Selecting a Phlebotomy Technician School near Fresno California
Picking the right phlebotomy technician school near Fresno CA is an important first step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting undertaking to assess and compare each of the school options that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s vital that you perform your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a superior education. In fact, many potential students start the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional factor you may consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We’ll discuss 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 finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and need to be part of your decision process as well. Toward that end, we will supply a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomist schools you are considering to help you choose the best one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our conversation about online training.
Phlebotomy Tech Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. Although that is their main responsibility, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to verify that the instruments being used are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample must be correctly labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork must be properly completed to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Fresno CA area laboratories and are accountable for making sure that samples are tested correctly utilizing the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they may be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The most basic response is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are numerous and diverse, such as Fresno CA medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a particular type of patient. For instance, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would solely be drawing blood from older 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 drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially two types of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to complete and furnishes a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomy tech. Available at Fresno CA junior and community colleges, they normally take 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are less accessible and as a 4 year program offer a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. Although not required in most states, a number of Fresno CA employers require certification prior to employing technicians. Some of the principal 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 call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, such as Nevada and California. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a quality education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomy Online Training
To begin with, let’s resolve one possible misconception. You can’t get all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial portion of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be performed either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-practical portion of the training may be accessed online, it can be a more practical option for many Fresno CA students. As an added benefit, some online schools are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenditures, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist school you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive 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 earning your degree or certificate online may be the right option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Now that you have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already picked the kind of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the college is important in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an phlebotomist online college. All of these decisions are an important part of the process for picking a school or program. But they are not the only considerations when making your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you should ask about each of the Fresno CA colleges you are considering prior to making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to California? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states call for certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed prior to working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s very important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a recognized regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited school in addition to an assurance of a quality education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more desirable to future employers in the Fresno CA job market.
What is the College’s Ranking? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s imperative to investigate the reputations of any colleges you are reviewing. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they refer their students as part of their job assistance program. You can research online school rating and review services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also contact some Fresno CA clinics or hospitals that you may 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 colleges are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Included? First, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are considering should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums might indicate that the Fresno CA training program is not expansive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internships Provided? Find out from the programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with Fresno CA health care facilities. They are the ideal means to receive hands-on practical training typically not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Fresno healthcare community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Landing your first phlebotomist job will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Inquire if the schools you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place most of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the school has both a good reputation together with a large network of professional contacts within the Fresno CA healthcare community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s important to verify that the ultimate school you pick provides classes at times that are compatible with your active schedule. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Fresno CA, make certain they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option also. Even if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is should you need to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Fresno CA?
Fresno (/ˈfrɛznoʊ/ FREZ-no (Spanish for "ash tree") is a city in California, United States, and the county seat of Fresno County. It covers about 112 square miles (290 km2) in the center of the San Joaquin Valley, the southern portion of the California's Central Valley.
Named for the abundant ash trees lining the San Joaquin River, Fresno was founded in 1872 as a railway station of the Central Pacific Railroad before it was incorporated in 1885. The city has since become an economic hub of Fresno County and the San Joaquin Valley, with much of the surrounding areas in the Metropolitan Fresno region predominantly tied to large-scale agricultural production.
The population of Fresno grew from a 1960 census population of 134,000 to a 2000 census population of 428,000. With a census-estimated 2016 population of 520,159, Fresno is the fifth-most populous city in California, the most populous city in the Central Valley, the most populous inland city in California, and the 34th-most populous city in the nation.
Fresno is near the geographical center of California. It lies approximately 220 miles (350 km) north of Los Angeles, 170 miles (270 km) south of the state capital, Sacramento, and 185 miles (300 km) southeast of San Francisco. Yosemite National Park is about 60 miles (100 km) to the north, Kings Canyon National Park is 60 miles (100 km) to the east, and Sequoia National Park is 75 miles (120 km) to the southeast.
Select the Ideal Phlebotomist Course near Fresno CA
Making sure that you select the ideal phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this gratifying health care career position. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a quality school. Phlebotomist training programs are found in a variety of academic institutes, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide an extensive range of courses in medical care and health sciences. Training program offerings may vary slightly across the country as every state has its own mandates when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you need to thoroughly screen and compare each college prior to making your final decision. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the ideal school for you. And with the appropriate training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Fresno CA.
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