Choosing a Phlebotomy Technician School near Merced California
Picking the ideal phlebotomy technician training near Merced CA is a critical initial step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a difficult task to investigate and compare all of the training options that are accessible to you. However it’s important that you complete your due diligence to make certain that you receive a quality education. In fact, most potential students start their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional option you may look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. We’ll review a bit more about online classes later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as reputation and accreditation are also important considerations and should be part of your decision process also. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you choose the right one for you. But before we do that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then resume our discussion about online training.
Phlebotomist Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy tech, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal responsibility, there is in fact much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the tools being employed are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample needs to be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork has to be accurately completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing 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 infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some Merced CA phlebotomists actually work in laboratories and are accountable for making certain that samples are analyzed properly utilizing the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough responsibilities, they may be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the collection, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Work?
The most basic response is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are many and varied, such as Merced CA hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood banks. They may be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomy techs, based on their training and their practice, specialize in drawing samples from a particular type of patient. For instance, those practicing in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be drawing blood from senior 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 practicing in a general hospital environment would be drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would work with different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomy Training, Certification and Licensing
There are basically two types of programs that furnish phlebotomist training in Merced CA, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes under a year to finish and furnishes a general education as well as 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 exclusively a phlebotomist degree, will include training to become a phlebotomist. Available at community and junior colleges, they usually require 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less available and as a four year program furnish a more extensive background in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. While not required in most states, a number of employers require certification prior to 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 prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, including California and Nevada. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it’s important that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only offers a premium education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing exams that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomy Online Certificates and Degrees
To begin with, let’s dispel one likely mistaken belief. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A substantial component of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be performed either in an approved Merced CA healthcare facility or an on-campus lab|an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility}. A large number of courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical portion of the training can be accessed online, it might be a more convenient alternative for many students. As an additional benefit, some online schools are less expensive than their on-campus counterparts. And some costs, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be lessened also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomy program you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation to follow). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a quality education with this method of learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then obtaining your degree or certificate online might be the right option for you.
Subjects to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Since you now have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already decided on the kind of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the California college is significant in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have decided to enroll in an phlebotomist online program. Each of these decisions are an important component of the process for picking a program or school. But they are not the only concerns when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided a few questions that you should ask about all of the Merced CA programs you are considering prior to making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? 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 clinical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it’s very important to select a phlebotomy program that complies with the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be working and prepares you for all examinations you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist program and school you choose should be accredited by a respected 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 program in addition to an assurance of a superior education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not qualify to sit for a certification examination offered by any of the earlier listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in obtaining financial aid or loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs in Merced CA. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more desirable to potential employers in the job market.
What is the Program’s Reputation? In numerous states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it’s imperative to check out the reputations of any schools you are considering. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they refer their students as part of their job placement program. You can research online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. You can even talk to a few Merced CA area clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the California school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Plenty of Training Provided? To begin with, check with the California regulator or 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 Merced CA phlebotomist program that you are looking at should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to provide adequate training.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask the California programs you are looking at if they have an internship program in partnership with area health care facilities. They are the optimal means to receive hands-on practical training often not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Merced CA medical community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the programs you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place most of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the college has both an excellent reputation together with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Merced CA medical community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? And last, it’s critical to verify that the ultimate school you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is particularly true if you decide to continue working while going to college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Merced CA, make sure they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, verify 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 completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is in case you have to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Why Did You Decide to Be a Phlebotomy Tech?When preparing to interview for a Phlebotomy Technician job, it's important to review questions you might be asked. Among the questions that interviewers often ask Phlebotomy Tech candidates is "What compelled you to choose Phlebotomy as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to uncover is not merely the private reasons you might have for being Phlebotomist, but also what characteristics and talents you possess that make you good at what you do. You will probably be asked questions relating exclusively to Phlebotomy, as well as a certain number of standard interview questions, so you must prepare a number of strategies about how you would like to address them. Given that there are numerous variables that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this primary question in a variety of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the strengths you possess that make you an exceptional Phlebotomist and the ideal candidate for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but take down a few ideas and topics that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Reading through sample answers can help you to formulate your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to include to wow the recruiter.
Select the Best Phlebotomy College near Merced CA
Making sure that you pick the most suitable phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior college. Phlebotomy training programs can be available in a wide range of educational institutions, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer an extensive array of programs in medical care and health sciences. Course offerings can differ a bit from state to state as each state has its own prerequisites when it pertains to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most important point is that you must diligently research and compare each school prior to making your final choice. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your options so that you can pick the right school for you. And with the appropriate education, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Merced CA.
Learn About Merced California
Merced County, California
Merced County (/mərˈsɛd/ mər-SED), is a county located in the northern San Joaquin Valley section of the Central Valley, in the U.S. state of California.
As of the 2010 census, the population was 255,793. The county seat is Merced. The county is named after the Merced River.
Merced County comprises the Merced, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is included in the Modesto-Merced, CA Combined Statistical Area. It is located north of Fresno County and Fresno, and southeast of Santa Clara County and San Jose.
The county derives its name from the Merced River, or El Río de Nuestra Señora de la Merced (River of Our Lady of Mercy), named in 1806 by an expedition headed by Gabriel Moraga, which came upon it at the end of a hot dusty ride on the El Camino Viejo across the San Joaquin Valley in Spanish colonial Las Californias Province.
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