Selecting a Phlebotomy Technician Training Course near Ashdown Arkansas
Choosing the right phlebotomist training near Ashdown AR is an important first step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult task to assess and compare all of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s vital that you perform your due diligence to ensure that you get a superior education. In fact, 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. An additional option you may consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll review a bit more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to remember is that there is a lot more to researching phlebotomist training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and should be part of your decision process too. Toward that end, we will supply 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 conversation about online training.
Phlebotomy Technician Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their primary responsibility, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to confirm that the instruments being used are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample needs to be correctly labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork needs to be accurately filled out in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory testing 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 pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Ashdown AR area laboratories and are accountable for ensuring that samples are tested correctly utilizing the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they might be called upon to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?
The quickest answer is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are many and varied, including Ashdown AR medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be charged to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a certain type of patient. For example, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be collecting blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers solely. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would work with new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two types of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to complete and furnishes a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at Ashdown AR junior and community colleges, they normally take 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program furnish a more expansive background in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. Although not required in most states, most Ashdown AR employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. A few of the main certifying organizations include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP).
- American Medical Technologists (AMT).
There are some states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, like Nevada and California. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a premium education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Certificates and Degrees
To start with, let’s dispel one likely mistaken belief. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A good portion of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Numerous courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-clinical portion of the training may be attended online, it might be a more convenient option for some Ashdown AR students. As an added benefit, a number of online programs are more affordable than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized also. Just confirm that the online phlebotomy program you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can receive a premium education with this means of learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online might be the ideal option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Since you now have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already chosen the type of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is relevant in addition to the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an phlebotomist online college. Each of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for picking a program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are some questions that you should ask about all of the Ashdown AR colleges you are considering prior to making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to select a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Arkansas or the state where you will be working and prepares you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you select should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from an assurance of a superior education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to sit for a certification exam offered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are typically not available for non-accredited colleges. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Ashdown AR job market.
What is the School’s Ranking? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it’s important to check out the reputations of any colleges you are reviewing. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their students as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also talk to some Ashdown AR hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Arkansas school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Included? To begin with, contact 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 furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums may signify that the Ashdown AR training program is not expansive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Ask the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in partnership with Ashdown AR healthcare facilities. They are the optimal way to receive hands-on clinical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish contacts within the local Ashdown medical community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Available? Getting your first phlebotomist position will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school 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 together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Ashdown AR healthcare community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it’s crucial to verify that the final school you select offers classes at times that will accommodate your hectic lifestyle. This is especially true if you decide to still work while going to school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Ashdown AR, check that they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option also. And if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is in case you need to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Ashdown AR?
Ashdown (formerly Turkey Flats and Keller) is a city in Little River County, Arkansas, United States. The community was incorporated in 1892 and has been the county seat since 1906. Located within the Arkansas Timberlands between the Little River and the Red River, Ashdown's economy and development have historically been tied to the timber industry, a trend that continues to this day. Ashdown's population at the 2010 census was 4,723, a slight decrease from the 2000 census. The city's well-preserved history and proximity to outdoor recreation such as Millwood State Park draws tourists to the area. Although not within the Texarkana metropolitan area, the city's proximity to Texarkana impacts many areas of life in Ashdown.
Founded as a small farming community, Ashdown was initially known as Turkey Flats and later Keller before being renamed by Judge Lawrence Alexander Byrne. Following his Keller mill being "burned down to ashes", Byrne vowed to rebuild and found a town named Ashdown. It was incorporated on June 11, 1892 as Ashdown, and rapid growth began in 1895 following the railroad reaching town. The Arkansas and Choctaw Railroad connected Ashdown to Arkinda, and the growth of the Kansas City Southern Railway, the Frisco and the Memphis, Dallas and Gulf Railroad continued to grow the city and her timber industry, which had been utilizing steamboats and flatboats to ship lumber.
Following World War II, Ashdown's economy began to diversify. Its location near two rivers attracted manufacturing plants, such as Coca-Cola bottling plant, box factory, clothing plant, ice plant and a pallet plant. The United States Army Corps of Engineers dammed the Little River and Saline River at their confluence in 1966, forming Millwood Lake. The lake's recreational value attracted a Nekoosa Paper Company paper mill two years later, still in operation today after being purchased by Domtar. The Little River Memorial Hospital was also built during this period of rapid building and development.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 7.2 square miles (19 km2), of which 7.1 square miles (18.4 km²) is land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2) (0.56%) is water. Millwood Lake is located seven miles east of the town.
Find the Ideal Phlebotomy College near Ashdown AR
Making sure that you enroll in the most suitable phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding health care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs are found in a variety of educational institutes, including junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Course offerings may differ a bit from state to state as every state has its own criteria when it concerns phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must thoroughly evaluate and compare each program prior to making your ultimate selection. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the best program for you. And with the proper training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Ashdown AR.
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