Have you ever been in a hospital or diagnostic center only to find yourself faced with a medical professional wielding a needle? While doctors and nurses are trained to take blood and other samples of bodily excretions, a phlebotomist is specially trained to do just that – all day long. In order to become a phlebotomist you must attend a program at a reputable phlebotomy school. Here are some things to consider as you attempt to choose a program.
Create a List of Schools
Start by creating a list of all of the schools in your area that offer phlebotomy training. Take some time to do a little research on these schools, getting a better idea of their class hours, the distance you’d have to travel to get there, and the estimated costs. Cross any schools that are too far away or that do not offer hours that work with your schedule off of the list.
Consider the Reputation
Now you have a shorter list of schools to consider. Start browsing the web to see what you can find out about the reputation of the schools you are considering. Students, past and current, are not often shy about leaving comments if they’ve had a bad experience. You could also consider calling hospitals and diagnostic labs to ask if they know which schools have the best reputation – and which school’s graduates they prefer working with.
Costs and Financial Aid
What is the cost of the schools you’re now seriously considering? Do they require payment in full or can you finance their programs? Can you apply for federal financial aid or does the school have a private financing option? Make sure you have the answers to these questions before you make your final decision and remember – the cheapest schools aren’t always the best.
Don’t forget to ask whether books and additional supplies are included in the cost of the course. Some will include your books but not your supplies (like needles for practicing). You are going to have to spend quite a bit of time doing practice and clinical work before you graduate and you need to be sure you are not stuck in a lurch when it comes time to make an investment in the tools you need to get the job done.
Unlike man other medical career paths, students who graduate from an accredited program will have a certification upon completion. There is no need for a phlebotomist to sit for any additional certification or credentialing exams.
A career in phlebotomy, for many, is just the beginning. It is a great entry-level position with room for growth – whether you want to learn more about diagnostic testing or advance into some other area of the allied health field. Take your training seriously and you’ll build a strong foundation for a successful future.