Picking a Phlebotomist Training Course near Lawrence Kansas
Selecting the right phlebotomist training near Lawrence KS is an important first step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a difficult task to analyze and compare each of the training alternatives that are available to you. However it’s necessary that you complete your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a quality education. In reality, a large number of potential students start the process by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional factor you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We’ll discuss more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to researching phlebotomist training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and should be part of your decision process also. Toward that end, we will supply a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomist schools you are evaluating to help you select the ideal one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our discussion about online schools.
Phlebotomy Technician Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their main task, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the tools being used are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample must be properly labeled with the patient’s data. Afterward, paperwork needs to be correctly completed in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it may be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Lawrence KS area laboratories and are responsible for ensuring that samples are tested correctly utilizing the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they might be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The simplest answer is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are many and diverse, such as Lawrence KS medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They may be charged to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing blood samples from a certain kind of patient. For instance, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would solely be drawing blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients every day.
Phlebotomy Education, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially two types of programs that furnish phlebotomist training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program normally takes less than a year to finish and furnishes a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest means to becoming a phlebotomist. 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 Lawrence KS community and junior colleges, they usually take 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a four year program furnish a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. While not mandated in most states, many Lawrence KS employers require certification prior to employing technicians. A few of the principal 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 require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, such as California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you choose a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a premium education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomy Colleges
First, let’s dispel one possible misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant component of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be carried out either in an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-practical part of the training may be attended online, it might be a more convenient alternative for many Lawrence KS students. As an added benefit, a number of online programs are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenditures, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomist school you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can receive a premium education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online may be the best option for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Now that you have a basic understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the campus is significant in addition to the cost of tuition. Maybe you have opted to enroll in an online phlebotomy program. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the process for selecting a school or program. But they are not the only considerations when making your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about all of the Lawrence KS colleges you are reviewing before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Kansas? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements 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 completed before practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s very important to choose a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Kansas or the state where you will be practicing and readies you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you select should be accredited by a recognized 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 program aside from a guarantee of a premium education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to sit for a certification exam administered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are typically not available for non-accredited colleges. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Lawrence KS job market.
What is the School’s Ranking? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s important to check the reputations of all schools you are reviewing. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen internet school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also check with some Lawrence KS hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and see if they can offer any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the Kansas school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? To begin with, contact the state regulator where you will be working 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 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 Lawrence KS training program is not comprehensive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask the schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with Lawrence KS medical facilities. They are the optimal way to obtain hands-on practical training often not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local Lawrence medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Finding your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a high rate, meaning they place most of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the program has both an excellent reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Lawrence KS health care community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it’s important to confirm that the final college you pick provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is especially true if you choose to continue working while attending college. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Lawrence KS, check that they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm it is an option also. Even if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up policy is should you have to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Lawrence KS?
Lawrence is the county seat of Douglas County and sixth largest city in Kansas. It is located in the northeastern sector of the state, next to Interstate 70, between the Kansas and Wakarusa Rivers. As of the 2010 census, the city's population was 87,643. Lawrence is a college town and the home to both the University of Kansas and Haskell Indian Nations University.
Lawrence was founded by the New England Emigrant Aid Company and was named for Amos Adams Lawrence who offered financial aid and support for the settlement. Lawrence was central to the "Bleeding Kansas" period and was the site of the Wakarusa War (1855) and the Sack of Lawrence (1856). During the American Civil War (1861–65), it was also the site of the Lawrence Massacre (1863).
Lawrence began as a center of free-state politics. However, its economy soon diversified into many industries, including agriculture, manufacturing, and ultimately education, beginning with the founding of the University of Kansas in 1866, and later Haskell Indian Nations University in 1884.
Prior to Kansas Territory being established in May 1854, most of Douglas County was part of the Shawnee Indian Reservation. At this time, the Oregon Trail ran parallel to the Kansas River roughly through the area where Lawrence would eventually be situated, and a hill known then as "Hogback Ridge" (i.e. Mount Oread, which sat on the water divide that separated the Kansas and Wakarusa Rivers), was used as a landmark and an outlook by those on the trail.
Find the Right Phlebotomist Course near Lawrence KS
Making certain that you choose the right 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 contribute toward the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomist training programs are found in a wide range of academic institutes, such as community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide assortment of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options can differ somewhat across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must thoroughly screen and compare each school before making your ultimate decision. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the ideal school for you. And with the proper education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Lawrence KS.
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