How to Choose the Right Phlebotomy Tech School
Selecting the ideal phlebotomist school near Tucson AZ is a critical initial step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult undertaking to analyze and compare each of the training options that are accessible to you. However it’s necessary that you perform your due diligence to make certain that you get a superior education. In fact, many prospective students start the process by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Yet another option you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll review more about online schools later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and should be part of your selection process as well. Toward that end, we will supply a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you choose the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online classes.
Should You Go to School to Become a Phlebotomy Technician?
First of all, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The short answer 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 OK around blood and needles. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Tucson AZ medical facilities, well this job probably is not right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomy Technicians routinely work around nervous people who hate needles or having their blood taken. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you may be expected to work weekends, nights and even on holidays. But if you don’t mind working with the blood and needles, and if you enjoy helping people and are compassionate and very patient, this could be the perfect profession for you.
Phlebotomist Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their primary responsibility, there is actually much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to verify that the instruments being used are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample needs to be correctly labeled with the patient’s data. Afterward, paperwork has to be properly filled out in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab screening procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Tucson AZ laboratories and are in charge of making sure that samples are tested correctly utilizing the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they can be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The quickest response is wherever they treat patients. Their work environments are numerous and diverse, such as Tucson AZ hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to senior citizens. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a certain kind of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would only be collecting blood from senior patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers solely. In contrast, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital environment would be collecting blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients each day.
Phlebotomy Education, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially 2 kinds of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to complete and furnishes a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they normally take 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program offer a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. After you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, most Tucson AZ employers look for certification before employing technicians. Some of the primary certifying organizations 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 in order to practice as a phlebotomist, such as Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a quality education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Classes
To start with, let’s dispel one possible misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial portion of the course of study will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical component of the training may be attended online, it could be a more convenient option for many Tucson AZ students. As an additional benefit, many online schools are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some costs, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be minimized also. Just verify that the online phlebotomy school you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a superior education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online may be the ideal option for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Since you now have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already chosen the kind of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is relevant if you will be commuting from Tucson AZ as well as the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online school. All of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Following are several questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are reviewing before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it’s very important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for any exams you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you select should be accredited by a reputable national or regional accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited school in addition to an assurance of a premium education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are typically not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Tucson AZ job market.
What is the School’s Ranking? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s essential to check the reputations of any colleges you are looking at. You can begin 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 solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also contact a few Tucson AZ clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any recommendations. As a final thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? First, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are reviewing should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internships Included? Ask the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with area healthcare facilities. They are the ideal means to obtain hands-on clinical training often not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local Tucson AZ medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Landing your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place most of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the school has both a good reputation along with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Tucson AZ medical community.
Are Class Times Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it’s crucial to confirm that the ultimate school you pick offers classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is especially true if you choose to still work while attending school. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Tucson AZ, check that they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option also. And 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 because of emergencies or illness.
Education Requirements For A Phlebotomist Tucson Arizona
Making sure that you pick the right phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are offered in a number of academic institutes, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options can differ somewhat across the country as every state has its own requirements when it comes to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to thoroughly research and compare each school before making your ultimate choice. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Education Requirements For A Phlebotomist and to get more information regarding Phlebotomy Colleges. 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 phlebotomy program for you. And with the proper training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Tucson AZ.
More Bloody Wonderful Locations in Arizona
Tucson (/ˈtuːsɒn, tuːˈsɒn/) is a city and the county seat of Pima County, Arizona, United States, and home to the University of Arizona. The 2010 United States Census put the population at 520,116, while the 2015 estimated population of the entire Tucson metropolitan statistical area (MSA) was 980,263. The Tucson MSA forms part of the larger Tucson-Nogales combined statistical area (CSA), with a total population of 1,010,025 as of the 2010 Census. Tucson is the second-largest populated city in Arizona behind Phoenix, both of which anchor the Arizona Sun Corridor. The city is 108 miles (174 km) southeast of Phoenix and 60 mi (97 km) north of the U.S.–Mexico border. Tucson is the 33rd largest city and the 58th largest metropolitan area in the United States (2014).
Major incorporated suburbs of Tucson include Oro Valley and Marana northwest of the city, Sahuarita south of the city, and South Tucson in an enclave south of downtown. Communities in the vicinity of Tucson (some within or overlapping the city limits) include Casas Adobes, Catalina Foothills, Flowing Wells, Midvale Park, Tanque Verde, Tortolita, and Vail. Towns outside the Tucson metro area include Benson to the southeast, Catalina and Oracle to the north, and Green Valley to the south.
The Spanish name of the city, Tucsón [tukˈson], is derived from the O'odham Cuk Ṣon [tʃʊk ʂɔːn], meaning "(at the) base of the black [hill]", a reference to a basalt-covered hill now known as Sentinel Peak, also known as "A" Mountain. Tucson is sometimes referred to as "The Old Pueblo".
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