Choosing a Phlebotomy Training Course near North Little Rock Arkansas
Selecting the right phlebotomy training near North Little Rock AR is a critical initial step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult task to assess and compare all of the school alternatives that are available to you. However it’s important that you do your due diligence to make certain that you obtain a superior education. In fact, many potential students begin their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. Another factor you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll talk more about online classes later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is a lot more to checking out 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 as well. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are researching to help you choose the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our conversation about online schools.
Phlebotomist Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal task, there is in fact much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork needs to be properly filled out in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory screening procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in North Little Rock AR area laboratories and are accountable for ensuring that samples are tested properly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they can be required to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The most basic response is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are many and varied, including North Little Rock AR hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to seniors. Some phlebotomy techs, based on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting blood samples from a particular type of patient. For example, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be drawing blood from older patients. If they are practicing 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 drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are primarily 2 types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to finish and provides a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest method to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will incorporate training on becoming a phlebotomy tech. Offered at North Little Rock AR junior and community colleges, they usually take 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program offer a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to be certified. Although not required in the majority of states, a number of North Little Rock AR employers require certification before hiring technicians. A few 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 several states that do call for certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, including Nevada and California. California and a handful of other states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only supplies a superior education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Certificates and Degrees
To begin with, let’s dispel one likely mistaken belief. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant part of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be conducted 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 attended online, it can be a more convenient option for many North Little Rock AR students. As an added benefit, a number of online programs are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened also. Just verify that the online phlebotomist college you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a premium education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online might be the best choice for you.
Topics to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Now that you have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already chosen the kind of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is relevant as well as the cost of tuition. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an online phlebotomist school. All of these decisions are an important component of the procedure for selecting a school or program. But they are not the only considerations when making your decision. Following are several questions that you need to ask about each of the North Little Rock AR schools you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Arkansas or the state where you will be working and readies you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a respected 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 superior education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification exam administered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to potential employers in the North Little Rock AR job market.
What is the School’s Ranking? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s imperative to check out the reputations of any colleges you are reviewing. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their students 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 even contact a few North Little Rock AR hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and see if they can provide any insights. As a closing thought, you can contact the Arkansas school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Ample Training Provided? To begin with, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums might indicate that the North Little Rock AR training program is not expansive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internships Provided? Ask the schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with North Little Rock AR health care facilities. They are the optimal way to obtain hands-on clinical training often not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local North Little Rock health care community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Available? Finding your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a higher rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the college has both an excellent reputation along with an extensive network of professional contacts within the North Little Rock AR healthcare community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? Finally, it’s important to verify that the ultimate school you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your busy lifestyle. This is especially important if you decide to still work while attending college. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near North Little Rock AR, make certain 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 study online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is in case you have to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near North Little Rock AR?
North Little Rock, Arkansas
North Little Rock is a city in Pulaski County, Arkansas, United States, across the Arkansas River from Little Rock in the central part of the state. The population was 62,304 at the 2010 census. In 2017 the estimated population was 65,911, making it the seventh-most populous city in the state. North Little Rock, along with Little Rock and Conway, anchors the six-county Little Rock–North Little Rock–Conway Metropolitan Statistical Area (2014 population 729,135), which is further included in the Little Rock-North Little Rock Combined Statistical Area with 902,443 residents.
The city's downtown is anchored in the Argenta Historic District, which draws its name from the original name of the city; the area includes Dickey-Stephens Park, the current home of the Arkansas Travelers minor league baseball team, and Verizon Arena, the metropolitan area's main entertainment venue. Farther west in the city is Burns Park, one of the largest municipal parks in the United States.
North Little Rock has a long history, dating back to the Burial Mound People. It was once known as Argenta, a name that currently applies specifically to downtown North Little Rock. In 1890, Little Rock annexed the unincorporated Argenta community as its Eighth Ward, preempting a competing petition to incorporate Argenta. A neighboring area was incorporated as the Town of North Little Rock in 1901 as part of a plan to reclaim the Eighth Ward from Little Rock. By 1904, the Arkansas Supreme Court allowed the town to annex the Eighth Ward; the modern City of North Little Rock considers this its founding date. The combined city adopted the Argenta name by 1906, but reverted to North Little Rock in October 1917. A remnant of the city's earliest years can be found in North Little Rock City Hall (constructed in 1914), which still contains plaques referring to "Argenta", and contains "C of A" (City of Argenta) ornamental designs.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 47.0 square miles (122 km2), of which 44.8 square miles (116 km2) is land and 2.2 square miles (5.7 km2) (4.58%) is water.
Select the Best Phlebotomist Course near North Little Rock AR
Making certain that you select the right phlebotomy training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding health care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomist certificate or degree programs can be available in a number of educational institutions, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive assortment of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Program offerings may vary a bit across the country as every state has its own criteria when it comes to phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to carefully research and compare each program before making your ultimate choice. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the best college for you. And with the appropriate training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in North Little Rock AR.
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