How to Enroll in the Right Phlebotomy Training Program
Selecting the right phlebotomy technician training near Fort Rucker AL is an essential initial step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging undertaking to investigate and compare all of the school options that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it’s necessary that you do your due diligence to make sure that you receive a superior education. In fact, most students start the process by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. Yet another option you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll review a bit more about online classes later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and should be part of your decision process as well. Toward that end, we will furnish 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 cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our conversation about online classes.
Should You Choose a Career as a Phlebotomy Tech?
Right out of the gate, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The short answer is a health care professional who draws blood from patients. We will provide more details later. So naturally anyone who decides to enter this profession must be able to handle needles and blood. And if you are not comfortable in hospitals or other Fort Rucker AL medical facilities, well this job probably is not right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Techs often work around nervous people who hate needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you will probably be expected to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the blood and needles, and if you enjoy helping people and are patient and compassionate, this could be the perfect profession for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal function, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must confirm that the instruments being utilized are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample needs to be accurately labeled with the patient’s data. Next, paperwork needs to be accurately completed to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Fort Rucker AL labs and are accountable for making sure that samples are tested correctly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they may be required to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Work?
The simplest answer is wherever they treat patients. Their work places are many and diverse, such as Fort Rucker AL hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or young children to seniors. Some phlebotomists, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing blood from a specific kind of patient. For example, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be drawing blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be collecting blood from a wide range of patients and would work with different patients every day.
Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially 2 types of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to finish and provides a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they normally require 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program offer a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. While not required in the majority of states, a number of Fort Rucker AL employers look for certification before employing technicians. Some of the principal 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 in order to practice as a phlebotomist, including California and Nevada. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it’s important that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a quality education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Classes
First, let’s resolve one possible mistaken belief. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A good part of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Many courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-practical component of the training can be attended online, it can be a more convenient option for many Fort Rucker AL students. As an added benefit, some online classes are less expensive than their traditional counterparts. And some expenditures, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced as well. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy college you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online 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 might be the ideal option for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Now that you have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already decided on the kind of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school is significant if you will be commuting from Fort Rucker AL as well as the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomy program. Each of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you need to ask about all of the colleges you are reviewing before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to select a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you choose should be accredited by a reputable regional or national accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited school aside from a guarantee of a quality education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to future employers in the Fort Rucker AL job market.
What is the Program’s Reputation? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it’s imperative to check the reputations of any schools you are looking at. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job placement program. You can screen online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even talk to several Fort Rucker AL hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? First, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums may signify that the program is not expansive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the schools you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on practical training frequently not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Fort Rucker AL healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Landing your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the schools you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the program has both a good reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Fort Rucker AL healthcare community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? And last, it’s important to verify that the final college you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is particularly true if you opt to continue working while going to college. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Fort Rucker AL, check that they are offered at those times. Also, 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 ask what the make-up policy is should you need to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
How Long Is A Phlebotomy Course Fort Rucker Alabama
Making sure that you choose the ideal phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be offered in a variety of academic institutes, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide assortment of programs in medical care and health sciences. Course offerings may differ a bit across the country as every state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you need to thoroughly research and compare each school before making your final selection. You originally came to this website due to an interest in How Long Is A Phlebotomy Course and to get more information regarding Best Phlebotomy Training. However, by asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the best phlebotomist school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Fort Rucker AL.
More Bloody Wonderful Locations in Alabama
Fort Rucker is a U.S. Army post located primarily in Dale County, Alabama, United States. It was named for a Civil War officer, Confederate General Edmund Rucker. The post is the primary flight training installation for U.S. Army Aviators and is home to the United States Army Aviation Center of Excellence (USAACE) and the United States Army Aviation Museum. Small sections of the post also lie in Coffee, Geneva, and Houston counties. Part of the Dale County section of the base is a census-designated place; its population was 4,636 at the 2010 census.
The main post has entrances from three bordering cities, Daleville, Ozark and Enterprise. In the years before the September 11, 2001 attacks, the main post (except airfields and other restricted areas) was an open post with unmanned gates allowing civilians to drive through. Following the attacks, this policy was changed, and the post is now closed to unauthorized traffic and visitors.
The U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence is the dominant military facility at Fort Rucker. Training, doctrine, and testing are all key parts of the Center's mission to develop Army Aviation's capabilities. All Army Aviation training has been undertaken at Fort Rucker since 1973, as well as training of US Air Force and ally helicopter pilots and air crew. The Center is home to the US Army Aviation Technical Test Center (ATTC), which conducts developmental aircraft testing for Army Aviation. The United States Army Operational Test and Evaluation Command's Test and Evaluation Coordination Office and TH-67 primary and instrument training are both located at Cairns Army Airfield.