Selecting a Phlebotomy Training Program near Lake Charles Louisiana
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomist school near Lake Charles LA is an essential first step toward a gratifying career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a challenging task to evaluate and compare all of the school alternatives that are available to you. However it’s necessary that you complete your due diligence to ensure that you obtain a superior education. In fact, a large number of students begin their search by considering two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional factor you may look into 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’s important to remember is that there is a lot more to researching phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and must be part of your selection process as well. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are researching 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 discussion about online training.
Phlebotomy Technician Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their main responsibility, there is actually much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to check that the instruments being employed are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient’s data. Afterward, paperwork needs to be accurately completed in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory screening procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Lake Charles LA area labs and are in charge of ensuring that samples are analyzed correctly under the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they may be asked to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomy Techs Employed?
The simplest response is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are numerous and diverse, such as Lake Charles LA medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood centers. They can be charged to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing blood from a certain type of patient. For example, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would exclusively be drawing blood from senior patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital environment would be collecting blood from a wide variety of patients and would work with new patients each day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially 2 kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program generally takes under a year to complete and furnishes a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides 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 Lake Charles LA community and junior colleges, they usually take 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a four year program provide a more extensive background in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will probably want to be certified. While not required in most states, many Lake Charles LA employers require certification prior to hiring technicians. A few of the key 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, such as Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you select a phlebotomist training program that not only furnishes a quality education, but also prepares you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomy Classes
First, let’s dispel one potential misconception. You can’t get all of your phlebotomy training online. A good part of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. A large number of courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-clinical component of the training can be attended online, it could be a more convenient option for some Lake Charles LA students. As an added benefit, some online programs are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some expenditures, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist program you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online might be the ideal option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Now that you have a general understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You may 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 campus is relevant in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an phlebotomist online college. All of these decisions are an important component of the process for selecting a school or program. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Following are some questions that you should ask about each of the Lake Charles LA colleges you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Louisiana? As earlier discussed, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. Consequently, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s very important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that meets the state specific requirements for Louisiana or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you enroll in should be accredited by a reputable regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a superior education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to sit for a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are often unavailable for non-accredited schools. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more desirable to potential employers in the Lake Charles LA 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 in addition to accreditation, it’s imperative to investigate the reputations of all schools you are considering. You can begin by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can research online school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also contact several Lake Charles LA clinics or hospitals that you may have an interest in working for and see if they can offer any recommendations. As a final thought, you can contact the Louisiana school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been filed or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Provided? First, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to find out 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 at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything below these minimums might indicate that the Lake Charles LA training program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internships Included? Find out from the colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with Lake Charles LA health care facilities. They are the optimal means to receive hands-on practical training typically not available on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Lake Charles medical community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Landing your first phlebotomy position will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a higher rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the school has both an excellent reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Lake Charles LA medical community.
Are Class Times Compatible With Your Schedule? And last, it’s important to make sure that the ultimate school you pick offers classes at times that are compatible with your active lifestyle. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Lake Charles LA, make sure they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, 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 find out what the make-up protocol is should you have to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Lake Charles LA?
Lake Charles, Louisiana
Lake Charles (French: Lac Charles) is the fifth-largest incorporated city in the U.S. state of Louisiana, located on Lake Charles, Prien Lake, and the Calcasieu River. Founded in 1861 in Calcasieu Parish, it is a major industrial, cultural, and educational center in the southwest region of the state.
As of the 2010 census, the population was 71,993. Lake Charles is the principal city of the Lake Charles Metropolitan Statistical Area, having a population of 202,040. It is the larger principal city of the Lake Charles-Jennings Combined Statistical Area, with a population of 225,235. The 2010 population of the five-parish area of Southwest Louisiana was 292,619.
It is considered a regionally significant center of petrochemical refining, gaming, tourism, and education, being home to McNeese State University and Sowela Technical Community College. Because of the lakes and waterways throughout the city, metropolitan Lake Charles is often referred to as the Lake Area.
On March 7, 1861, Lake Charles was officially incorporated as the town of Charleston, Louisiana. Lake Charles was originally founded by merchant and tradesmen Marco Eliche (or Marco de Élitxe) as an outpost —- a Sephardic Jewish trader of either Basque-Spanish or Venetian-Italian origins. He had arrived to Louisiana after hitchhiking and was invited onto a Spanish vessel due to his determination and loyalty to volunteer and work freely for the Spanish Empire. Long before incorporation and even before the Louisiana Purchase, other names for Lake Charles were known as Porte du Lafitte (Port of Jean Lafitte) or Rivière Lafitte (River Lafitte/Lafitte's River); among many other names now lost. Eliche had also founded other outposts and towns in Louisiana prior; most notably (Marksville) - which is honorarily named after him. There are also urban tales he had planned to name the settlement Nouveau Cadix (New Cádiz)", after the city in Spain - but this is uncertain.
Find the Right Phlebotomist Training Program near Lake Charles LA
Making sure that you enroll in the ideal phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a premium program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are found in a number of academic institutions, including community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide range of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program offerings may differ somewhat from state to state as each state has its own criteria when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you need to thoroughly evaluate and compare each program prior to making your ultimate choice. By addressing the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the ideal college for you. And with the appropriate education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Lake Charles LA.
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