phlebotomist is someone who is trained to collect blood sample in a
clinical environment. They usually work under the supervision of the
Medical Laboratory Scientist. After the phlebotomist collects the blood,
they process and analyze the specimen with sophisticated laboratory
equipment. Because they collect blood and are at risk of exposure to a
variety of diseases, phlebotomists are trained in laboratory safety and
must adhere to very strict policies and procedures. To be successful in
this profession, an individual must enjoy working with people, work well
under pressure, be attentive to detail, and have excellent manual
dexterity. Another consideration that must be taken into account is how
uneasy most people are around needles and blood. This requires a
phlebotomist to calm patients and be an effective communicator and a good
listener. Due to recent technological advances, a phlebotomist must also
be able to use a computer as well as other high-tech devices. Certified
Nurses Assistants and Medical Assistants are often selected to receive
on-the-job training to become a phlebotomist.
Phlebotomists typically work in hospitals, commercial laboratories,
physician's offices, blood banks, pharmaceutical firms, home health
agencies, research institutions, and public health clinics.
High School Preparation:
Students interested in a career as a phlebotomist should concentrate on
high school courses in algebra, biology, geometry, chemistry, computer
skills, physics, health occupations/medical professions education,
English, and physical education.
Phlebotomists complete either on-the-job training or a formal phlebotomy
program, which typically last 4 to 8 months. On-the-job training is
available when there is an employment need in a particular facility.
Contact human resource departments in area hospitals to inquire about
available on-the-job training. Certification as a phlebotomist is also
available through several national credentialing agencies. Students
interested in pharmacy should contact schools for information on admission
and course of study. While a degree is not necessary to become a
phlebotomist, these institutions offer degree programs in medical
laboratory technology. Phlebotomy is included in the curriculum.
For educational institutions in
offering this course of study
Employment opportunities for phlebotomists are expected to be good as the
demand for skilled laboratory personnel increases. The market is expected
to increase 10%-20% over the next decade. The rapidly growing older
population will be a major reason for this growth, since older people tend
to have more medical problems that will require lab work. The fastest
growth in this field is expected in independent medical laboratories
because hospitals continue to send a greater amount of their lab work to
Average Annual Salary
American Society of Clinical Pathologists
2100 W Harrison Street
Chicago, IL 60612-3798
Phone: (312) 738-1336
National Phlebotomy Association
1901 Brightseat Road
Landover, MD 20785
Phone: (301) 699-3846
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