Choosing a Phlebotomist School near Ridgecrest California
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomist school near Ridgecrest CA is a critical initial step toward a rewarding career as a phlebotomist. It may seem like a daunting task to assess and compare all of the training alternatives that are available to you. However it’s important that you do your due diligence to make certain that you receive a quality education. In reality, a large number of prospective students begin the process by considering two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are cost and location. An additional factor you may consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. We’ll discuss more about online schools later in this article. What’s important to keep in mind is that there is far more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and need to be part of your decision process also. Toward that end, we will furnish a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are evaluating to help you pick the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our conversation about online schools.
Phlebotomy Technician Work Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. While that is their main responsibility, there is in fact much more to their job description. Before collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to check that the instruments being employed are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample has to be properly labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork has to be correctly filled out to be able to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory screening process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it may be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Some Ridgecrest CA phlebotomists in fact work in labs and are in charge of ensuring that samples are analyzed properly under the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient responsibilities, they may be asked to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?
The easiest response is wherever they treat patients. Their workplaces are many and varied, including Ridgecrest CA medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood centers. They may be charged to draw blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, based on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a particular kind of patient. For instance, those practicing in a nursing home or assisted living facility would solely be drawing blood from older patients. If they are working in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians practicing in a general hospital setting would be collecting blood from a wide range of patients and would work with different patients on a daily basis.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are basically 2 types of programs that furnish phlebotomist training in Ridgecrest CA, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program typically takes less than a year to finish and furnishes a general education together with the training on how to draw blood. It offers the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, even though it’s not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will incorporate training to become a phlebotomist. Offered at junior and community colleges, they normally require two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a four year program furnish a more expansive background in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to get certified. While not required in the majority of states, a number of employers require certification before employing technicians. Some 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 phlebotomy tech, such as California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you choose a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a superior education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Classes
First, let’s resolve one likely mistaken belief. You can’t get all of your phlebotomy training online. A good part of the curriculum will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an approved Ridgecrest CA healthcare facility or an on-campus lab|an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility}. A large number of courses also require completing an internship in order to graduate. But since the non-practical part of the training may be accessed online, it may be a more practical option for some students. As an added benefit, many online programs are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some costs, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist college you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the extensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a premium education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then obtaining your certificate or degree online might be the best option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Since you now have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You may have already picked the type of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we previously mentioned, the location of the California campus is significant in addition to the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an online phlebotomist college. All of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for selecting a school or program. But they are not the sole concerns when making your decision. Below we have provided several questions that you should ask about each of the Ridgecrest CA programs you are looking at prior to making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to California? As previously mentioned, each state has its own regulations for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while some others mandate licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum hours of practical training completed before practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomy program that fulfills the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be working and preps you for any examinations you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you pick should be accredited by a recognized national or regional accrediting agency, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several benefits to graduating from an accredited program aside from an assurance of a premium education. To begin with, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification exam administered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Also, accreditation will help in securing loans or financial assistance, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited schools in Ridgecrest CA. Last, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to prospective employers in the job market.
What is the School’s Reputation? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy colleges, so there are some that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s imperative to check the reputations of any colleges you are considering. 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 internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can even contact several Ridgecrest CA area clinics or hospitals that you might have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the California school licensing authority and find out if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Enough Training Included? To begin with, check with the California regulator or 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 Ridgecrest CA phlebotomist program that you are reviewing should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums might signify that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask the California colleges you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional medical facilities. They are the optimal means to obtain hands-on clinical training frequently not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can help students develop relationships within the local Ridgecrest CA health care community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Available? Landing your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a higher rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the program has both a good reputation along with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Ridgecrest CA health care community.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s crucial to confirm that the ultimate school you select offers classes at times that are compatible with your busy schedule. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Ridgecrest CA, check that they are available 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 certain 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 Become a Phlebotomy Tech?When getting ready to interview for a Phlebotomy Tech position, it's helpful to review questions you may be asked. One of the questions that hiring managers often ask Phlebotomist applicants is "What compelled you to select Phlebotomy as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to learn is not merely the personal reasons you might have for being Phlebotomy Tech, but also what characteristics and talents you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating exclusively to Phlebotomy, as well as a significant number of routine interview questions, so you should prepare several approaches about how you would like to address them. Since there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can address this fundamental question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession appeals to you along with the strengths you have that make you an excellent Phlebotomy Technician and the ideal choice for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but jot down several concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample answers can assist you to prepare your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to include to wow the interviewer.
Choose the Right Phlebotomy College near Ridgecrest CA
Making certain that you pick the most suitable phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this fulfilling health care career position. As we have addressed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a quality school. Phlebotomy training programs are found in a number of academic institutes, including junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive assortment of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Course offerings may vary a bit across the country as each state has its own criteria when it concerns phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you need to diligently research and compare each college prior to making your final choice. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can pick the right college for you. And with the proper education, you can reach your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Ridgecrest CA.
Learn About Ridgecrest California
Ridgecrest is a city in Kern County, California, United States. It is located along U.S. Route 395 in the Indian Wells Valley in northeastern Kern County, adjacent to the Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake (NAWS, or China Lake). The population was 27,616 at the 2010 census, up from 24,927 at the 2000 census. It was incorporated as a city in 1963.
Ridgecrest is surrounded by four mountain ranges; the Sierra Nevada on the west, the Cosos on the north, the Argus Range on the east, and the El Paso Mountains on the south. It is approximately 82 miles (132 km) from the Lancaster/Palmdale area and approximately 145 miles (233 km) from both Bakersfield and San Bernardino, the three nearest major urban centers. Private air travel in and out of the city is provided through the Inyokern Airport. There are currently no scheduled commercial flights in or out of Ridgecrest.
Ridgecrest is within two hours of the highest and the lowest points in the contiguous U.S.
The settlement began as a farming community called Crumville in 1912, honoring James and Robert Crum, local dairymen. The first post office opened in 1941. By 1943, Ridgecrest had grown to 115 homes and 196 residents. NOTS (Naval Ordnance Test Station) was established in November 1943, providing a strong job base for the years to come.
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