Selecting a Phlebotomy School near Fair Oaks California
Choosing the ideal phlebotomy technician training near Fair Oaks CA is an essential initial step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging task to evaluate and compare all of the school alternatives that are accessible to you. However it’s vital that you perform your due diligence to make certain that you receive a quality education. In fact, a large number of potential students start their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Yet another factor you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll discuss more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomist training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process also. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomist schools you are reviewing to help you choose the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our discussion about online training.
Phlebotomy Technician Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their primary duty, there is in fact far more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must confirm that the tools being utilized are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork needs to be correctly filled out in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab screening procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Many phlebotomists in fact work in Fair Oaks CA area laboratories and are accountable for making certain that samples are tested properly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they can be called upon to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The quickest answer is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are many and diverse, such as Fair Oaks CA medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or young children to senior citizens. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting blood samples from a particular type of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Education, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily two types of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to finish and offers a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomist. Available at Fair Oaks CA community and junior colleges, they usually take 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a four year program offer a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. While not required in most states, most Fair Oaks CA employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. A few 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 prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, like Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it’s important that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a quality education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Schools
First, let’s dispel one potential misconception. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant part of the course of study will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Many courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical portion of the training can be attended online, it may be a more convenient alternative for many Fair Oaks CA students. As an additional benefit, a number of online schools are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenses, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced also. Just confirm that the online phlebotomy college 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 means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online might be the best choice for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Now that you have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You may have already chosen the kind of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is important as well as the tuition expense. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an online phlebotomy school. Each of these decisions are an important part of the process for choosing a program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you need to ask about all of the Fair Oaks CA schools you are looking at before making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed prior to working 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 fulfills the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you choose should be accredited by a respected regional or national accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are often not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Fair Oaks CA job market.
What is the Program’s Ranking? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it’s essential to check the reputations of all schools you are reviewing. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can research internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also contact several Fair Oaks CA hospitals or clinics that you might have an interest in working for and see if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the California school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Ample Training Included? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the Fair Oaks CA training program is not expansive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask the schools you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with Fair Oaks CA health care facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on practical training often not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Fair Oaks medical community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Landing your first phlebotomy position will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the college has both a good reputation as well as a substantial network of professional contacts within the Fair Oaks CA healthcare community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? And last, it’s important to make sure that the ultimate school you pick provides classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while attending college. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Fair Oaks CA, check that they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option also. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is should you have to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Fair Oaks CA?
Fair Oaks, California
Fair Oaks is a census-designated place (CDP) in Sacramento County, California, United States. It is part of the Sacramento–Arden-Arcade–Roseville Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 30,912 at the 2010 census, up from 28,008 at the 2000 census. The Fair Oaks zip code is 95628 and its area code is 916.
Fair Oaks is bounded on the south side by the American River, and Rancho Cordova, on the north side by the city of Citrus Heights, on the west side by Carmichael, and the east side by Orangevale and Folsom. Fair Oaks has a mix of suburban and semi-rural neighborhoods.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 11.2 square miles (29 km2), of which, 10.8 square miles (28 km2) of it is land and 0.5 square miles (1.3 km2) of it (4.02%) is water.
Fair Oaks has a hot-summer Mediterranean climate (Köppen Csa), characterized by damp to wet, mild winters and hot, dry summers. The wet season is generally October through April, though there may be a day or two of light rainfall in June or September. The normal annual mean temperature is 61.0 °F (16.1 °C), with the monthly daily average temperature ranging from 46.4 °F (8.0 °C) in December to 75.5 °F (24.2 °C) in July. Summer heat is often moderated by a sea breeze known as the "delta breeze" which comes through the Sacramento–San Joaquin River Delta from the San Francisco Bay, and temperatures cool down sharply at night.
Select the Ideal Phlebotomist School near Fair Oaks CA
Making certain that you enroll in the ideal phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding medical care field. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomy training programs are offered in a wide range of academic institutions, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide assortment of programs in medical care and health sciences. Course options may differ slightly from state to state as every state has its own mandates when it comes to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to carefully evaluate and compare each school before making your final choice. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the right school for you. And with the appropriate training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Fair Oaks CA.
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