Picking a Phlebotomy Training Course near Brentwood California
Choosing the ideal phlebotomist school near Brentwood CA is a critical initial step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting undertaking to evaluate and compare all of the school options that are accessible to you. However it’s necessary that you do your due diligence to make sure that you obtain a superior education. In fact, many potential students start the process by considering two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Another factor you might look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We’ll review a bit more about online schools later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than locating the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and should be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are researching to help you choose the best one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our conversation about online training.
Phlebotomist Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their main duty, there is in fact much more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must verify that the tools being used are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork has to be correctly completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Brentwood CA area laboratories and are responsible for ensuring that samples are tested correctly utilizing the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they can be asked to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The simplest response is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are numerous and varied, including Brentwood CA hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They can be charged to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomy techs, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a specific kind of patient. For example, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomists working in a general hospital environment would be drawing blood from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients each day.
Phlebotomy Training, Licensing and Certification
There are basically two types of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to complete and offers a general education together 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 phlebotomist degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at Brentwood CA community and junior colleges, they usually require two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a four year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. After you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. While not mandated in most states, most Brentwood CA employers require certification before hiring 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 some states that do require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, such as California and Nevada. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it’s important that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a premium education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomy Colleges
To start with, let’s resolve one possible misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A good part of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be performed either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-clinical component of the training may be attended online, it can be a more practical option for some Brentwood CA students. As an additional benefit, some online programs are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some expenditures, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be lessened 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 extensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a premium education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online might be the ideal choice for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Since you now have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already decided on the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school is relevant in addition to the tuition expense. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an online phlebotomy college. All of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for choosing a program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Following are several questions that you need to ask about all of the Brentwood CA schools you are considering before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while some 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 may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that fulfills the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be working and preps you for all examinations you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you pick should be accredited by a reputable regional or national accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a superior education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are typically not available for non-accredited schools. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Brentwood CA job market.
What is the Program’s Reputation? In a number of states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it’s imperative to check out the reputations of any colleges you are considering. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also contact several Brentwood CA hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the California school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Ample Training Provided? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are reviewing should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums might indicate that the Brentwood CA training program is not expansive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in partnership with Brentwood CA healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on practical training frequently not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Brentwood medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Finding your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the schools you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the school has both a good reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Brentwood CA medical community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? Finally, it’s critical to verify that the ultimate school you choose provides classes at times that will accommodate your active schedule. This is particularly true if you choose to continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Brentwood CA, check that they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is in case you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Brentwood CA?
Brentwood is a city in Contra Costa County, California, United States. It is located in the East Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area. The population is 51,481 as of 2010, an increase of 121 percent from 23,302 at the 2000 census.
Brentwood began as a community in the late 19th century, and still is known throughout the Bay Area for its agricultural products, primarily its cherries, corn and peaches. Due to urban sprawl many of the old farms and orchards have been replaced by suburban developments since 1990. Brentwood is increasingly residential, with the rate of population growth in the triple digits during the 1990s and 69% from 2000 through 2005.
Brentwood was originally laid out on land donated from property owned by John Marsh, an East Contra Costa County pioneer who acquired Rancho Los Meganos, the land grant that Brentwood is built upon, in 1837 from Jose Noriega. Marsh was one of the wealthiest men in California and was instrumental in its becoming independent from Mexico and part of the United States. His letters extolling the potential for agriculture in California were published in newspapers throughout the East. They resulted in the first wagon trains to California. Marsh encouraged this, and allowed new arrivals to stay on his ranch until they could get settled. Rancho Los Meganos became the terminus of the California Trail. Brentwood was named after Marsh's ancestral home, the town of Brentwood in the County of Essex, England.
Balfour, Guthrie & Co., a British investment company, purchased the John Marsh ranch in 1910. The company invested heavily in other California agricultural properties as well. In 1910, it built the Brentwood Hotel at Oak Street and Brentwood Boulevard, across from the railroad station. This replaced an earlier hotel on the same site that had burned down in 1903. The hotel was razed in 1967, and replaced by a service station.
Enroll in the Right Phlebotomist Training Program near Brentwood CA
Making certain that you enroll in the right phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this fulfilling health care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are found in a wide range of educational institutions, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Training program offerings can vary slightly across the country as each state has its own criteria when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must carefully evaluate and compare each school prior to making your final choice. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the ideal school for you. And with the appropriate training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Brentwood CA.
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