Choosing a Phlebotomy Technician School near Calabasas California
Picking the right phlebotomy training near Calabasas CA is an important first step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a daunting task to investigate and compare each of the school options that are accessible to you. However it’s vital that you perform your due diligence to make certain that you get a quality education. In reality, most students begin the process by considering 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you might consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. We’ll review a bit more about online schools later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomist training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and should be part of your decision process as well. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomist schools you are assessing to help you select the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online schools.
Phlebotomy Tech Job Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal responsibility, there is in fact much more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must confirm that the tools being utilized are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient’s data. Next, paperwork needs to be properly completed in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the lab screening 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 infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Calabasas CA area labs and are responsible for making certain that samples are analyzed correctly using the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they may be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The simplest response is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are many and varied, such as Calabasas CA medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood banks. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to seniors. Some phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood from a certain type of patient. For instance, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be drawing blood from senior patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital environment would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 kinds of programs that offer phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to complete and furnishes a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the fastest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomist. Offered at Calabasas CA community and junior colleges, they normally take 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program offer a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. Although not required in the majority of states, many Calabasas CA employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. Some of the primary certifying agencies include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP).
- American Medical Technologists (AMT).
There are some states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s important that you select a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a premium education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Schools
First, let’s dispel one likely misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant 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 completion of an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-practical component of the training may be attended online, it might be a more convenient alternative for some Calabasas CA students. As an additional benefit, some online colleges are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenditures, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomist school you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online may be the ideal option 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 might have already picked the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the college is important as well as the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an phlebotomist online school. All of these decisions are a critical component of the process for picking a program or school. But they are not the sole concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about all of the Calabasas CA colleges you are reviewing before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while some others mandate licensing. Every state has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing exam. Therefore it’s very important to choose a phlebotomist program that fulfills the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be working and preps you for any examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you pick should be accredited by a respected regional or national accrediting organization, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited school aside from a guarantee of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to take a certification examination administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are often not available for non-accredited programs. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the Calabasas CA job market.
What is the School’s Reputation? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it’s important to check the reputations of all 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 research internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can also check with some Calabasas CA clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and see if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the California school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? 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 classroom and practical. As a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should provide no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums might indicate that the Calabasas CA training program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with Calabasas CA healthcare facilities. They are the optimal way to get hands-on practical training typically not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Calabasas medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Finding your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the college has both a good reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Calabasas CA health care community.
Are Class Times Conveniently Scheduled? Finally, it’s important to make sure that the ultimate school you choose provides classes at times that are compatible with your active lifestyle. This is especially important if you choose to still work while attending school. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Calabasas CA, check that they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option as well. And if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make sure 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 Calabasas CA?
Calabasas is a city in Los Angeles County, California, United States, located in the hills west of the San Fernando Valley and in the northwest Santa Monica Mountains between Woodland Hills, Agoura Hills, West Hills, Hidden Hills, and Malibu, California. As of the 2010 census, the city's population was 23,058, up from 20,033 at the 2000 census. The city was formally incorporated in 1991.
It is generally accepted that the name of Calabasas is derived from the Spanish calabaza meaning "pumpkin", "squash", or "gourd" (cf. calabash). Some historians hold the theory that Calabasas is derived from the Chumash word calahoosa which is said to mean "where the wild geese fly." Owing to vast presence of wild squash plants in the area, the squash theory is more prevalent among local residents. At the top of the Calabasas grade, which is east of Las Virgenes Road on the original El Camino Real, legend has it that in 1824, a Basque rancher from Oxnard spilled a wagonload of pumpkins on the road en route to Los Angeles. The following spring, hundreds of pumpkin seeds sprouted alongside the road. The area was named Las Calabasas—the place where the pumpkins fell.
In honor of its namesake, the City of Calabasas and the Calabasas Chamber of Commerce hold an annual Pumpkin Festival in October, including carnival games, exhibits, demonstrations, and live entertainment. The festival has evolved from a small-town fair to a significant annual event. Though the current Pumpkin Festival is held at Juan Bautista de Anza Park in Calabasas, the original festival was believed to have taken place where the traveling wagon carrying pumpkins overturned and started the area's first pumpkin patch.
The city's official logo, depicting a red-tailed hawk flying over the Santa Monica Mountains, symbolizes a commitment to preserving the community's natural beauty and semirural quality of life. This logo is featured on the Calabasas city flag which is flown in front of City Hall and hangs in the City Council Chambers.
Select the Best Phlebotomy School near Calabasas CA
Making certain that you select the right phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this rewarding health care field. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomist training programs can be found in a variety of educational institutions, including junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive assortment of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options may differ a bit from state to state as every state has its own criteria when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must diligently screen and compare each school before making your final selection. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the best college for you. And with the proper education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Calabasas CA.
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