Selecting a Phlebotomist Training Program near Thatcher Arizona
Picking the ideal phlebotomy training near Thatcher AZ is an essential first step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting undertaking to evaluate and compare each of the training alternatives that are accessible to you. Nevertheless it’s vital that you complete your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a quality education. In fact, most students begin the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. Another factor you may consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We’ll discuss a bit more about online classes later in this article. What’s important to remember is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomist training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and should be part of your selection process as well. 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 ideal one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online classes.
Phlebotomy Technician Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal responsibility, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must confirm that the instruments being used are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient’s data. Next, paperwork must be accurately filled out in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory testing procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers 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. Many phlebotomists in fact work in Thatcher AZ area labs and are accountable for making certain that samples are analyzed correctly using the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they can be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?
The most basic answer is wherever patients are treated. Their work places are many and diverse, including Thatcher AZ hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be assigned to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a specific type of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would only be drawing blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital environment would be collecting blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients each day.
Phlebotomy Training, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially two types of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes under a year to complete and offers a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomist. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at Thatcher AZ junior and community colleges, they typically require two years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less accessible and as a 4 year program furnish a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. While not mandated in most states, a number of Thatcher AZ employers require certification before hiring technicians. A few of the main 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 require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, such as California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s important that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a quality education, but also readies 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 likely misconception. You can’t get all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant component 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. A large number of courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-practical component of the training can be accessed online, it could be a more convenient option for many Thatcher AZ students. As an added benefit, some online colleges are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenses, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be reduced also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist school you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a quality education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then earning your degree or certificate online may be the ideal choice for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Since you now have a general idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already picked the kind of program you want 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. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an online phlebotomy program. All of these decisions are a critical component of the process for picking a program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are some questions that you need to ask about each of the Thatcher AZ schools you are looking at prior to making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed prior to working as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to select a phlebotomist program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working and preps you for all examinations you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited program 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 examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Thatcher AZ job market.
What is the College’s Reputation? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it’s essential to check out the reputations of any schools 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 reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also contact some Thatcher AZ hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Arizona school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Adequate Training Included? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the Thatcher AZ training program is not comprehensive enough to furnish sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Ask the programs you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with Thatcher AZ medical facilities. They are the optimal means to receive hands-on clinical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Thatcher healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Finding your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges you are looking at provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Thatcher AZ medical community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? And last, it’s critical to verify that the final school you choose provides classes at times that are compatible with your active lifestyle. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Thatcher AZ, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option as well. And 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 should you have to miss any classes because of illness or emergencies.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Thatcher AZ?
As of the census of 2000, there were 4,022 people, 1,281 households, and 927 families residing in the town. The population density was 919.4 people per square mile (355.4/km²). There were 1,427 housing units at an average density of 326.2 per square mile (126.1/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 84.73% White, 0.77% Black or African American, 1.84% Native American, 0.52% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 9.87% from other races, and 2.19% from two or more races. 19.54% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 1,281 households out of which 36.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 59.3% were married couples living together, 9.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 27.6% were non-families. 19.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.94 and the average family size was 3.37.
In the town, the population was spread out with 27.6% under the age of 18, 22.8% from 18 to 24, 18.9% from 25 to 44, 18.3% from 45 to 64, and 12.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 25 years. For every 100 females there were 87.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 83.5 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $32,412, and the median income for a family was $40,392. Males had a median income of $35,815 versus $20,964 for females. The per capita income for the town was $12,961. 17.2% of the population lives below the poverty line. 
Select the Right Phlebotomy College near Thatcher AZ
Making sure that you select the ideal phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomy training programs are offered in a number of educational institutes, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide array of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Program offerings may differ slightly from state to state as each state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you need to diligently screen and compare each school before making your final choice. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can select the ideal school for you. And with the proper training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Thatcher AZ.
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