How to Choose the Best Phlebotomist Training Program
Choosing the ideal phlebotomist school near Cordova AK is an important initial step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging task to assess and compare all of the training options that are available to you. However it’s necessary that you perform your due diligence to ensure that you receive a superior education. In reality, a large number of potential students begin the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially 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 classes later in this article. What’s important to remember is that there is a lot more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and should be part of your selection process also. To assist in that effort, we will supply a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you choose the right one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our conversation about online training.
Should You Go to School to Become a Phlebotomy Technician?
First of all, not many people probably know what a phlebotomist or phlebotomy technician is. The basic definition is a health care professional who draws blood from patients. We will go into more depth later. So of course anyone who selects this profession must be comfortable with needles and blood. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Cordova AK medical facilities, well this job may not be right for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Techs often work with 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 may be expected to work weekends, evenings and, you guessed it even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the blood and needles, and if you enjoy interacting with people and are patient and compassionate, this may be the right job for you.
Phlebotomy Tech Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their main function, there is actually far more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the instruments being employed are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample needs to be correctly labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork needs to be properly completed 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 screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Cordova AK labs and are responsible for making certain that samples are analyzed correctly using the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they might be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The most basic response is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are numerous and diverse, including Cordova AK hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomy techs, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing blood from a specific type of patient. For instance, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Education, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially two kinds 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 as well as the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Available at junior and community colleges, they typically take 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a 4 year program furnish a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will probably want to become certified. Although not required in the majority of states, many Cordova AK employers require certification prior to employing technicians. A few 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 several states that do call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, such as California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you pick a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a premium education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomist Online Schools
To begin with, let’s resolve one possible misconception. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant component of the curriculum 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 completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-practical portion of the training can be attended online, it can be a more practical option for many Cordova AK students. As an additional benefit, some online schools are more affordable than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist program you select 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 approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online may be the best choice for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges
Now that you have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already selected the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is significant if you will be commuting from Cordova AK in addition to the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited online phlebotomist school. Each of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for choosing a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only considerations when making your decision. Following are several questions that you need to ask about all of the schools you are considering before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Alaska? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed prior to working as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you pick should be accredited by a respected national or regional accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited school aside from an assurance of a superior education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited colleges. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Cordova AK job market.
What is the Program’s Reputation? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s important to check the reputations of all schools you are considering. 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 screen internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also talk to several Cordova AK hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and see if they can offer any recommendations. As a final thought, you can check with the Alaska school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. At 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 less than these minimums might signify that the program is not expansive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Ask the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional medical facilities. They are the optimal means to receive hands-on clinical training frequently not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Cordova AK healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are reviewing provide 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 along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Cordova AK healthcare community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it’s crucial to confirm that the final school you pick offers classes at times that are compatible with your hectic lifestyle. This is particularly true if you decide to still work while attending college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Cordova AK, check that they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is should you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Phlebotomy Technician Program Cordova Alaska
Making sure that you select the ideal phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this gratifying healthcare career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs can be offered in a wide range of academic institutions, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive assortment of programs in medical care and health sciences. Training program options may differ slightly across the country as every state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must carefully screen and compare each school prior to making your ultimate selection. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Phlebotomy Technician Program and to get more information regarding Phlebotomy Certificate Program. However, by asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the right phlebotomy college for you. And with the appropriate training, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Cordova AK.
More Bloody Wonderful Locations in Alaska
Cordova (/kɔːrˈdoʊvə, ˈkɔːrdəvə/) is a small town located near the mouth of the Copper River in the Valdez-Cordova Census Area, Alaska, United States, at the head of Orca Inlet on the east side of Prince William Sound. The population was 2,239 at the 2010 census, down from 2,454 in 2000. Cordova was named Puerto Cordova by Spanish explorer Salvador Fidalgo in 1790. No roads connect Cordova to other Alaskan towns, so a plane or ferry is required to travel there. In the Exxon Valdez oil spill of March 1989, an oil tanker ran aground northwest of Cordova, heavily damaging ecology and fishing. It was cleaned up shortly after, but there are lingering effects, such as a lowered population of some birds.
In 1790 the inlet in front of the current Cordova townsite was named Puerto Cordova by Spanish explorer Salvador Fidalgo, after Spanish admiral Luis de Córdova y Córdova. The town of Cordova was named after it, although the inlet itself was later renamed the Orca Inlet. Cordova proper was founded as a result of the discovery of high-grade copper ore at Kennecott, north of Cordova. A group of surveyors from Valdez laid out a town site and Michael James Heney purchased half the land for the terminus of the Copper River and Northwestern Railway after determining that the neighboring town of Katalla was a poor harbor. Heney and his crew held a brief ceremony to organize the town on March 26, 1906. A week later crews arrived to begin work on the railroad. The first lots in the new town site, which make up the heart of present-day Cordova, were sold at auction in May 1908. As the railroad grew, so did the town. Eventually schools, businesses, a hospital, and utilities were established. After the railroad was completed Cordova became the transportation hub for the ore coming out of Kennecott. In the years 1911 to 1938, more than 200 million tons of copper ore was transported through Cordova.
The area around Cordova was historically home to the Eyak, with a population of Chugach to the west, and occasional visits from Ahtna and Tlingit people for trade or battle. The last full-blooded Eyak Marie Smith Jones died in 2008, but the native traditions and lifestyle still has an influence on the local culture. Cordova was also once the home of a booming razor clam industry, and between 1916 and the late 1950s it was known as the "Razor Clam Capital of the World". Commercial harvest in the area was as much as 3.5 million pounds. Returns began declining in the late 1950s, presumably due to overharvesting and a large die-off in 1958. The 1964 Good Friday earthquake effectively and completely obliterated the industry; in some areas, the ground was thrust up by as much as six feet, exposing the already depleted clam beds. There has been no commercial harvest in the area since 1988 with the exception of a brief harvest in 1993.