Selecting a Phlebotomy Technician Training Program near Alabaster Alabama
Selecting the right phlebotomy training near Alabaster AL is a critical initial step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult undertaking to investigate and compare each of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s necessary that you do your due diligence to ensure that you get a superior education. In fact, most prospective students start their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you might consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. We’ll discuss a bit more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to remember is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and should be part of your decision process also. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are considering to help you select the best one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online classes.
Phlebotomy Tech Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their main duty, there is actually so much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must confirm that the instruments being utilized are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample has to be properly labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork needs to be accurately completed to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Alabaster AL area laboratories and are in charge of making sure that samples are analyzed properly using the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they might be required to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?
The most basic answer is wherever they treat patients. Their work places are many and diverse, including Alabaster AL medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be charged to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood samples from a specific kind of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be drawing blood from senior patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients each day.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two types of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes less than a year to finish and furnishes a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Available at Alabaster AL junior and community colleges, they usually require two years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a 4 year program furnish a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. While not required in the majority of states, a number of Alabaster AL employers require certification prior to hiring technicians. Some of the key certifying agencies include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP).
- American Medical Technologists (AMT).
There are some states that do require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, such as Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a superior education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Training
To begin with, let’s resolve one possible misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A good component of the curriculum will be clinical 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 prior to graduation. However since the non-clinical component of the training may be accessed online, it can be a more practical option for some Alabaster AL students. As an added benefit, some online colleges are more affordable than their traditional competitors. And some costs, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist college you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a premium education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online may be the right option for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Since you now have a general understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the type of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the college is important in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an phlebotomy online school. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for picking a school or program. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you should ask about all of the Alabaster AL colleges you are looking at prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed before working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and prepares you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you enroll in should be accredited by a reputable regional or national accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several advantages to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. First, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Alabaster AL job market.
What is the Program’s Ranking? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist 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 any schools you are reviewing. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can research internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even contact a few Alabaster AL clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and see if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Ample Training Included? First, check with the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums might signify that the Alabaster AL training program is not expansive enough to furnish sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Ask the schools you are considering if they have an internship program in partnership with Alabaster AL health care facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Alabaster medical community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Finding your first phlebotomist position will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the college has both a good reputation as well as a large network of professional contacts within the Alabaster AL medical community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it’s critical to make sure that the final school you choose provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you opt to continue working while attending college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Alabaster AL, make sure they are offered 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 practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is should you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Alabaster AL?
Alabaster is a city and southern suburb of Birmingham in Shelby County, Alabama, United States. At the 2010 census, the population was 30,352. According to the 2013 Census Estimates, the city had a population of 31,342. Alabaster is the 16th largest city in Alabama by number of residents.
Alabaster mostly occupies the Cahaba and Opossum Valleys, which are divided by the Pine Ridge that runs north to south. To the east and west, both valleys are flanked by parallel mountain ridges that locally run north to south, but are a part of a larger system of ridges that generally runs north-east to south-west (the tailing ends of the Appalachian foothills). The valleys are drained by small creeks (Buck Creek, Beaverdam Creek) which flow into the Cahaba River.
George L. Scott, Sr., an Alabaster pioneer, owned and operated Alabaster Lime Co. His shipping point was known as “Scott Rock.” Later, housing was built to accommodate some of the employees, and the community acquired its name Alabaster from the "white calcium carbonate mineral." The First Bank of Alabaster opened in 1952, and its president was George L. Scott, Jr., who later became the first mayor of Alabaster. The first attempt in 1952 to incorporate Alabaster failed. In January 1953, the petition was again filed, and on February 23, 1953, Alabaster was officially incorporated with a favorable vote of 79 to 23, and 427 residing inhabitants. In 1955, the Alabaster Water and Gas Board was formed.
As of the census of 2010, there were 30,352 people, 11,016 households, and 6,482 families residing in the city .The population density was 1,104.8 people per square mile (426.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 81.2% White,15.0% Black or African American, 0.31% Native American, 0.64% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 2.2% from other races, and 0.69% from two or more races. 4.54% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Find the Best Phlebotomist College near Alabaster AL
Making certain that you enroll in the right phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding health care career position. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomy training programs can be found in a variety of academic institutes, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Course options can vary somewhat from state to state as each state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must diligently screen and compare each program prior to making your final selection. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the best program for you. And with the proper training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Alabaster AL.
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