Picking a Phlebotomy Technician Training Program near Dothan Alabama
Enrolling in the right phlebotomy school near Dothan AL is an essential first step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging task to investigate and compare all of the school options that are accessible to you. However it’s necessary that you do your due diligence to make sure that you obtain a superior education. In fact, a large number of prospective students start their search by looking at two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Yet another factor you may look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. We’ll review more about online schools later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is a lot more to checking out phlebotomist training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and need to be part of your selection process too. Toward that end, we will supply a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomist schools you are considering to help you pick the best 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 Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their main responsibility, there is actually far more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to check that the instruments being used are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample needs to be properly labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork needs to be properly completed in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory screening process. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some phlebotomists actually work in Dothan AL area laboratories and are in charge of making sure that samples are analyzed correctly using the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they can be asked to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The easiest answer is wherever there are patients. Their work places are numerous and varied, such as Dothan AL medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They can be tasked to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomists, based on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood samples from a specific type of patient. For instance, those working in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be drawing blood from senior patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital environment would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially two types of programs that provide phlebotomist training, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to finish and offers a basic education together with the training on how to draw blood. It provides 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 to become a phlebotomy tech. Available at Dothan AL junior and community colleges, they typically take two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program offer a more comprehensive background in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. While not mandated in the majority of states, many Dothan AL employers require certification before employing technicians. A few of the primary certifying organizations 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 prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech, such as Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you pick a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a superior education, but also preps you for any certification or licensing examinations that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomist Online Classes
To begin with, let’s resolve one possible misconception. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomy training online. A significant component of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be performed either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. A large number of courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-practical portion of the training may be attended online, it could be a more convenient option for many Dothan AL students. As an additional benefit, many online colleges are more affordable than their on-campus competitors. And some costs, including those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered as well. Just confirm that the online phlebotomy college you choose 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 quality education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online might be the right option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Schools
Since you now have a general idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already chosen the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the campus is significant as well as the tuition expense. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an online phlebotomy college. All of these decisions are an important component of the procedure for selecting a school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Following are some questions that you should ask about all of the Dothan AL programs you are reviewing before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As earlier discussed, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while a few others mandate licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to choose a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and prepares you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you choose should be accredited by a highly regarded national or regional accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many benefits to graduating from an accredited school in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification examination administered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more desirable to future employers in the Dothan AL job market.
What is the College’s Reputation? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it’s essential to check the reputations of all colleges you are considering. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can screen online school reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can even contact several Dothan AL hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been filed or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? To begin with, 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. At a minimum, any phlebotomy program that you are looking at should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums may indicate that the Dothan AL training program is not comprehensive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask the colleges you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with Dothan AL medical facilities. They are the optimal way to receive hands-on clinical training typically not available on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop contacts within the local Dothan healthcare community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Getting your first phlebotomist position will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the programs you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage 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 a good reputation along with a large network of professional contacts within the Dothan AL healthcare community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s critical to confirm that the final program you pick provides classes at times that are compatible with your hectic lifestyle. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while attending college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Dothan AL, make sure they are offered at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. 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 ask what the make-up protocol is should you need to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Considering Phlebotomy Training near Dothan AL?
Dothan /ˈdoʊθən/ is a city in Dale, Henry, and Houston counties in the U.S. state of Alabama. It is the largest city and county seat of Houston County, with a population of 65,496 at the 2010 census. It is located in the state's southeastern corner, approximately 20 miles (32 km) west of the Georgia state line and 16 miles (26 km) north of Florida. It is named after the biblical city, which is the place where Joseph's brothers threw him into a cistern and then sold him into slavery in Egypt.
Dothan is the principal city of the Dothan, Alabama metropolitan area, which encompasses all of Geneva, Henry, and Houston counties; the small portion that lies in Dale County is part of the Ozark Micropolitan Statistical Area. The combined population for the entire Dothan metropolitan area in 2010 was 145,639. The city serves as the main transportation and commercial hub for a significant part of southeastern Alabama, southwest Georgia, and nearby portions of the Florida Panhandle. Since approximately one-fourth of the U.S. peanut crop is produced nearby, with much of it being processed in the city, Dothan is sometimes referred to as "The Peanut Capital of the World". Dothan also hosts the annual National Peanut Festival at the dedicated "Peanut Festival Fairgrounds".
The area that is now Dothan was inhabited for thousands of years by successive cultures of indigenous peoples. In historic times it was occupied by the Alabama and Creek Native American tribes who were hunters and gatherers in the vast forests of pine that covered this region. These tribes had developed complex cultures, and often used to meet and camp for trading near a large spring at the crossroads of two trails.
Between 1763 and 1783, the region that is now Dothan was part of the colony of British West Florida. European-American settlers moving through the area during the late 18th and early 19th centuries discovered the Indian spring, naming it "Poplar Head". Most felt that the sandy soil common to this region would be unsuitable for farming, so they moved on.
Choose the Ideal Phlebotomist School near Dothan AL
Making sure that you select the right phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying health care field. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that go into the selection of a quality school. Phlebotomist training programs are offered in a number of educational institutes, including community or junior colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that provide a comprehensive array of programs in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options may vary somewhat across the country as every state has its own requirements when it concerns phlebotomy training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you need to carefully screen and compare each program before making your ultimate selection. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can select the best school for you. And with the appropriate training, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Dothan AL.
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