How to Pick the Right Phlebotomy Training Course near Lexington Park Maryland
Choosing the right phlebotomy technician school near Lexington Park MD is an essential first step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult task to evaluate and compare each of the school options that are available to you. However it’s vital that you complete your due diligence to ensure that you receive a quality education. In reality, most potential students start the process by considering 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Yet another factor you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We’ll talk 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 locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and must be part of your selection process also. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you pick the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our conversation about online classes.
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Should You Become a Phlebotomy Tech?
First of all, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The basic definition is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. We will provide more details later. So naturally anyone who selects this profession must be able to handle needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Lexington Park MD medical facilities, well this profession may not be right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomists often work around nervous people who don’t like needles or having a blood sample taken. And because most health care 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. While that is their principal duty, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to verify that the instruments being used are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample needs to be properly labeled with the patient’s data. Next, paperwork needs to be accurately filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Lexington Park MD labs and are responsible for making sure that samples are tested properly under the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they might be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?
The simplest answer is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are many and varied, including Lexington Park MD medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, based on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting samples from a specific type of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be drawing blood from senior patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients each day.
Phlebotomist Training, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to finish and furnishes a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they normally take two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program furnish a more expansive background in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will probably want to be certified. While not required in most states, most Lexington Park MD employers require certification before hiring 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 several states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, such as California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a superior education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomist Online Schools
To begin with, let’s dispel one possible misconception. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A good part of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical component of the training may be accessed online, it might be a more convenient alternative for some Lexington Park MD students. As an added benefit, some online colleges are less expensive than their traditional counterparts. And some expenses, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist college you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a premium education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online might be the best option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Now that you have a general idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already picked the type of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is important if you will be commuting from Lexington Park MD in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy school. All of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are looking at before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed prior to working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s very important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Maryland or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you select should be accredited by a reputable national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited program aside from an assurance of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification exam administered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited schools. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the Lexington Park MD job market.
What is the College’s Ranking? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it’s important to check the reputations of any schools you are considering. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their students as part of their job placement program. You can screen online school rating and review services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even check with a few Lexington Park MD hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and see if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Maryland school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Included? To begin with, check with 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 considering should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums might signify that the program is not expansive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internships Included? Find out from the programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with local health care facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on practical training often not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Lexington Park MD medical community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Finding your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a higher rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the school has both a good reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the Lexington Park MD healthcare community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it’s crucial to verify that the final program you select provides classes at times that are compatible with your active lifestyle. This is especially true if you opt to still work while attending school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Lexington Park MD, make certain 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 attend online, with the clinical 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 as a result of illness or emergencies.
Phlebotomy Technician Programs Lexington Park Maryland
Making certain that you pick the ideal phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomist training programs can be offered in a wide range of academic institutions, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive array of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Program offerings can vary a bit across the country as every state has its own criteria when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to diligently research and compare each school before making your ultimate decision. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Phlebotomy Technician Programs and to get more information regarding Phlebotomist Courses Online. However, by addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the ideal phlebotomy school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Lexington Park MD.
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Lexington Park, Maryland
Lexington Park is a census-designated place (CDP) in St. Mary's County, Maryland, United States, and the principal community of the Lexington Park, Maryland Micropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 11,626 at the 2010 census.
Archeological research in the county has shown that Native American peoples inhabited the area for at least 10,000 years. At the time of the arrival of the first colonists, the area was inhabited by the Yaocomico branch of the Piscataway Indian Nation. The Piscataway Nation, although fragmented, still exists today, and has small communities and cultural centers in other parts of the county.
The area was expanded into by "planters" (mostly tobacco farmers) who moved into the area as the original settlement in St. Mary's City grew. Early plantations were first farmed by indentured and free labor, but in the late 1600s slavery began to establish itself in Maryland and the character of farming changed due to this. Wealth was concentrated in very few hands and small free farmers and laborers were pushed out or "down" (into poverty) due to competition with slave labor.