Picking a Phlebotomy Training Program near Wilmerding Pennsylvania
Selecting the right phlebotomy training near Wilmerding PA is an essential first step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult task to assess and compare all of the school options that are accessible to you. However it’s necessary that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you receive a quality education. In reality, many prospective students begin the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another factor you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We’ll discuss more about online classes later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to researching phlebotomist training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors including accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and must be part of your selection process also. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomist schools you are evaluating to help you select the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our discussion about online training.
Phlebotomist Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their main responsibility, there is actually much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to verify that the tools being employed are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient’s data. Afterward, paperwork has to be properly completed 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 screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists in fact work in Wilmerding PA area labs and are in charge of making certain that samples are tested properly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they can be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomists Employed?
The most basic answer is wherever they treat patients. Their work environments are many and varied, such as Wilmerding PA medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They can be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or young children to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing blood from a particular type 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 exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically 2 kinds of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to complete and furnishes a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomy tech. Available at Wilmerding PA junior and community colleges, they typically take two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program offer a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. While not required in most states, many Wilmerding PA employers require certification prior to hiring technicians. A few 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 several states that do require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, like California and Nevada. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomy Classes
To start with, let’s dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can’t get all of your phlebotomy training online. A good portion of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. A large number of courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-clinical portion of the training can be accessed online, it can be a more practical alternative for many Wilmerding PA students. As an added benefit, a number of online classes are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some costs, for instance those for commuting or textbooks, may be lessened also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a quality education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the ideal option for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Now that you have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already selected the kind of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school is important as well as the cost of tuition. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an phlebotomy online college. All of these decisions are an important part of the process for picking a program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you should ask about each of the Wilmerding PA colleges you are considering before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to select a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Pennsylvania or the state where you will be working and preps you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you choose should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional 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 an assurance of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to sit for a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to future employers in the Wilmerding PA job market.
What is the Program’s Ranking? In a number of states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So in addition to accreditation, it’s essential to check out the reputations of all schools you are looking at. You can start 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 reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also talk to some Wilmerding PA hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and find out if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Pennsylvania school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Adequate Training Included? 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 considering should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums might signify that the Wilmerding PA training program is not comprehensive enough to offer adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with Wilmerding PA health care facilities. They are the ideal means to get hands-on clinical training frequently not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students establish relationships within the local Wilmerding medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Finding your first phlebotomist job will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the schools you are reviewing provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the school has both a good reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Wilmerding PA medical community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? Finally, it’s critical to confirm that the ultimate school you select offers classes at times that are compatible with your busy lifestyle. This is particularly important if you opt to still work while attending school. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Wilmerding PA, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option as well. And 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 need to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Wilmerding PA?
Wilmerding is a borough in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 2,190 at the 2010 census. It is located 12 miles (19 km) southeast of Pittsburgh. At the start of the twentieth century, it had extensive foundries and machine shops of the Westinghouse Air Brake Company. Wilmerding is adjacent to the borough of Turtle Creek, which takes its name from a small stream that flows past both places.
George Westinghouse purchased land in the Turtle Creek valley in 1887 and 1888 as a site for his Westinghouse Air Brake Company and related facilities. Westinghouse then sold the land to the East Pittsburgh Improvement Company, incorporated in December 1888, to develop the site, and it began the sale of lots in June 1889.
Wilmerding's most notable historic structure is the Westinghouse Air Brake Company General Office Building (1889–1890, rebuilt 1896), designed by Frederick J. Osterling and now listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Wilmerding has five borders, including Monroeville to the northeast, Wall to the east, East McKeesport to the south, North Versailles Township to the southwest, and Turtle Creek (via Greensburg Pike/Lincoln Highway Bridge) to the northwest.
Find the Right Phlebotomy Training Program near Wilmerding PA
Making sure that you enroll in the ideal phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium college. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are offered in a variety of academic institutes, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide assortment of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Course options can vary slightly across the country as every state has its own mandates when it comes to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you need to diligently evaluate and compare each program before making your final choice. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the right program for you. And with the proper education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Wilmerding PA.
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