How to Pick the Right Phlebotomist School
Selecting the ideal phlebotomy school near Grove Hill AL is a critical initial step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult task to investigate and compare each of the training options that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s vital that you do your due diligence to make sure that you receive a quality education. In reality, many potential students start the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional factor you might look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll review a bit more about online classes later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than locating the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and need to be part of your decision process too. 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 pick the ideal one for you. But before we do that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our conversation about online classes.
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Should You Choose a Career as a Phlebotomy Technician?
First of all, few people are likely to know what a phlebotomy tech or phlebotomist is. The basic definition is a health care professional whose job is to draw blood. We will provide more details later. So naturally anyone who selects this profession must be OK around needles and blood. And if you are anxious in hospitals or other Grove Hill AL medical facilities, well this profession probably is not right for you. And then there are the patients. Phlebotomists often work around anxious people who hate needles or having a blood sample drawn. And because most health care facilities are open around the clock, you will probably be expected to work weekends, evenings and even on holidays. But if you can handle the hours and the blood and needles, and if you enjoy helping people and are patient and compassionate, this may be the right job for you.
Phlebotomy Technician Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their primary responsibility, there is in fact far more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to verify that the tools being utilized are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample needs to be properly labeled with the patient’s data. Afterward, paperwork must be accurately 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 can be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many phlebotomists actually work in Grove Hill AL labs and are in charge of making certain that samples are analyzed properly under the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient responsibilities, they might be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?
The easiest response is wherever there are patients. Their work places are many and varied, including Grove Hill AL medical clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be charged to draw blood samples from patients of all ages, from babies or young children to seniors. Some phlebotomists, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting blood from a particular type of patient. For instance, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would only be collecting blood from senior patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients every day.
Phlebotomist Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomy training, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to complete and provides a basic education along with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest means to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will include training to become a phlebotomy tech. Available at junior and community colleges, they typically require 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program provide a more comprehensive foundation in lab sciences. When you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. Although not mandated in the majority of states, many Grove Hill AL employers look for certification before hiring technicians. A few 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 require certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, such as Nevada and California. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only supplies a quality education, but also preps you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Online Phlebotomist Colleges
First, let’s dispel one likely mistaken belief. You can’t receive all of your phlebotomist training online. A good component of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be conducted either in an approved healthcare facility or an on-campus lab. Many courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-practical portion of the training can be attended online, it may be a more practical alternative for some Grove Hill AL students. As an added benefit, many online programs are more affordable than their on-campus competitors. And some expenses, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be reduced also. Just verify that the online phlebotomist college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a superior education with this means of learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online might be the right option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Since you now have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already chosen the type of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the school is important if you will be commuting from Grove Hill AL in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an accredited phlebotomist online college. Each of these decisions are an important part of the procedure for picking a phlebotomy program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are looking at before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As mentioned previously, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of clinical training performed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s very important to choose a phlebotomist program that fulfills the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing and prepares you for all examinations you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you select 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 program in addition to a guarantee of a quality education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to sit for a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are often unavailable for non-accredited colleges. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more desirable to prospective employers in the Grove Hill AL job market.
What is the School’s Reputation? In many states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest caliber. So along with accreditation, it’s essential to check out 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 rating and review services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also check with some Grove Hill AL hospitals or clinics that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations. As a final thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been submitted or if the schools are in full compliance.
Is Ample Training Included? First, check with the state regulator where you will be practicing to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both clinical and classroom. As a minimum, any phlebotomist program that you are considering should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything lower than these minimums might indicate that the program is not expansive enough to furnish adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out from the colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with area healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Grove Hill AL medical community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Available? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school 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 Grove Hill AL health care community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? Finally, it’s crucial to verify that the final program you choose offers classes at times that are compatible with your busy schedule. This is particularly important if you opt to continue working while going to school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Grove Hill AL, make sure they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, confirm 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 completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is in case you have to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Where to Find Top Phlebotomy Colleges Near Me Grove Hill Alabama
Making certain that you enroll in the ideal phlebotomist training is a critical first step toward your success in this rewarding healthcare career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are several factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are offered in a variety of educational institutions, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive array of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Course offerings may differ a bit across the country as every state has its own criteria when it pertains to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most critical point is that you must diligently evaluate and compare each school prior to making your ultimate selection. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Where to Find Top Phlebotomy Colleges Near Me and to get more information regarding Where to Find Weekend Phlebotomy Certificate Programs Near Me. However, by asking the questions that we have furnished, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can select the best phlebotomy school for you. And with the appropriate training, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Grove Hill AL.
Other Bloody Wonderful Alabama Locations
Grove Hill, Alabama
The area that is now Grove Hill was originally inhabited by Creek and Choctaw Indians. The county seat of Clarke County was established at what later became Grove Hill in 1832 as the spot was most central to the rest of the county. Known variously as Smithville, then Macon, the name Grove Hill was selected around 1850 for the large grove of oak trees on the plateau. The town was officially incorporated and chartered in 1929. In 1853, a yellow fever epidemic struck the town, killing many residents, almost wiping out the town.
The Grove Hill area has numerous sites on the National Register of Historic Places including the Alston-Cobb House, Bush House, John A. Coate House, Cobb House, Dickinson House, Fort Sinquefield, and the Grove Hill Courthouse Square Historic District.
As of the census of 2010, there were 1,570 people, 615 households, and 402 families residing in the town. The racial makeup of the town was 56.6% White, 41.3% Black or African American, 0.3% Native American, 0.5% from other races, and 1.0% from two or more races. 2.0% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.