Choosing a Phlebotomy School near Sheffield Alabama
Choosing the right phlebotomist school near Sheffield AL is an important first step toward a fulfilling profession as a phlebotomist. It might seem like a challenging undertaking to investigate and compare each of the training alternatives that are available to you. Nevertheless it’s vital that you perform your due diligence to make sure that you obtain a superior education. In reality, a large number of students start the process 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 local campus. We’ll discuss 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 cheapest or the closest one. Other variables including accreditation and reputation are also significant considerations and should be part of your selection process as well. Toward that end, we will provide a list of questions that you should ask each of the phlebotomy schools you are assessing to help you pick 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.
Phlebotomy Technician Work Summary
A phlebotomist, or phlebotomy technician, draws blood from patients. Although that is their primary task, there is in fact so much more to their job description. Prior to drawing a blood sample, a phlebotomist must verify that the tools being employed are single use only and sterile. Following the collection, the sample must be properly labeled with the patient’s data. Next, paperwork must be accurately filled out in order to track the sample from the point of collection through the laboratory screening procedure. The phlebotomist then transports the blood to either an an outside lab facility or an in-house lab where it can be tested for such things as pregnancy, infectious diseases or blood type. Some Sheffield AL phlebotomists actually work in laboratories and are responsible for making certain that samples are analyzed correctly utilizing the highest quality control procedures. And if those weren’t enough duties, they can be called upon to train other phlebotomists in the collection, delivery and follow-up process.
Where do Phlebotomists Work?
The simplest answer is wherever they treat patients. Their work environments are many and varied, including Sheffield AL hospitals, medical clinics, long-term care facilities, or blood centers. They can be charged to collect blood samples from patients of of every age, from infants or toddlers to senior citizens. A number of phlebotomists, depending on their training and their practice, specialize in collecting blood from a certain type of patient. For example, those working 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 collecting blood from mothers and newborns solely. In contrast, phlebotomists working in a general hospital environment would be collecting samples from a wide variety of patients and would collect samples from new patients every day.
Phlebotomist Education, Licensing and Certification
There are essentially 2 kinds of programs that offer phlebotomy training in Sheffield AL, which are certificate and degree programs. The certificate program generally takes less than a year to complete and furnishes a basic education along 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, although not specifically a phlebotomy degree, will provide training on becoming a phlebotomist. Available at junior and community colleges, they typically require two years to finish. Bachelor’s Degrees are not as accessible and as a four year program furnish a more extensive foundation in lab sciences. When you have finished your training, you will no doubt want to be certified. Although not required in most states, many employers require certification before employing technicians. A few 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, such as California and Nevada. California and a few other states even require licensing. So it’s essential that you pick a phlebotomist training program that not only provides a premium education, but also prepares you for any licensing or certification examinations that you elect or are required to take.
Phlebotomist Online Colleges
To begin with, let’s resolve one potential misconception. You can’t get all of your phlebotomist training online. A significant part of the program of studies will be practical training and it will be performed either in an approved Sheffield AL 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. However since the non-practical part of the training can be attended online, it might be a more convenient option for many students. As an added benefit, some online programs are less expensive than their traditional counterparts. And some expenses, for instance those for textbooks or commuting, may be minimized as well. Just make certain that the online phlebotomist college 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 receive a quality education with this method of learning. If you are disciplined enough to learn at home, then earning your certificate or degree online might be the best option for you.
What to Ask Phlebotomy Schools
Now that you have a basic understanding about what it takes to become a phlebotomist, it’s time to start your due diligence process. You might have already decided on the type of program you want to enroll in, whether it be for a certificate or a degree. As we mentioned earlier, the location of the Alabama campus is relevant as well as the tuition expense. Perhaps you have opted to enroll in an phlebotomy online program. Each of these decisions are a critical component of the procedure for picking a program or school. But they are not the sole considerations when making your decision. Below we have provided some questions that you need to ask about each of the Sheffield AL colleges you are looking at prior to making your final selection.
Is the Phlebotomist Program Specific to Alabama? As earlier discussed, each state has its own laws for practicing as a phlebotomist. Some states require certification, while a few others require licensing. Each has its own prerequisite regarding the minimum amount of clinical training completed prior to practicing as a phlebotomist. As a result, you may have to pass a State Board, certification or licensing examination. Therefore it’s extremely important to choose a phlebotomist program that complies with the state specific requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working and readies you for all exams you may be required to take.
Is the School Accredited? The phlebotomy school and program you pick should be accredited by a respected regional or national accrediting organization, such as the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). There are many advantages to graduating from an accredited program aside from a guarantee of a quality education. First, if your program is not accredited, you will not be able to sit for a certification exam administered by any of the previously listed certifying organizations. Next, accreditation will help in securing financial aid or loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited colleges in Sheffield AL. Finally, earning a certificate or a degree from an accredited school can make you more attractive to future employers in the job market.
What is the School’s Ranking? In many states there is minimal or no regulation of phlebotomist schools, so there are those that are not of the highest quality. So in addition to accreditation, it’s imperative to investigate the reputations of all 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 assistance program. You can screen internet school reviews and rating services and solicit the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. You can even talk to some Sheffield AL local clinics or hospitals that you may be interested in working for and find out if they can provide any insights. As a final thought, you can check with the Alabama school licensing authority and ask if any complaints have been filed or if the schools are in total compliance.
Is Adequate Training Provided? To begin with, contact the Alabama regulator or the state regulator where you will be working to learn if there are any minimum requirements for the amount of training, both classroom and practical. As a minimum, any Sheffield AL phlebotomist program that you are looking at should provide at least 40 hours of classroom training (the majority require 120) and 120 hours of practical training. Anything lower than these minimums might indicate that the program is not comprehensive enough to offer sufficient training.
Are Internship Programs Included? Find out from the Alabama schools you are looking at if they have an internship program in collaboration with local medical facilities. They are the optimal way to obtain hands-on clinical training typically not provided on campus. As an added benefit, internships can assist students establish contacts within the local Sheffield AL healthcare community. And they are a plus on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Available? Getting your first phlebotomist job will be a lot easier with the assistance of a job placement program. Find out if the schools you are looking at offer assistance and what their job placement rate is. If a college has a higher rate, signifying they place most of their students in jobs, it’s an indication that the school has both a good reputation along with an extensive network of professional contacts within the Sheffield AL healthcare community.
Are Class Times Available as Needed? Finally, it’s crucial to confirm that the final school you select provides classes at times that will accommodate your busy lifestyle. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while going to school. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Sheffield AL, make sure they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, confirm it is an option also. And if you have decided to attend online, with the practical training requirement, make certain those hours can also be completed within your schedule. And ask what the make-up policy is should you need to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Why Did You Want to Be a Phlebotomy Technician?When preparing to interview for a Phlebotomy Tech position, it's helpful to reflect on questions you might be asked. One of the things that recruiters typically ask Phlebotomist applicants is "What compelled you to choose Phlebotomy as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to uncover is not only the private reasons you might have for becoming Phlebotomy Tech, but also what attributes and skills you possess that make you outstanding at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining primarily to Phlebotomy, along with a certain number of routine interview questions, so you should prepare a number of strategies about how you want to address them. Considering there are so many variables that go into choosing a career, you can answer this primary question in a variety of ways. When preparing an answer, try to include the reasons the profession interests you in addition to the talents you possess that make you an excellent Phlebotomist and the ideal choice for the job. Don't try to memorize an answer, but take down some concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Going over sample answers can help you to prepare your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to include to enthuse the recruiter.
Find the Right Phlebotomist Program near Sheffield AL
Making certain that you pick the right phlebotomist training is an essential first step toward your success in this fulfilling medical care field. As we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that contribute toward the selection of a quality program. Phlebotomy certificate or degree programs can be found in a wide range of educational institutes, such as junior or community colleges, vocational schools, and colleges and universities that offer a wide array of courses in medical care and health sciences. Training program options may vary a bit across the country as each state has its own mandates when it pertains to phlebotomy training, certification and licensing. The most critical point is that you need to carefully research and compare each program prior to making your ultimate choice. 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 appropriate training, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a phlebotomist in Sheffield AL.
Learn About Sheffield Alabama
Sheffield is a city in Colbert County, Alabama, United States, and is included in the Shoals metropolitan area. As of the 2010 census, the population of the city was 9,039. Sheffield is the birthplace of "country-soul pioneer" and songwriter Arthur Alexander, French horn player Willie Ruff, notable attorney, actor, former senator and presidential contender Fred Thompson, Watergate committee U.S. Senator Howell Heflin and U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell, whose father was working in nearby Athens when he was born. It sometimes is referred to as "the City of Senators" due to the births of Heflin, McConnell and Thompson within its borders. Col. Harland Sanders worked in the Sheffield depot for Southern Railway in the 1900s. It is also home to the Muscle Shoals Sound Studio where many popular 20th century musicians recorded their work, including Alexander and Ruff. It is the site of historic Helen Keller Hospital, formerly known as Colbert County Hospital and originally constructed in 1921. It was changed to Helen Keller Hospital in 1979, and Keller's birthplace Ivy Green is located less than one mile southwest of the hospital in adjacent Tuscumbia.
Sheffield is located in eastern Colbert County at 34°45′35″N 87°41′41″W / 34.75972°N 87.69472°W / 34.75972; -87.69472 (34.759721, -87.694592), on the south bank of the Tennessee River. Sheffield is bordered to the south by the city of Tuscumbia, to the southeast by Muscle Shoals, and to the north, across the river, by Florence.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 6.4 square miles (16.7 km2), of which 6.4 square miles (16.5 km2) is land and 0.08 square miles (0.2 km2), or 1.39%, is water.
Sheffield was one of the Colbert County sites of embarkation by riverboat and barge on the Tennessee River during the forced relocation of Eastern and Southern United States Indian tribes, known as the Trail of Tears. The embarkation site was at what is now the Spring Creek boat launch and park area.
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