Choosing a Phlebotomy Technician Course near Lancaster California
Selecting the right phlebotomy training near Lancaster CA is an important first step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a difficult undertaking to assess and compare each of the school alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s vital that you do your due diligence to ensure that you get a quality education. In reality, most potential students begin their search by looking at 2 of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional factor you might look into is whether to attend online classes or commute to an area campus. We’ll review more about online classes later in this article. What you need to remember is that there is much more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables such as accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and should be part of your decision process as well. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you choose the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our conversation about online training.
Phlebotomist Career Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. Although that is their primary function, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to verify that the instruments being used are sterile and single use only. Following the collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Next, paperwork has to be correctly filled out 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 can be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. A number of Lancaster CA phlebotomists in fact work in labs and are in charge of making certain that samples are tested properly using the strictest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they might be required to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Work?
The most basic answer is wherever patients are treated. Their work environments are numerous and varied, such as Lancaster CA hospitals, medical clinics, 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 senior citizens. Some phlebotomists, based on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting blood from a certain type of patient. For instance, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would only be collecting blood from elderly patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be collecting blood from newborns and mothers solely. In contrast, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would work with different patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 kinds of programs that offer phlebotomist training in Lancaster CA, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program usually takes less than a year to finish and furnishes 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 incorporate training to become a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they typically take 2 years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program offer a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. After you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. Although not required in most states, a number of employers look for certification prior to hiring technicians. A few of the main certifying agencies 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, like Nevada and California. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s important that you pick a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a quality education, but also readies you for any certification or licensing exams that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomy Online Classes
To begin with, let’s dispel one potential misconception. You can’t obtain all of your phlebotomy training online. A good portion of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an approved Lancaster CA healthcare facility or an on-campus lab|an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility}. Numerous courses also require completion of an internship in order to graduate. However since the non-clinical portion of the training may be accessed online, it might be a more convenient option for many students. As an additional benefit, some online schools are less expensive than their traditional counterparts. And some expenses, including those for commuting or textbooks, may be lessened also. Just verify that the online phlebotomy school you enroll in 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 approach to learning. If you are disciplined enough to study at home, then attaining your certificate or degree online might be the right option for you.
Points to Ask Phlebotomist Colleges
Now that you have a general understanding about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to initiate your due diligence process. You might have already picked the type of program you wish to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we previously mentioned, the location of the California college is relevant in addition to the cost of tuition. Possibly you have opted to enroll in an online phlebotomy college. All of these decisions are an important component of the process for choosing a program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Following are some questions that you should ask about all of the Lancaster CA colleges you are reviewing prior to making your final decision.
Is the Phlebotomy Program Specific to California? As previously mentioned, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while a few others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum hours of practical training performed before working as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you might have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to enroll in a phlebotomist program that complies with the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing and preps you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the Program Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you enroll in should be accredited by a reputable national or regional accrediting agency, for example the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of benefits to graduating from an accredited school aside from an assurance of a premium education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification exam administered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in getting loans or financial assistance, which are typically not available for non-accredited colleges in Lancaster CA. Last, 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 Ranking? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist colleges, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s important to investigate the reputations of any schools you are considering. You can start by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their students as part of their job assistance program. You can screen online school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even talk to some Lancaster CA local clinics or hospitals that you might be interested in working for and see if they can offer any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the California school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been filed or if the colleges are in full compliance.
Is Adequate Training Included? To begin with, check with the California regulator or the state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any Lancaster CA phlebotomy program that you are looking at should furnish at least 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of clinical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Find out from the California colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with local health care facilities. They are the ideal way to receive hands-on practical training often not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Lancaster CA medical community. And they are a plus on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the colleges you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the college has both a good reputation along with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Lancaster CA healthcare community.
Are Classes Conveniently Scheduled? And last, it’s crucial to make sure that the ultimate school you choose offers classes at times that will accommodate your active schedule. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while going to college. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Lancaster CA, make sure they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure it is an option also. Even if you have decided to study online, with the clinical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up procedure is should you need to miss any classes because of emergencies or illness.
Why Did You Decide to Be a Phlebotomy Tech?When getting ready to interview for a Phlebotomy Tech position, it's important to review questions you may be asked. One of the things that hiring managers frequently ask Phlebotomist prospects is "What made you pick Phlebotomy as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not merely the private reasons you may have for becoming Phlebotomy Tech, but also what attributes and abilities you have that make you good at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining specifically to Phlebotomy, along with a certain number of general interview questions, so you need to prepare several ideas about how you want to respond to them. Considering there are so many factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a number of ways. When formulating an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession interests you as well as the strengths you have that make you an outstanding Phlebotomist and the leading choice for the position. Don't try to memorize a response, but jot down some ideas and topics that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Reviewing sample answers can assist you to formulate your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
Find the Right Phlebotomy School near Lancaster CA
Making sure that you select the ideal phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this fulfilling health care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are multiple factors that go into the selection of a superior program. Phlebotomy training programs can be offered in a variety of educational institutes, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide array of courses in healthcare and medical sciences. Course options may vary somewhat across the country as every state has its own prerequisites when it comes to phlebotomist training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must diligently research and compare each program prior to making your ultimate choice. By asking the questions that we have presented, you will be able to fine tune your choices so that you can pick the right school for you. And with the proper education, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Lancaster CA.
Learn About Lancaster California
Lancaster /ˈlæn.kæstər/ is a charter city in northern Los Angeles County, in the Antelope Valley of the western Mojave Desert in Southern California. As of 2013, Lancaster was the 31st largest city in California. Lancaster is part of a twin city complex with its southern neighbor Palmdale and together they are the principal cities within the Antelope Valley region and California's High Desert.
Lancaster is located approximately 70 miles (110 km) north (by highway) of downtown Los Angeles, near the Kern County line. It is separated from the Los Angeles Basin by the San Gabriel Mountains to the south, and from Bakersfield and the San Joaquin Valley by the Tehachapi Mountains to the north. The population of Lancaster grew from 37,000 at the time of its incorporation in 1977 to over 156,000 in 2010. According to the Greater Antelope Valley Economic Alliance report of 2015, Lancaster has a population of 168,049.
The area where Lancaster is now located, known as the Antelope Valley, was originally home to the Paiute Indians. Lancaster's origins as a settlement start with the Southern Pacific Railroad, which is believed to first use the name Lancaster, where a station house, locomotive watering facilities and section gang housing were built when the railroad laid track through the town's future location. In 1876 the Southern Pacific completed the line through the Antelope Valley, linking San Francisco and Los Angeles. The origin of Lancaster's name is unclear, attributed variously to the surname of a railroad station clerk, the moniker given by railroad officials, or the former Pennsylvania home (Lancaster, Pennsylvania) of unknown settlers. Train service brought passengers through the water-stop-turned-community, which, with the help of promotional literature, attracted new settlers. The person credited with formally developing the town is Moses Langley Wicks, who in 1884 bought property from the railroad for $2.50 per acre, mapped out a town with streets and lots, and by September was advertising 160-acre tracts of land for $6 an acre. The following year, the Lancaster News started publication, making it the first weekly newspaper in the Antelope Valley. By 1890, Lancaster was bustling and booming, and thanks to adequate rainfall, farmers planted and sold thousands of acres of wheat and barley.
The town was devastated by the decade-long drought that began in 1894, killing businesses and driving cattle north, though fortunes improved somewhat in 1898 following the nearby discoveries of gold and borax, the latter to become a widespread industrial chemical and household cleaner. Thanks to the five-year construction of the 233-mile Los Angeles Aqueduct starting in 1908, Lancaster became a boom town by housing aqueduct workers. The 1912 completion of Antelope Valley Union High School allowed students from the growing region to study locally instead of moving to distant cities, and the school boasted the state's first dormitory system to accommodate students from outlying districts. The community began a steady growth spurt in the 1930s, starting with construction of Muroc Air Force Base, site of frequent flight tests, including the "breaking" of the sound barrier by Chuck Yeager in a Bell X-1A in 1947. In the 1980s through the end of the program, Edwards Air Force Base, by then renamed, hosted a limited number of landings of the Space Shuttle. The development of Air Force Plant 42 in 1958, augmented in the 1960s by construction of Lockheed Aircraft's Plant 10, created tens of thousands of jobs. High-wage employment hit its peak in the 1970s during the Lockheed L-1011 commercial wide body jetliner project, for which all assembly and some engineering and parts production were performed. 250 L-1011 aircraft were assembled and flown from this plant and airfield. Lancaster was an unincorporated community in Los Angeles County until 1977, when it was incorporated as a city, with Arnold Rodio serving as its first mayor.
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