How to Select the Right Phlebotomy Tech Training Program
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomy technician training near Copper Center AK is a critical first step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult undertaking to analyze and compare all of the school options that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it’s important that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you receive a superior education. In reality, many students begin the process by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional factor you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We’ll discuss a bit more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and must be part of your decision process also. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you choose the best one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online schools.
Should You Become a Phlebotomy Tech?
First of all, not many people are likely to know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The basic answer is a medical professional whose job is to draw blood. We will go into more depth later. So naturally anyone who selects this profession must be comfortable with needles and blood. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Copper Center AK medical facilities, well this profession may not be right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomists tend to work with anxious people who don’t like needles or having their blood drawn. And because most health care facilities are open 24 hours, you may 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 patient and compassionate, this may be the perfect job for you.
Phlebotomist Work Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their primary duty, there is actually much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to check that the tools being used are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork must be properly filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab screening process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Copper Center AK laboratories and are accountable for ensuring that samples are analyzed correctly under the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient responsibilities, they might be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomists Employed?
The most basic answer is wherever there are patients. Their work places are many and varied, including Copper Center AK medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be charged to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing blood from a particular type of patient. For instance, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomists working in a general hospital environment would be drawing blood from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients each day.
Phlebotomy Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to complete and provides a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomist. Available at junior and community colleges, they normally take 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a four year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. Although not required in the majority of states, most Copper Center AK employers require certification prior to hiring technicians. A few of the principal certifying organizations include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are some states that do call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s important that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomy Certificates and Degrees
To start with, let’s dispel one potential mistaken belief. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial portion of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-practical part of the training may be accessed online, it may be a more convenient alternative for many Copper Center AK students. As an added benefit, a number of online colleges are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some costs, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). 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 best choice for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Since you now 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 certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is significant if you will be commuting from Copper Center AK as well as the tuition expense. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist school. All of these decisions are an important part of the process for choosing a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Following are some questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Alaska? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training performed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be working and prepares you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you choose should be accredited by a respected 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 school in addition to an assurance of a quality education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited programs. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the Copper Center AK job market.
What is the Program’s Ranking? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s essential to investigate the reputations of any schools you are reviewing. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their students as part of their job placement program. You can research internet school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also check with some Copper Center AK clinics or hospitals that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations. As a final thought, you can contact the Alaska school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Enough 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. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums might signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with regional health care facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on practical training often not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students establish contacts within the local Copper Center AK health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Finding your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the program has both a good reputation as well as a large network of professional contacts within the Copper Center AK health care community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? Finally, it’s critical to make sure that the ultimate program you pick offers classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is especially true if you opt to still work while going to college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Copper Center AK, make sure they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is should you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Schools For Phlebotomy Copper Center Alaska
Making certain that you choose the right phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying healthcare field. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomist training programs are found in a variety of academic institutions, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive array of courses in medical care and health sciences. Training program options may differ somewhat from state to state as each state has its own mandates when it pertains to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to carefully research and compare each school before making your ultimate decision. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Schools For Phlebotomy and to get more information regarding How Long Is School For Phlebotomy. However, by addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the best phlebotomist school for you. And with the appropriate training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Copper Center AK.
More Bloody Wonderful Locations in Alaska
Copper Center, Alaska
Copper Center (Tl’aticae’e in Ahtna) is a census-designated place (CDP) on the Copper River in Valdez-Cordova Census Area, Alaska, United States. It is two hundred miles northeast of Anchorage. At the 2010 census the population was 328, down from 362 in 2000.
Copper Center is located on the Richardson Highway 4 south on the west bank of the Copper River at the confluence with the Klutina River. It is about 16 miles southeast of Glennallen on the Glenn Highway 1 and about 100 miles north of Valdez.
Copper Center developed where the Valdez Glacier trail reached the Copper River. Andrew Holman was its first resident, establishing a temporary roadhouse near the site in July 1898 to provide shelter for prospectors on their way to the Klondike. He initially erected two tents: one served as Hotel Holman and the other as a makeshift post office. By winter 1899, Holman had replaced his tents with a substantial cabin. Leaving Dick Worthman to run the roadhouse, Holman pioneered the first mail route from Valdez to Eagle.