Choosing a Phlebotomy Training Course near Van Buren Arkansas
Selecting the ideal phlebotomy technician training near Van Buren AR is a critical first step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting undertaking to investigate and compare all of the training options that are available to you. However it’s important that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you get a superior education. In reality, a large number of potential students begin the process by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you may look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We’ll review more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to remember is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomist training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors such as accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process too. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomist schools you are reviewing to help you select the best one for you. But before we do that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online training.
Phlebotomist Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, draws blood from patients. Although that is their main duty, there is in fact much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to check that the tools being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample has to be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork needs to be accurately completed to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab testing procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Van Buren AR area labs and are in charge of making certain that samples are tested correctly utilizing the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they might be required to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The simplest answer is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are numerous and varied, including Van Buren AR medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood samples from a specific type of patient. For example, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would solely 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 drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially two types of programs that provide phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to finish and furnishes a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomist. Offered at Van Buren AR community and junior colleges, they usually require two years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a 4 year program furnish a more expansive background in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to become certified. Although not required in the majority of states, many Van Buren AR employers require certification before employing technicians. Some of the main certifying agencies 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 in order to practice as a phlebotomist, such as Nevada and California. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you pick a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a superior education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomist Online Colleges
First, let’s dispel one potential misconception. You can’t get all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial part of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-practical portion of the training may be accessed online, it may be a more practical alternative for some Van Buren AR students. As an added benefit, many online programs are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenses, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy program you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a premium education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online may be the ideal choice for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Now that you have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already chosen the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the school is relevant as well as the cost of tuition. Possibly you have decided to enroll in an online phlebotomist program. All of these decisions are a critical part of the procedure for picking a school or program. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you should ask about each of the Van Buren AR programs you are considering prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As mentioned previously, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed prior to working as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to select a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Arkansas or the state where you will be working and preps you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you select should be accredited by a recognized regional or national accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a superior education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining loans or financial assistance, which are typically not available for non-accredited schools. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Van Buren AR job market.
What is the School’s Reputation? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it’s essential to check out the reputations of any schools you are looking at. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also contact a few Van Buren AR clinics or hospitals that you might be interested in working for and find out if they can offer any insights. As a final thought, you can contact the Arkansas school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Ample Training Included? First, check with the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are considering should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything below these minimums may signify that the Van Buren AR training program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internships Provided? Ask the programs you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with Van Buren AR health care facilities. They are the ideal means to obtain hands-on practical training often not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Van Buren healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Finding your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Van Buren AR healthcare community.
Are Classes Conveniently Scheduled? Finally, it’s crucial to verify that the ultimate school you pick offers classes at times that are compatible with your active lifestyle. This is particularly important if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Van Buren AR, check that they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is in case you need to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Van Buren AR?
Van Buren, Arkansas
Van Buren /væn ˈbjʊərən/ is the second largest city in the Fort Smith, Arkansas-Oklahoma Metropolitan Statistical Area and the county seat of Crawford County, Arkansas, United States. The city is located directly northeast of Fort Smith at the Interstate 40 - Interstate 540 junction. The city was incorporated in 1845 and as of the 2010 census had a population of 22,791, ranking it as the state's 22nd largest city, behind Searcy.
The area was settled by David Boyd and Thomas Martin in 1818. After Arkansas became a territory in 1819 Daniel and Thomas Phillips constructed a lumber yard in the community to serve as a fuel depot for traffic along the Arkansas River. In 1831 a post office was constructed for the community, at the time known as Phillips Landing. This post office was named after the newly appointed Secretary of State, Martin Van Buren.
John Drennen, along with his partner David Thompson, purchased the area for US$11,000. They moved their business of supplying firewood for steamboats to this new location on higher ground. The courthouse was constructed on a lot of land donated by Drennen on the condition that Van Buren become the county seat. The Drennen Reserve is one of the town's existing historical sites from the 1830s.
On December 28, 1862, Union and Confederate forces clashed in and around Van Buren resulting in a defeat for Major-General T. C. Hindman, driving him south across the river with minimal casualties. Federal forces captured 100 prisoners, as stated in an official report by U.S. Major-General Samuel R. Curtis.
Choose the Right Phlebotomy Training Program near Van Buren AR
Making sure that you choose the most suitable phlebotomy training is an essential first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare field. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are available in a wide range of academic institutions, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide assortment of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Program options can vary a bit from state to state as every state has its own prerequisites when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to carefully screen and compare each program prior to making your final decision. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the best school for you. And with the appropriate training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Van Buren AR.
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