Picking a Phlebotomist Training Course near Long Beach California
Selecting the ideal phlebotomist school near Long Beach CA is an essential initial step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging undertaking to investigate and compare each of the school alternatives that are available to you. However it’s vital that you do your due diligence to make certain that you receive a superior education. In reality, many prospective students start their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional factor you might look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We’ll talk a bit more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomist training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and must 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 phlebotomist schools you are considering to help you choose the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online schools.
Phlebotomist Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. While that is their primary responsibility, there is in fact much more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must verify that the tools being utilized are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample needs to be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork has to be properly filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab testing process. The phlebotomist then transports 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. Some phlebotomists actually work in Long Beach CA area laboratories and are accountable for ensuring that samples are analyzed correctly utilizing the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they may be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The quickest answer is wherever there are patients. Their work places are numerous and varied, such as Long Beach CA hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting blood samples from a specific kind of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would only be collecting blood from senior patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital environment would be drawing blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Licensing and Certification
There are primarily 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to complete and furnishes 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, even though it’s not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Available at Long Beach CA community and junior colleges, they usually require two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program offer a more expansive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. While not required in the majority of states, a number of Long Beach CA employers look for certification before employing technicians. Some 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 some states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, including California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a premium education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomy Online Schools
To start with, let’s resolve one possible mistaken belief. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial portion of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be performed 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-clinical portion of the training can be accessed online, it might be a more convenient option for many Long Beach CA students. As an additional benefit, many online schools are more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenses, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy college you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can receive a quality education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online may be the right choice for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomy Colleges
Now that you have a basic understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You may have already selected 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 college is significant as well as the tuition expense. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an phlebotomist online program. All of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for choosing a school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you should ask about each of the Long Beach CA schools you are reviewing before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist 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 before working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may need to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it’s very important to choose a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be working and preps you for any exams you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you choose should be accredited by a highly regarded regional or national accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited school aside from a guarantee of a premium education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to take a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited programs. Last, graduating from an accredited school can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Long Beach CA job market.
What is the Program’s Ranking? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it’s essential to check out the reputations of all colleges you are looking at. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can even talk to several Long Beach CA clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and find out if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can contact the California school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been submitted or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Ample Training Provided? To begin with, contact 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. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are considering should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums might signify that the Long Beach CA training program is not expansive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with Long Beach CA healthcare facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on practical training frequently not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Long Beach healthcare community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Finding your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the programs you are looking at offer 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 program has both a good reputation together with a large network of professional contacts within the Long Beach CA healthcare community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s critical to make sure that the ultimate school you pick provides classes at times that will accommodate your hectic schedule. This is especially true if you choose to still work while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Long Beach CA, check that they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, verify 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 protocol is in case you have to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Long Beach CA?
Long Beach, California
Long Beach is a city on the Pacific Coast of the United States, within the Los Angeles metropolitan area of Southern California. As of 2010, its population was 462,257. It is the 39th most populous city in the United States and the 7th most populous in California. Long Beach is the second-largest city in the Los Angeles metropolitan area and the third largest in Southern California behind Los Angeles and San Diego. Long Beach is a charter city.
The Port of Long Beach is the second busiest container port in the United States and is among the world's largest shipping ports. The city also maintains a progressively declining oil industry with minor wells located both directly beneath the city as well as offshore. Manufacturing sectors include those in aircraft, automotive parts, electronic equipment, audiovisual equipment, petrochemicals, precision metals and home furnishings.
Long Beach lies in the southeastern corner of Los Angeles County and borders Orange County. Downtown Long Beach is approximately 22 miles (35 km) south of downtown Los Angeles, though the two cities share an official border for several miles.
Indigenous people have lived in coastal Southern California for over 10,000 years, and several successive cultures have inhabited the present-day area of Long Beach. By the 16th-century arrival of Spanish explorers, the dominant group was the Tongva people. They had at least three major settlements within the present-day city. Tevaaxa'anga was an inland settlement near the Los Angeles River, while Ahwaanga and Povuu'nga were coastal villages. Along with other Tongva villages, they were forced to relocate in the mid-19th century due to missionization, political change, and a drastic drop in population from exposure to European diseases.
Choose the Ideal Phlebotomy College near Long Beach CA
Making certain that you enroll in the ideal phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this gratifying health care field. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomy training programs are offered in a variety of educational institutions, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive assortment of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program offerings can vary slightly across the country as every state has its own prerequisites when it concerns phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must thoroughly research and compare each program before making your ultimate selection. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the right college for you. And with the proper education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Long Beach CA.
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