How to Pick the Best Phlebotomy Training Program
Choosing the right phlebotomy training near Topsham ME is an important first step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a difficult task to investigate and compare all of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s necessary that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you obtain a quality education. In reality, many potential students start the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Another factor you might consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll talk 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 such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and need to be part of your selection process also. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you pick the best one for you. But before we do that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our conversation about online training.
Should You Choose a Career as a Phlebotomy Tech?
First of all, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The basic definition is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. We will provide more details later. So of course anyone who selects this profession must be OK around blood and needles. And if you are nervous in hospitals or other Topsham ME medical environments, well this profession may not be the best choice for you. And now let’s talk about the patients. Phlebotomy Techs routinely work around nervous people who hate needles or having a blood sample taken. And because many medical facilities are open 24 hours, you may be expected to work weekends, nights 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 right profession for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. Although that is their main task, there is actually much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to verify that the tools being employed are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient’s data. Afterward, paperwork has to be accurately filled out to be able 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 can be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Topsham ME labs and are accountable for ensuring that samples are tested properly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they might be required to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The easiest response is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are numerous and diverse, including Topsham ME medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or young children to senior citizens. Some phlebotomy techs, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a particular kind 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 working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers solely. On the other hand, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be drawing blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially two types of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to finish and furnishes a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they typically require 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program provide a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. Although not mandated in most states, many Topsham ME employers require 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 a few states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you enroll in a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a premium education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Colleges
To begin with, let’s resolve one likely misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial part of the curriculum will be practical 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. However since the non-practical portion of the training can be accessed online, it can be a more practical option for many Topsham ME students. As an added benefit, many online schools are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some costs, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist school you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can receive a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your certificate or degree online may be the best choice for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Since you now have a general understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You might have already selected the type of program you intend 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 Topsham ME in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an accredited phlebotomy online school. Each of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy school or program. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Following are several questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are reviewing before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while some 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 need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to select a phlebotomist program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Maine or the state where you will be working and readies you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you pick should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a premium education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Topsham ME 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 caliber. So along with accreditation, it’s essential to check out the reputations of all colleges you are considering. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also talk to several Topsham ME hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the Maine school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in total 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. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internships Included? Find out from the schools you are considering if they have an internship program in partnership with regional healthcare facilities. They are the optimal way to receive hands-on practical training often not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Topsham ME medical community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Landing your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the college has both a good reputation along with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Topsham ME medical community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s critical to confirm that the ultimate college you pick provides classes at times that are compatible with your busy lifestyle. This is especially true if you opt to continue working while attending college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Topsham ME, make sure they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option also. Even if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is in case you need to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
How To Become A Phlebotomist Topsham Maine
Making certain that you choose the most suitable phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare field. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a quality program. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs are offered in a variety of educational institutes, including junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive range of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options may vary a bit across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must carefully research and compare each college prior to making your final decision. You originally came to this website due to an interest in How To Become A Phlebotomist and to get more information regarding Phlebotomist School Cost. However, by addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the right phlebotomy school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Topsham ME.
More Bloody Wonderful Locations in Maine
Topsham is a town in Sagadahoc County, Maine, United States. The population was 8,784 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Portland–South Portland–Biddeford, Maine metropolitan statistical area. The town is home to the annual Topsham Fair.
Called Sawacook, the area was territory of the Pejepscot Abenaki Indians, a subtribe of the Anasagunticooks (now Androscoggins), who controlled the Androscoggin River. They lived and fished at Pejepscot Falls. But a plague, probably smallpox brought by Europeans, decimated the tribe's population in 1615–1616. On June 16, 1632, the area was granted by the Plymouth Council to Thomas Purchase and George Way, later acquired by Richard Wharton and then, in 1714, by the Pejepscot Company.
The first sawmill was built in 1716 on the Cathance River and, in 1717, the plantation received the name Topsham, named for Topsham in Devon, England. On January 31, 1764, it was incorporated as a town by the Massachusetts General Court.Shipbuilding and lumber mills were important early businesses, the latter especially active between 1750–1770. There was a gristmill and brickyard. Pejepscot Falls provided water power to operate mills, and industries included a door, window sash and stairway factory, shingle mill, watch factory, pottery maker, nail factory, pitchfork factory, two tanneries, tobacco manufacturer, two feldspar quarries and a marble works. In 1856, the Sagadahoc Agricultural & Horticultural Society erected its building and fairgrounds, and the town remains host to the annual Topsham Fair.
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