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will probably want to get certified. While not required in the majority of states, most Frostburg MD employers require certification prior to employing technicians. A few of the primary certifying agencies 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 additional states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only furnishes a quality education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomy Classes
First, let’s dispel one likely mistaken belief. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant 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. Numerous 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 alternative for many Frostburg MD students. As an added benefit, a number of online colleges are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenses, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered also. 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 clinical and online training, you can receive a superior education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online may be the best choice for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Now that you have a basic understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already chosen the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the school is important if you will be commuting from Frostburg MD as well as the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online school. All of these decisions are an important component of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about all of the schools you are looking at before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to select a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Maryland or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you select should be accredited by a reputable regional or national accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several advantages to graduating from an accredited school aside from a guarantee of a premium education. To begin with, 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 securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Frostburg MD job market.
What is the Program’s Ranking? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s important to check the reputations of any colleges you are looking at. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can research internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also contact some Frostburg MD clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a closing thought, you can contact the Maryland school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Ample Training Included? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. 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 clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums may signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with local medical facilities. They are the ideal means to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local Frostburg MD medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Landing your first phlebotomist position will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges 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 college has both a good reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Frostburg MD medical community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it’s important to confirm that the final program you pick provides classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is especially true if you opt to still work while attending college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Frostburg MD, check that they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is should you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Online Schools For Phlebotomy Certification Frostburg Maryland
Making sure that you enroll in the most suitable phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this fulfilling health care field. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomy training programs are found in a number of educational institutions, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive assortment of programs in medical care and health sciences. Program offerings may vary a bit from state to state as every state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to diligently evaluate and compare each school before making your final selection. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Online Schools For Phlebotomy Certification and to get more information regarding Phlebotomy Degree Programs. However, by addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the best phlebotomist program for you. And with the proper education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Frostburg MD.
More Maryland Bloody Wonderful Locations
Frostburg is a city in Allegany County, Maryland, United States, and is at the head of the Georges Creek Valley. It is part of the Cumberland, MD-WV Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 9,002 at the 2010 census. Located 8 miles (13 km) west of Cumberland, the town is one of the first cities on the "National Road", US 40, and the western terminus of the Western Maryland Scenic Railroad. Since 1973, the city has been served by what is now Interstate 68.
Frostburg is located in the Allegheny Mountains on the eastern slope of Big Savage Mountain. The closest cities to Frostburg are Cumberland, Maryland, 8 miles (13 km) to the east, and Morgantown, West Virginia, 62 miles (100 km) to the west.
Due to its average elevation of 2,000 feet (610 m) above sea level and location near the Allegheny Front, Frostburg has a colder, wetter climate than much of the rest of the state, and falls in USDA hardiness zone 6b. Under the Köppen climate classification, it has a humid continental climate (Dfb), with cold, snowy winters, and warm, humid summers. The daily mean temperature ranges from 26.0 °F (−3.3 °C) in January to 69.0 °F (20.6 °C) in July. Sub-0 °F (−18 °C) occur on 3.8 nights per year, while, on average, there are 1.4 days with 90 °F (32 °C)+ highs, though these are not recorded every year. Due to orographic lift, driving conditions on I-68 and US 40 can be very hazardous despite timely state and local road maintenance services, and the town averages just over 80 inches (200 cm) of snowfall a season; significant falls can occur as early as October and as late as May. Frostburg's greatest one-month snowfall was 67 inches (170 cm) in January 1978, and Frostburg is second in Maryland for the greatest single-season snowfall with a total of 180 inches (460 cm) in the winter of 1995−96.
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