Choosing a Phlebotomist Training Course near Littlefield Arizona
Enrolling in the right phlebotomy technician school near Littlefield AZ is an important initial step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging task to investigate and compare all of the school alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it’s necessary that you perform your due diligence to ensure that you receive a quality education. In fact, a large number of prospective students start the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional option you may look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. We’ll review more about online schools later in this article. What’s important 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 including reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and need to be part of your selection process too. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you choose the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online classes.
Phlebotomist Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal responsibility, there is in fact much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to confirm that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient’s data. Afterward, paperwork needs to be accurately filled out in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab screening 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 pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Littlefield AZ area labs and are responsible for making sure that samples are tested properly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient responsibilities, they may be asked to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Work?
The easiest response is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are many and diverse, including Littlefield AZ medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or young children to seniors. Some phlebotomy techs, based on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting blood samples from a particular type of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be collecting blood from senior patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from new patients every day.
Phlebotomist Education, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two types of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to finish and offers a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomist. Available at Littlefield AZ community and junior colleges, they normally take 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are less accessible and as a four year program provide a more extensive background in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. While not required in the majority of states, a number of Littlefield AZ employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. Some of the main certifying agencies 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 require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, such as Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only supplies a premium education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Certificates and Degrees
To start with, let’s resolve one likely misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial part of the course of study will be practical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-clinical part of the training can be accessed online, it could be a more practical option for some Littlefield AZ students. As an added benefit, many online classes are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenditures, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered as well. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy school you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a premium education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online may be the best option for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Now that you have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the kind of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is significant as well as the cost of tuition. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an phlebotomist online program. All of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for selecting a program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Following are some questions that you should ask about each of the Littlefield AZ schools you are looking at before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Arizona? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s very important to choose a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and readies you for all examinations you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you pick should be accredited by a respected regional or national accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a superior education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification exam offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are often not available for non-accredited colleges. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Littlefield AZ job market.
What is the Program’s Ranking? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it’s essential to check the reputations of any schools you are considering. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can research online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also talk to several Littlefield AZ clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Provided? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomist 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 less than these minimums might signify that the Littlefield AZ training program is not expansive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in partnership with Littlefield AZ health care facilities. They are the optimal way to obtain hands-on practical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Littlefield medical community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Finding your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the Littlefield AZ health care community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? And last, it’s critical to confirm that the final college you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while attending college. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Littlefield AZ, make sure they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option also. And if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is should you need to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Littlefield AZ?
Littlefield is an unincorporated community and census-designated place in Mohave County located in the Arizona Strip region of the U.S. state of Arizona. As of the 2010 census, its population was 308. It lies along Interstate 15 approximately 10 miles northeast of Mesquite, Nevada. Littlefield is located in the 86432 zip code.
Littlefield and neighboring Beaver Dam have the distinction of being the only towns in Arizona along I-15. Owing to its location in the Arizona Strip, northwest of Grand Canyon National Park and west of the Virgin River, it is isolated by hundreds of miles from the rest of the state. Travel to other towns within Arizona requires crossing through either Nevada or Utah, or routing through unpaved roads to the rest of Arizona's road network.
Select the Right Phlebotomist Course near Littlefield AZ
Making certain that you select the right phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding health care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomist training programs are available in a number of educational institutions, including community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive array of programs in medical care and health sciences. Course offerings may differ somewhat across the country as each state has its own criteria when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must thoroughly screen and compare each school before making your final decision. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can select the right school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Littlefield AZ.
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