How to Choose the Best Phlebotomist School
Choosing the right phlebotomist school near Opp AL is an essential initial step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a difficult undertaking to investigate and compare each of the training alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s important that you do your due diligence to make sure that you get a superior education. In fact, many potential students start their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another factor you might look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. We’ll review more about online schools later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and should be part of your decision process too. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you choose the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online training.
Should You Become a Phlebotomy Technician?
Right out of the gate, not many people probably know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The short definition is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. We will go into more depth later. So of course anyone who decides to enter this profession must be OK around needles and blood. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Opp AL medical environments, well this profession may not be the best choice for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians tend to work with anxious people who hate needles or having a blood sample taken. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you will probably be required to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the needles and blood, and if you enjoy helping people and are patient and compassionate, this may be the right job for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Work Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their principal function, there is in fact far more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must verify that the instruments being employed are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample has to be properly labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork has to be correctly completed to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory screening procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists in fact work in Opp AL labs and are responsible for ensuring that samples are analyzed correctly utilizing the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they may be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomists Employed?
The quickest answer is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are many and varied, including Opp AL hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be charged to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing 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 elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital environment would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients every day.
Phlebotomy Education, Licensing and Certification
There are primarily two types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to complete and offers a general education together 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 specifically a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they normally require two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a four year program provide a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will probably want to get certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, most Opp AL employers look for certification before hiring technicians. Some of the main 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 require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, such as California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s important that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomist Online Training
To start with, let’s dispel one possible misconception. You can’t get all of your phlebotomist training online. A good component of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. A large number of courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-clinical component of the training can be attended online, it might be a more convenient alternative for some Opp AL students. As an added benefit, a number of online colleges are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some expenses, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered also. Just verify that the online phlebotomy program you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a premium education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your degree or certificate online might be the right option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Now that you have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You might have already picked the kind of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the school is relevant if you will be commuting from Opp AL in addition to the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online program. All of these decisions are a critical component 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 some questions that you should ask about each of the colleges you are considering prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Your State? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed before working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, 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 readies you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you pick should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many 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 be able to take a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are often not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to future employers in the Opp AL job market.
What is the College’s Reputation? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with 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 refer their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can research online school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also check with several Opp AL clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and find out if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? First, contact the state regulator where you will be working to learn 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 no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask the schools you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with area medical facilities. They are the ideal way to receive hands-on practical training typically not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local Opp AL health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Finding your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Ask if the schools you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation together with a large network of professional contacts within the Opp AL healthcare community.
Are Class Times Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it’s crucial to confirm that the final college you choose provides classes at times that are compatible with your busy schedule. This is particularly important if you choose to still work while attending college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Opp AL, make certain they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure 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 completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is should you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Phlebotomists Courses Opp Alabama
Making sure that you choose the ideal phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this gratifying health care field. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a premium program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are offered in a number of educational institutes, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options may differ somewhat from state to state as every state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to thoroughly evaluate and compare each school prior to making your ultimate choice. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Phlebotomists Courses and to get more information regarding 4 Week Phlebotomy Training. However, by asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the ideal phlebotomy school for you. And with the proper training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Opp AL.
More Bloody Wonderful Locations in Alabama
Opp is located in eastern Covington County at 31°16′59″N 86°15′17″W / 31.28306°N 86.25472°W / 31.28306; -86.25472 (31.283083, -86.254661). It is bordered by the town of Babbie to the west and the town of Horn Hill to the southwest.
As of the census of 2010, there were 6,659 people and 2,655 households, and 1,823 families residing in the city. The population density was 388 people per square mile. The racial makeup of the city was 80.9% White, 16.7% Black or African American, 0.6% Native American, 0.3% Asian, and 1.2% from two or more races. 0.9% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
In 2000, there were 2,753 households out of which 28.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.5% were married couples living together, 14.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.8% were non-families. 28.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.33 and the average family size was 2.85.