Picking a Phlebotomy Technician Training Program near Triangle Virginia
Selecting the ideal phlebotomy training near Triangle VA is an essential first step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging undertaking to evaluate and compare all of the school options that are available to you. However it’s vital that you perform your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a superior education. In reality, most students begin the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. Yet another factor you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We’ll review a bit more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomist training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and must be part of your decision process too. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomist schools you are researching to help you pick the best one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online training.
Phlebotomy Tech Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. While that is their main task, there is in fact far more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to verify that the instruments being utilized are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample needs to be correctly labeled with the patient’s data. Next, paperwork has to be accurately filled out in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Triangle VA area laboratories and are in charge of making certain that samples are analyzed correctly using the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they may be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The most basic answer is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are many and varied, such as Triangle VA medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or young children to seniors. 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 practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be collecting blood from senior patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers solely. 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 new patients each day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Certification and Licensing
There are basically 2 kinds of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes less than a year to finish and offers a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomist. Available at Triangle VA junior and community colleges, they normally require 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less accessible and as a four year program provide a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will probably want to be certified. While not required in most states, a number of Triangle VA employers look for certification before employing technicians. Some of the key 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 phlebotomist, such as California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only furnishes a superior education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing exams that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomist Online Schools
First, let’s resolve one possible mistaken belief. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A good portion of the program of studies will be clinical 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 part of the training may be accessed online, it may be a more practical alternative for many Triangle VA students. As an added benefit, a number of online programs are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist program you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can receive a premium education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online may 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 phlebotomy tech, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already picked the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the school is significant as well as the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an online phlebotomist school. All of these decisions are a critical component of the process for choosing a program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Following are a few questions that you need to ask about each of the Triangle VA programs you are reviewing before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Virginia? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed before working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to choose a phlebotomist program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Virginia or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you select should be accredited by a reputable national or regional 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 aside from a guarantee of a quality education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are typically not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the Triangle VA job market.
What is the Program’s Ranking? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it’s important to check out the reputations of any colleges you are considering. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can even talk to a few Triangle VA hospitals or clinics that you may be interested in working for and find out if they can offer any recommendations. As a final thought, you can contact the Virginia school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been submitted or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Ample Training Included? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. At a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are looking at should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the Triangle VA training program is not comprehensive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the colleges you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with Triangle VA medical facilities. They are the optimal means to receive hands-on practical training typically not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Triangle healthcare community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Landing your first phlebotomist position will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the college has both a good reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Triangle VA medical community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? And last, it’s crucial to verify that the final program you select offers classes at times that will accommodate your active schedule. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while attending college. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Triangle VA, check that they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option also. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is should you need to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Triangle VA?
Triangle is a census-designated place (CDP) in Prince William County, Virginia, United States. The population was 8,188 at the 2010 census. It is bounded to the south by the Marine Corps Base Quantico, which surrounds the town of Quantico.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 2.6 square miles (6.8 km²), all of it land. It is bounded to the north and west by the town of Dumfries. It is bounded to the west by Prince William Forest Park and to the east by the Potomac River.
As of the census of 2000, there were 5,500 people, 2,196 households, and 1,341 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 2,088.5 people per square mile (807.4/km²). There were 2,318 housing units at an average density of 880.2/sq mi (340.3/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 61.07% White, 28.33% African American, 0.49% Native American, 2.87% Asian, 0.11% Pacific Islander, 3.58% from other races, and 3.55% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 7.42% of the population.
There were 2,196 households out of which 33.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 40.4% were married couples living together, 15.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 38.9% were non-families. 29.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 3.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.50 and the average family size was 3.13.
Select the Best Phlebotomist College near Triangle VA
Making certain that you enroll in the right phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that go into the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are available in a wide range of academic institutes, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide array of courses in medical care and health sciences. Program offerings may differ somewhat across the country as every state has its own mandates when it comes to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must thoroughly research and compare each school prior to making your ultimate decision. By addressing the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the ideal program for you. And with the proper education, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Triangle VA.
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