Picking a Phlebotomist Course near Menlo Park California
Picking the ideal phlebotomist training near Menlo Park CA is a critical initial step toward a fulfilling career as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a difficult undertaking to investigate and compare each of the school options that are accessible to you. However it’s vital that you do your due diligence to make sure that you get a quality education. In reality, a large number of prospective students start the process by considering two of the qualifiers that initially come to mind, which are cost and location. Another option you may consider is whether to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. We’ll talk 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 closest or the cheapest one. Other factors including reputation and accreditation are also significant considerations and must be part of your decision process too. To assist in that effort, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you select the best one for you. But before we do that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and afterwards continue our conversation about online training.
Phlebotomist Career Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, collects blood samples from patients. While that is their principal responsibility, there is actually far more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist must check that the tools being used are sterile and single use only. After collection, the sample needs to be accurately labeled with the patient’s data. Next, paperwork must be accurately completed in order to track the sample from the time of collection through the lab testing procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an in-house lab or to an outside lab facility where it can be screened for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. A number of Menlo Park CA phlebotomists in fact work in labs and are responsible for making certain that samples are analyzed properly using the strictest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t sufficient duties, they can be asked to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Practice?
The quickest answer is wherever there are patients. Their work environments are many and diverse, including Menlo Park CA hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, or blood centers. They may be assigned to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from babies or young children to seniors. A number of phlebotomy techs, depending on their practice and their training, specialize in collecting samples 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 practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from newborns and mothers solely. On the other hand, phlebotomy technicians working in a general hospital setting would be drawing samples from a wide range of patients and would collect samples from different patients every day.
Phlebotomy Technician Training, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 kinds of programs that provide phlebotomy training in Menlo Park CA, which are degree and certificate programs. The certificate program generally takes under a year to complete and offers a general education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It provides the quickest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will include training on becoming a phlebotomist. Available at junior and community colleges, they usually require two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are less accessible and as a four year program offer a more expansive foundation in lab sciences. Once you have finished your training, you will probably want to be certified. Although not mandated in most states, most employers look for certification before employing technicians. Some of the main certifying organizations include:
- National Phlebotomy Association
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP)
- American Medical Technologists (AMT)
There are some states that do call for certification in order to practice as a phlebotomist, including California and Nevada. California and a handful of additional states even require licensing. So it’s important that you choose a phlebotomy training program that not only provides a superior education, but also readies you for any licensing or certification exams that you are required or elect to take.
Phlebotomy Online Colleges
First, let’s resolve one possible mistaken belief. You can’t get all of your phlebotomist training online. A substantial part of the program of studies will be clinical training and it will be conducted either in an approved Menlo Park CA healthcare facility or an on-campus lab|an on-campus lab or an approved healthcare facility}. Many courses also require completing an internship prior to graduation. However since the non-practical component of the training may be attended online, it could be a more practical alternative for some students. As an added benefit, some online programs are more affordable than their traditional counterparts. And some expenditures, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized also. Just make sure that the online phlebotomist program you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). With both the comprehensive clinical and online training, you can obtain a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to learn at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the best option for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomy Programs
Since you now have a basic idea about what it takes to become a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the type 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 campus is significant in addition to the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an phlebotomy online program. Each of these decisions are an important part of the process for selecting a program or school. But they are not the only considerations when making your decision. Following are several questions that you should ask about each of the Menlo Park CA programs you are reviewing before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Phlebotomist Program State Specific? As mentioned previously, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomy technician. Some states call for certification, while some others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomy tech. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to select a phlebotomist program that complies with the state specific requirements for California or the state where you will be working and readies you for any exams you may have to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy program and school you choose should be accredited by a reputable regional or national accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are a number of advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from an assurance of a premium education. To begin with, if your program has not received accreditation, you will not be able to take a certification examination offered by any of the previously listed certifying agencies. Next, accreditation will help in getting financial aid or loans, which are typically unavailable for non-accredited programs in Menlo Park CA. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the job market.
What is the School’s Ranking? In numerous states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomy schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So along with accreditation, it’s imperative to investigate the reputations of all schools you are reviewing. You can start by asking the schools for references from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job placement program. You can screen online school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. You can even contact a few Menlo Park CA local clinics or hospitals that you may have an interest in working for and see if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can contact the California school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been submitted or if the colleges 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 classroom and practical. As a minimum, any Menlo Park CA phlebotomist program that you are reviewing 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 signify that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out from the California colleges you are considering if they have an internship program in collaboration with regional medical facilities. They are the ideal way to receive hands-on clinical training typically not obtainable on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish relationships within the local Menlo Park CA medical community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Finding your first phlebotomist position will be a lot easier with the support of a job placement program. Ask if the colleges you are considering offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the program has both a good reputation together with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Menlo Park CA healthcare community.
Are Classes Conveniently Scheduled? Finally, it’s critical to confirm that the ultimate college you choose offers classes at times that are compatible with your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you opt to continue working while going to college. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Menlo Park CA, make certain they are offered at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option as well. And if you have decided to attend online, with the clinical training requirement, make sure those hours can also be fulfilled within your schedule. And find out what the make-up protocol is should you need to miss any classes as a result of illness or emergencies.
Why Did You Choose to Become a Phlebotomy Tech?When getting ready to interview for a Phlebotomy Technician job, it's advantageous to reflect on questions you may be asked. Among the things that hiring managers typically ask Phlebotomist applicants is "What drove you to select Phlebotomy as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not just the personal reasons you may have for being Phlebotomist, but also what characteristics and talents you possess that make you good at what you do. You will likely be asked questions relating specifically to Phlebotomy, in addition to a certain number of routine interview questions, so you should ready several approaches about how you want to answer them. Given that there are so many variables that go into choosing a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a number of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the abilities you possess that make you an outstanding Phlebotomy Technician and the leading choice for the job. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but write down some ideas and anecdotes that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can assist you to formulate your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the interviewer.
Select the Best Phlebotomist Program near Menlo Park CA
Making sure that you enroll in the right phlebotomy training is an important first step toward your success in this gratifying medical care field. As we have addressed in this article, there are a number of factors that contribute toward the selection of a superior school. Phlebotomy training programs are offered in a number of educational institutes, such as junior or community colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that provide a wide assortment of programs in medical care and health sciences. Course options may vary slightly across the country as each state has its own prerequisites when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you must carefully screen and compare each program prior to making your final selection. By asking the questions that we have provided, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can pick the best school for you. And with the proper education, you can realize your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Menlo Park CA.
Learn About Menlo Park California
Menlo Park, California
Menlo Park is a city at the eastern edge of San Mateo County, in the San Francisco Bay Area of California, in the United States. It is bordered by San Francisco Bay on the north and east; East Palo Alto, Palo Alto, and Stanford to the south; Atherton, North Fair Oaks, and Redwood City to the west. Menlo Park is one of the most educated cities in the state of California and the United States; nearly 70% of residents over the age of 25 has earned a bachelor's degree or higher. Menlo Park had 32,026 inhabitants according to the 2010 United States Census, which had grown to an estimated 33,888 inhabitants by 2016. Menlo Park is the site of Facebook's main campus.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 17.4 square miles (45 km2), of which 9.8 square miles (25 km2) is land and 7.6 square miles (20 km2) is water. The total area is 43.79% water. Menlo Park is long and narrow on a northeast to southwest axis. The northeast portion borders the San Francisco Bay and includes the Dumbarton Bridge that connects Menlo Park to Fremont on the east side of the bay. The city shoreline includes the city's largest park, Bedwell Bayfront Park 160 acres (65 ha) and the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge.San Francisquito Creek marks much of the southeast border of the city. West Menlo Park (not part of the city despite its name) along Alameda de las Pulgas nearly separates the southwestern part of the city (known as Sharon Heights) from the rest. The extreme southwest is clipped by Interstate 280.
The Bayshore Freeway (part of U.S. Route 101) traverses Menlo Park northwest to southeast near the shoreline and somewhat parallel to it to the southwest is El Camino Real. The intersection of El Camino Real and Santa Cruz Avenue is considered the heart of the city. Nearby, the Menlo Park Civic center is bounded by Ravenswood Avenue, Alma Street, Laurel Street and Burgess Drive. It contains the council offices, library, police station and Burgess Park which has various recreational facilities. Other major roads include Sand Hill Road in the Sharon Heights area.
The residential areas of Menlo Park are unofficially divided into several neighborhoods. Belle Haven is the only neighborhood east of the Bayshore Freeway; much of the rest of that area is business or protected land. Between Middlefield road (a road almost parallel to Bayshore) and Bayshore are the neighborhoods of the Willows, Suburban Park, Lorelei Manor, Flood Triangle, Vintage Oaks, and South of Seminary (the seminary being Saint Patrick's Seminary). Between Middlefield and El Camino Real are Felton Gables, Linfield Oaks, and Park Forest. West of El Camino Real until the hills are the neighborhoods of Downtown Menlo Park, Central Menlo Park, and Allied Arts (sometimes also known as Stanford Park, it is named for the Allied Arts Guild in it). In the hills are Sharon Heights and Stanford Hills. Several other neighborhoods are closely associated with Menlo Park but are actually in unincorporated San Mateo county; these include Menlo Oaks and Fair Oaks (latter part of the North Fair Oaks census area) between Bayshore and Middlefield, University Heights (also known as West Menlo Park) between Sharon Heights and most of the rest of the city, and Stanford Weekend Acres which is somewhat near Stanford Hills.
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