Choosing a Phlebotomist School near Decatur Georgia
Enrolling in the right phlebotomy training near Decatur GA is an essential initial step toward a rewarding profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a daunting undertaking to assess and compare each of the school options that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s necessary that you do your due diligence to make certain that you obtain a quality education. In fact, most prospective students start the process by looking at two of the qualifiers that first come to mind, which are location and cost. An additional option you may look into is whether to attend classes online or commute to an area campus. We’ll talk a bit more about online schools later in this article. What you need to keep in mind is that there is far more to checking out phlebotomy training programs than finding the closest or the cheapest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and must be part of your selection process too. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you need to ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are reviewing to help you select the right one for you. But prior to doing that, let’s address what a phlebotomist is and does, and then continue our discussion about online schools.
Phlebotomy Tech Job Description
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. Although that is their main function, there is actually much more to their job description. Prior to collecting a blood sample, a phlebotomist has to check that the tools being employed are single use only and sterile. After collection, the sample must be accurately labeled with the patient’s information. Afterward, paperwork has to be correctly completed to be able to track the sample from the time of collection through the laboratory testing process. The phlebotomist then delivers the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be tested for such things as infectious diseases, pregnancy or blood type. Many Decatur GA phlebotomists actually work in laboratories and are responsible for making certain that samples are analyzed correctly utilizing the highest quality assurance procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they may be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the drawing, transport and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomy Techs Practice?
The easiest response is wherever there are patients. Their workplaces are numerous and diverse, including Decatur GA medical clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, or blood centers. They can be tasked to collect blood samples from patients of all ages, from infants or toddlers to seniors. A number of phlebotomists, based on their practice and their training, specialize in drawing samples from a certain kind of patient. For example, those working in an assisted living facility or nursing home would solely be drawing blood from older patients. If they are practicing in a maternity ward, they would be drawing blood from mothers and newborns exclusively. In contrast, phlebotomists practicing in a general hospital setting would be collecting blood from a wide variety of patients and would work with different patients every day.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are basically two kinds of programs that furnish phlebotomist training in Decatur GA, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program normally takes under a year to complete and provides a basic education as well as the training on how to draw blood. It offers the fastest route to becoming a phlebotomy tech. An Associate of Science Degree in Clinical Laboratory Science, although not specifically a phlebotomist degree, will provide training to become a phlebotomist. Offered at community and junior colleges, they normally require 2 years to complete. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as available and as a 4 year program offer a more expansive background in lab sciences. Once you have completed your training, you will no doubt want to become certified. Although not mandated in most states, most employers look for certification prior to employing technicians. A few of the key 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, such as Nevada and California. California and a few additional states even require licensing. So it’s imperative that you enroll in a phlebotomy training program that not only offers a superior education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification exams that you elect or are required to take.
Online Phlebotomist Classes
To start with, let’s dispel one possible mistaken belief. You can’t get all of your phlebotomist training online. A good portion of the course of study will be clinical training and it will be carried out either in an approved Decatur GA 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-practical part of the training may be attended online, it might be a more practical option for some students. As an additional benefit, many online programs are less expensive than their traditional competitors. And some costs, such as those for textbooks or commuting, may be lowered also. Just make certain that the online phlebotomy college you select is accredited by a national or regional accrediting organization (more on accreditation to follow). With both the extensive online and clinical training, you can obtain a superior education with this approach to learning. If you are dedicated enough to study at home, then attaining your degree or certificate online may be the best choice for you.
Questions to Ask Phlebotomist Programs
Now that you have a general idea about what is involved in becoming a phlebotomy tech, it’s time to begin your due diligence process. You may have already decided on the kind of program you intend to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the Georgia college is significant as well as the tuition expense. Maybe you have decided to enroll in an phlebotomist online school. All of these decisions are a critical part of the process for picking a program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when arriving at your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about each of the Decatur GA schools you are considering before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Phlebotomy Program State Specific? As mentioned previously, each state has its own requirements for practicing as a phlebotomist. Several states require certification, while some others require licensing. Every state has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of practical training performed before practicing as a phlebotomist. Consequently, you might have to pass a State Board, licensing or certification examination. Therefore it’s very important to choose a phlebotomy program that satisfies the state specific requirements for Georgia or the state where you will be working and preps you for all exams you may have to take.
Is the College Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you select should be accredited by a reputable 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 in addition to an assurance of a superior education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not qualify to take a certification exam offered by any of the earlier listed certifying organizations. Also, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited schools in Decatur GA. Finally, graduating from an accredited college can make you more attractive to future employers in the job market.
What is the Program’s Ranking? In a number of states there is little or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s essential to check the reputations of all colleges you are looking at. You can begin by requesting references from the schools from employers where they place their graduates as part of their job assistance program. You can screen internet school rating and review services and solicit the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. You can also talk to several Decatur GA local clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and see if they can provide any recommendations. As a closing thought, you can check with the Georgia school licensing authority and find out if any grievances have been submitted or if the colleges are in total compliance.
Is Ample Training Included? To begin with, contact the Georgia regulator or the state regulator where you will be working to find out if there are any minimum requirements for the length of training, both classroom and practical. At a minimum, any Decatur GA phlebotomy program that you are reviewing should furnish no less than 40 hours of classroom training (most require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything less than these minimums may indicate that the program is not expansive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Ask the Georgia schools you are reviewing if they have an internship program in partnership with local healthcare facilities. They are the optimal means to receive hands-on practical training often not obtainable on campus. As an additional benefit, internships can assist students develop contacts within the local Decatur GA health care community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Landing your first phlebotomist job will be much easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Inquire if the colleges you are considering provide assistance and what their job placement percentage is. If a school has a high rate, meaning they place the majority of their students in positions, it’s an indication that the college has both an excellent reputation as well as an extensive network of professional contacts within the Decatur GA medical community.
Are Classes Compatible With Your Schedule? Finally, it’s crucial to verify that the ultimate program you pick provides classes at times that are compatible with your busy schedule. This is particularly true if you opt to still work while going to college. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Decatur GA, check that they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, verify it is an option as well. Even if you have decided to study online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And find out what the make-up procedure is in case you need to miss any classes as a result of emergencies or illness.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Phlebotomy Tech?When preparing to interview for a Phlebotomy Tech position, it's a good idea to review questions you might be asked. Among the things that recruiters often ask Phlebotomy Tech candidates is "What compelled you to pick Phlebotomy as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not only the private reasons you may have for being Phlebotomist, but also what characteristics and abilities you possess that make you good at what you do. You will probably be asked questions relating specifically to Phlebotomy, as well as a significant number of routine interview questions, so you must prepare several strategies about how you would like to respond to them. Considering there are several factors that go into selecting a career, you can address this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work interests you as well as the strengths you possess that make you an exceptional Phlebotomy Tech and the best choice for the job. Don't try to memorize a response, but take down a few ideas and anecdotes that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Reading through sample answers can help you to develop your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to include to enthuse the recruiter.
Enroll in the Best Phlebotomist Course near Decatur GA
Making sure that you enroll in the right phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this fulfilling medical care career position. As we have discussed in this article, there are several factors that contribute toward the selection of a premium school. Phlebotomy training programs are available in a wide range of academic institutes, such as community or junior colleges, trade schools, and colleges and universities that offer a comprehensive array of courses in medical care and health sciences. Course options can 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 carefully research and compare each college before making your final selection. By addressing the questions that we have presented, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can select the right college for you. And with the proper training, you can achieve your goal of becoming a phlebotomy technician in Decatur GA.
Learn About Decatur Georgia
Decatur is a city in, and the county seat of, DeKalb County, Georgia, United States and is part of the Atlanta metropolitan area. With a population of 20,148 in the 2013 census, the municipality is sometimes assumed to be larger since multiple zip codes in unincorporated DeKalb County bear the Decatur name. The city is served by three MARTA rail stations. The city is located approximately 5 miles northeast of downtown Atlanta and shares its western border with Atlanta.
Decatur was established at the intersection of two Native American trails: the Sandtown, which led east from the Chattahoochee River at Utoy Creek, and the Shallowford, which follows today's Clairmont Road, and eventually crossed near Roswell. It was named for United States Navy Commodore Stephen Decatur.
During the American Civil War, Decatur became a strategic site in Sherman's Atlanta Campaign. In July 1864, Major-General James McPherson occupied the town to cut off the Confederates' supply line from Augusta. On July 22, during the Battle of Atlanta, Confederate cavalry under Major-General Joseph Wheeler attacked McPherson's supply wagons and the Union troops left to defend the wagons. A historical marker at the old courthouse marks the site of this skirmish.
In the last half of the twentieth century the metropolitan area of Atlanta expanded into unincorporated DeKalb County, eventually surrounding two sides of the town of Decatur. Concurrently many well-to-do and middle class white Americans fled the area to more distant suburbs. The 1960s and 1970s witnessed dramatic drops in property values. However, more recently the city has regained economic vigor, partially thanks to several long-term downtown development plans that have come to fruition, making Decatur a trendy small mixed-use district with easy transit to downtown Atlanta. Over the past twenty years, it has gained a local and national reputation as a progressive city with a high level of citizen involvement that retains a small town feel despite its proximity to Atlanta.
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