How to Enroll in the Best Phlebotomy Technician Training Program near Clearlake Washington
Selecting the ideal phlebotomist training near Clearlake WA is a critical initial step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a difficult undertaking to investigate and compare each of the school alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it’s vital that you complete your due diligence to make sure that you receive a superior education. In fact, most prospective students start the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Another factor you may consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll talk more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors such as reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and should be part of your decision process too. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you select the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our discussion about online training.
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Should You Go to School to Become a Phlebotomy Technician?
Right out of the gate, few people probably know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The basic definition is a medical professional who draws blood from patients. We will go into more depth later. So naturally anyone who decides to enter this profession must be able to handle needles and blood. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Clearlake WA medical facilities, well this job probably is not the best choice for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Techs often work with anxious 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, nights 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 could be the perfect job for you.
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Phlebotomy Tech Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. Although that is their main task, there is in fact much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the tools being used are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample must be properly labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork needs to be correctly filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Many phlebotomists in fact work in Clearlake WA laboratories and are responsible for making certain that samples are tested properly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they can be called upon to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Work?
The easiest response is wherever patients are treated. Their work environments are many and diverse, such as Clearlake WA medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be charged to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or young children to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing samples from a particular kind of patient. For example, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be drawing blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital environment would be collecting blood from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from new patients each day.
Phlebotomist Education, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two types of programs that offer phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes under a year to complete and offers a general education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomist. Available at junior and community colleges, they usually take two years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less accessible and as a 4 year program provide a more expansive background in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will probably want to be certified. Although not mandated in most states, many Clearlake WA employers look for certification before 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 a few states that do require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a premium education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomist Online Certificates and Degrees
To begin with, let’s resolve one potential misconception. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant component of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-practical component of the training can be accessed online, it could be a more practical option for some Clearlake WA students. As an additional benefit, a number of online schools are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenses, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomy program you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a premium education with this means of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online may be the ideal option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Now that you have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already selected the type of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is important if you will be commuting from Clearlake WA as well as the tuition expense. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online school. Each of these decisions are an important component of the process for picking 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 need to ask about each of the colleges you are looking at before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Washington or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you pick should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from an assurance of a quality education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification exam offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are often not available for non-accredited programs. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Clearlake WA job market.
What is the School’s Reputation? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it’s imperative to check out the reputations of all colleges you are reviewing. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can research internet school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even check with several Clearlake WA hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and see if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can contact the Washington school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Adequate Training Provided? 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 (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to receive hands-on clinical training often not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Clearlake WA medical community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Landing your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the school has both a good reputation together with a large network of professional contacts within the Clearlake WA health care community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s crucial to make sure that the final school you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your hectic schedule. This is especially true if you decide to still work while going to school. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Clearlake WA, make certain they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option also. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is in case you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Phlebotomy Online Courses Certification Clearlake WA
Free Info on Phlebotomy Education Clearlake Washington
Making certain that you select the most suitable phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be offered in a number of academic institutes, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive assortment of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Course options may vary somewhat from state to state as each state has its own prerequisites when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must carefully screen and compare each college prior to making your ultimate decision. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Free Info on Phlebotomy Education and to get more information regarding Compare Phlebotomist Classes Near Me. However, by asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the best phlebotomist college for you. And with the appropriate training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Clearlake WA.
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