Selecting a Phlebotomist Training Course near Blountsville Alabama
Selecting the right phlebotomist training near Blountsville AL is a critical first step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a difficult undertaking to evaluate and compare all of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s necessary that you do your due diligence to ensure that you receive a superior education. In reality, many potential students start the process by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional option you may look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We’ll talk a bit more about online classes later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is much more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other factors including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and need to be part of your selection process as well. To assist in that effort, we will furnish a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you select the best one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our conversation about online training.
Phlebotomy Tech Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their primary function, there is in fact much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist needs to verify that the tools being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample has to be correctly labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork needs to be accurately filled out to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab screening process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be screened for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of phlebotomists actually work in Blountsville AL area laboratories and are in charge of making sure that samples are analyzed correctly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient responsibilities, they can be asked to instruct other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomists Employed?
The quickest response is wherever patients are treated. Their workplaces are many and varied, such as Blountsville AL hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood banks. They may be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing blood from a certain type of patient. For example, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be collecting blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital environment would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with new patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomist Training, Certification and Licensing
There are primarily 2 types of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to complete and offers a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest 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 phlebotomist. Available at Blountsville AL junior and community colleges, they normally require two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a 4 year program furnish a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will probably want to get certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, many Blountsville AL employers look for certification before hiring technicians. Some 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 several states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomy tech, like Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it’s important that you choose a phlebotomy training program that not only supplies a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomy Online Schools
To begin with, let’s dispel one likely misconception. You can’t get all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial portion of the course of study will be practical training and it will be carried out 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 portion of the training may be accessed online, it could be a more convenient alternative for some Blountsville AL students. As an added benefit, a number of online schools are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some costs, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be lessened as well. Just verify that the online phlebotomist program you enroll in is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a superior education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online might be the ideal option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Now that you have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You might have already chosen the type of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the college is significant as well as the tuition expense. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an online phlebotomist school. Each of these decisions are an important component of the process for selecting a school or program. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Following are a few questions that you need to ask about each of the Blountsville AL schools you are looking at before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states require certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed before working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and readies you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a quality 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. Also, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. Last, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to potential employers in the Blountsville AL job market.
What is the School’s Ranking? 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 imperative to investigate 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 online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can also check with a few Blountsville AL hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Included? First, contact 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. At a minimum, any phlebotomist 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 lower than these minimums may indicate that the Blountsville AL training program is not comprehensive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internships Sponsored? Ask the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with Blountsville AL healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to get hands-on clinical training frequently not provided on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Blountsville healthcare community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the school has both a good reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Blountsville AL healthcare community.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? And last, it’s important to make sure that the ultimate school you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is particularly true if you choose to still work while attending college. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Blountsville AL, make sure they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option also. And if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And ask what the make-up protocol is in case you have to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Blountsville AL?
Blount County was created by the Alabama territorial legislature on February 6, 1818, from land ceded to the federal government by the Creek Nation on August 9, 1814. It was named for Gov. Willie G. Blount of Tennessee, who provided assistance to settlers in Alabama during the Creek War of 1813-14. It lies in the northeastern section of the state, generally known as the mineral region.
What became Blountsville appears on an 1819 map as the mixed Creek/Cherokee Native American village of "Wassausey" (meaning Bear Meat Cabin, the name of an Indian translator who lived there). The town was established by Caleb Fryley and Johnny Jones in 1816 as Bear Meat Cabin. The post office was opened as Blountsville on October 20, 1825, and incorporated on December 13, 1827. It was the county seat until 1889 when the government was moved to Oneonta.
There were many schools in the town in the early years: The Academy, Blount College and the District Agricultural School, plus the public schools. The Blount County Courthouse and jail was built in 1833 and remained there until it was moved to Oneonta. A major crossroads in early Alabama, Blountsville became a Confederate depot for the cavalry. Confederate forces led by General Nathan Bedford Forrest and Union forces led by General Abel Streight skirmished briefly in the town on May 1, 1863, and Major General Lovell H. Rousseau and his Union cavalry occupied the town in July 1864. Blount College was in the building that was originally the courthouse. It was established in 1890. The beautiful Blountsville United Methodist Church was established in 1818 and is the oldest building in Blountsville and is still in use today. Another old building in Blountsville was once known as the Barclift House. Built in 1834 as Hendricks Tavern, it is now owned and is being restored by the Ortiz family.
The Copeland-Bussey House, built c. 1835, is one of the oldest structures in northeast Alabama. The building has been stabilized by the Alabama Historic Preservation Alliance and the Blountsville Historical Society.
Find the Ideal Phlebotomy School near Blountsville AL
Making sure that you pick the most suitable phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying health care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomy training programs are found in a number of educational institutes, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive array of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program offerings may differ slightly from state to state as every state has its own mandates when it concerns phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must carefully evaluate and compare each program prior to making your ultimate decision. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the right school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Blountsville AL.
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