Picking a Phlebotomist Course near Clearwater Florida
Enrolling in the ideal phlebotomist training near Clearwater FL is an important first step toward a gratifying profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a difficult undertaking to evaluate and compare all of the school options that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s important that you complete your due diligence to make sure that you receive a quality education. In reality, most prospective students begin their search by considering 2 of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are location and cost. Yet another option you may consider is whether to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll review more about online classes later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is a lot more to comparing phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also important considerations and need to be part of your decision process as well. Toward that end, we will supply a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you select the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s cover what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards resume our conversation about online training.
Phlebotomist Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. Although that is their main responsibility, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Before drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must verify that the instruments being used are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample must be correctly labeled with the patient’s data. Next, paperwork needs to be properly completed in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory testing procedure. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of Clearwater FL phlebotomists in fact work in labs and are in charge of ensuring that samples are tested properly under the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient responsibilities, they may be required to instruct other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where are Phlebotomists Employed?
The quickest answer is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are numerous and diverse, such as Clearwater FL hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They may be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or toddlers to senior citizens. Some phlebotomy techs, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a specific kind of patient. For instance, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would exclusively be drawing blood from senior patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital setting would be collecting blood from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from different patients each day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Certification and Licensing
There are essentially 2 types of programs that furnish phlebotomist training in Clearwater FL, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes under a year to complete and furnishes a general education along with 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, although not exclusively a phlebotomy degree, will include training to become a phlebotomy tech. Offered at junior and community colleges, they usually take 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are less accessible and as a 4 year program offer a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will probably want to be certified. While not required in the majority of states, most employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. Some 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 require certification prior to practicing as a phlebotomist, like California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you choose a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a quality education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Certificates and Degrees
To begin with, let’s resolve one likely mistaken belief. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant portion of the curriculum will be practical training and it will be performed either in an approved Clearwater FL healthcare facility or an on-campus lab|an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility}. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship prior to graduation. But since the non-clinical portion of the training may be attended online, it might be a more practical option for many students. As an additional benefit, a number of online programs are less expensive than their on-campus competitors. And some expenses, such as those for commuting or textbooks, may be lowered also. Just verify that the online phlebotomy college you choose is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a quality education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your degree or certificate online might be the best option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Since you now have a basic idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomist, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already picked the kind of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a degree or a certificate. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the Florida college is important in addition to the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an online phlebotomist school. All of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for picking a program or school. But they are not the only concerns when making your decision. Following are a few questions that you need to ask about all of the Clearwater FL colleges you are reviewing before making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to Your State? As previously mentioned, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Several states require certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own requirement regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed prior to working as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may need to pass a State Board, licensing or certification exam. Therefore it’s extremely important to select a phlebotomist program that complies with the state specific requirements for Florida or the state where you will be working and readies you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomist school and program you choose should be accredited by a recognized regional or national accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are several advantages to graduating from an accredited program in addition to a guarantee of a premium 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. Next, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are typically not available for non-accredited programs in Clearwater FL. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more desirable to prospective employers in the job market.
What is the School’s Ranking? In numerous 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 important to check out the reputations of all colleges you are reviewing. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can also talk to some Clearwater FL area hospitals or clinics that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can offer any insights. As a closing thought, you can check with the Florida school licensing authority and ask if any grievances have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Provided? First, check with the Florida 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 Clearwater FL phlebotomy program that you are looking at should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything below these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to provide sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Find out from the Florida schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in collaboration with local medical facilities. They are the ideal way to obtain hands-on practical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students develop relationships within the local Clearwater FL medical community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Available? Getting your first phlebotomy job will be much easier with the help of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are reviewing offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a school has a high rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the school has both a good reputation together with a substantial network of professional contacts within the Clearwater FL healthcare community.
Are Classes Available as Needed? Finally, it’s critical to confirm that the ultimate college you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your busy schedule. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Clearwater FL, make sure they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to attend 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 should you have to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Why Did You Choose to Be a Phlebotomy Technician?When getting ready to interview for a Phlebotomy Tech position, it's important to reflect on questions you might be asked. One of the questions that interviewers often ask Phlebotomist prospects is "What compelled you to select Phlebotomy as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not just the private reasons you may have for being Phlebotomist, but also what attributes and talents you have that make you outstanding at your profession. You will likely be asked questions pertaining specifically to Phlebotomy, in addition to a significant number of routine interview questions, so you should organize several approaches about how you want to answer them. Because there are several variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession appeals to you along with the abilities you have that make you an excellent Phlebotomist and the ideal choice for the position. Don't try to memorize a response, but jot down some ideas and talking points that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample answers can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
Select the Best Phlebotomist Program near Clearwater FL
Making sure that you select the most suitable phlebotomist training is an important first step toward your success in this fulfilling healthcare career position. As we have covered in this article, there are multiple factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality college. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs are offered in a wide range of educational institutions, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive range of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Training program options can vary somewhat from state to state as each state has its own mandates when it pertains to phlebotomist training, licensing and certification. The most important point is that you must carefully screen and compare each college prior to making your ultimate choice. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the right college for you. And with the proper training, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Clearwater FL.
Learn About Clearwater Florida
Clearwater is a city located in Pinellas County, Florida, United States, northwest of Tampa and St. Petersburg. To the west of Clearwater lies the Gulf of Mexico and to the southeast lies Tampa Bay. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 107,685. Clearwater is the county seat of Pinellas County and is the smallest of the three principal cities in the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater metropolitan area, most commonly referred to as the Tampa Bay Area.
Cleveland Street is one of the city's historic avenues, and the city includes Spectrum Field and Coachman Park. The city is separated by the Intracoastal Waterway from Clearwater Beach.
Clearwater is the home of Clearwater Marine Aquarium, where bottlenose dolphins Winter and Hope live.
Clearwater is the worldwide spiritual headquarters for the Church of Scientology.
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