Phlebotomy classes are usually offered by community colleges, although other educational facilities may offer classes for continuing education or as a part of another health care or medical degree. Phlebotomy courses are sometimes a component of nursing programs, for example.
What you will learn depends on the kind of phlebotomist training you sign up for. In some cases, a single 40-hour phlebotomy course is all that is required to become a registered or certified phlebotomist.
In other cases, candidates are required to complete a one-year college program and pass a phlebotomy certification exam. Usually the programs are referred to in community colleges as “career studies certificates” or CSC. While some seemingly unrelated classes may be required in order to complete the program, the focus is primarily on the skills needed to get a job in the field.
What are the Educational Requirements for Phlebotomy Classes?
Community colleges typically require a high school diploma or equivalent. For example, a general education diploma or GED is acceptable to enroll in a CSC or any other class offered by the college.
Some community colleges allow interested high school students with good academic performance to take the classes while they are still in high school. A student can get more information through their high school guidance office, through the local vocational school or through the local community college.
What Classes May Be a Part of the Program?
While the final goal of the programs is to teach the student how to puncture a vein correctly and how to draw blood, there are other things that a successful phlebotomist needs to know. The other classes that are a part of most community college programs cover those things.
Understanding written and spoken English is an important skill for any student and is a part of most college programs. A successful phlebotomist may assist with clinical research. All researchers must know how to write a basic research paper. College Composition, called ENG 111 in most schools, prepares the student for writing an acceptable research paper.
Prior to taking classroom phlebotomy classes, in which students learn how to find a vein and draw blood, the typical program requires the student to complete a CPR training course that meets the standards of the American Heart Association.
Basic clinical microbiology and medical terminology are other classes that may be a part of a complete phlebotomy training program. Not only do phlebotomists draw blood, they often work in medical laboratories to analyze the fluids. The need to understand medical terminology should be obvious.
Can You Take Phlebotomy Classes Online?
The main thing to consider when signing up for any program is the requirements for phlebotomy technicians in your state. You may be able to take part of your phlebotomy classes online, but some classroom instruction will be necessary. You really cannot learn how to draw blood unless you have some practice. On-site training is usually done during the second semester.
If your goal is to become a certified professional, you can contact American Medical Technologists or the AMT. The AMT sponsors phlebotomy classes in a number of different states. AMT certifications are recognized by most hospitals and health care organizations. Right now, there is no AMT online course. But you can get information at the AMT’s website.
Some Details of Phlebotomy Classes
After completing the training program, a phlebotomist will be able to locate a vein suitable for drawing blood. He or she will be able to puncture the vein using a needle or lancet, depending on how much blood is to be collected.
The phlebotomist is an important medical assistant. He or she must be able to follow the doctor’s orders and collect blood for tests in such a manner as to reduce the patient’s risk of infection at the sight of the puncture wound.
By judging the size of the veins, the phlebotomist selects an appropriately sized needle. By reading the doctor’s orders, he or she selects an appropriately sized vacuum tube for collecting only the amount necessary to complete the tests. Either in class or on the job, the phlebotomist learns how to label the tubes and how to use colored caps to ensure that the laboratory performs the right test or tests.
Although the details vary, good phlebotomy classes can help you begin a new and fulfilling career in the health care industry. The need for trained phlebotomists will only continue to grow as the years go by.