How to be a Phlebotomist
Phlebotomist is a well paying job. You could earn anywhere from $24,000 t0 $35,000 a year, depending on where you live and where you work. This is because salaries for phlebotomists tend to vary based on whether you work in a physician’s office, a blood bank, a hospital, a clinic or some other type of facility. The average salary for a phlebotomist in the US is actually $35,512 a year–which is very good when you consider the fact that the training you will need to become a phlebotomist could be as few as six weeks.
Phlebotomists must pass an examination to become certified. There are at least 9 different organizations that certify phlebotomists including the National Phlebotomy Association, the American Society for Clinical Pathology – Board of Certification (ASCP–BOC) and at the National Healthcareer Association (NHRA).
The exam will vary depending on the certifying body. However, almost every one of them will test your knowledge of the human anatomy, record keeping, blood collecting (venipuncture), bedside mannerisms, physiology, blood and cell composition, laboratory safety, CPR, quality control, and the use of computers in phlebotomy.
What you need to qualify for training as a phlebotomis
Most schools that offer phlebotomy training will require that you have either a high school degree or a GED. How long you must study to become a phlebotomist will depend on the training is selected. Most courses are set in a 6-week program or the equivalent of a full semester. This will also depend on whether you decide to go to school full-time or part-time. If you have other obligations such as a job or kids at home, you may want to look for a course tailored to fit those needs. Conversely, if you can go to school full-time you might elect to take a 2-year course at a community college. When you do this, you will graduate with both your phlebotomy certification and an Associates degree.
Hospitals especially tend to require that you do a number of hours of on-the-job training before you are able to work as a phlebotomist.
Studying for the phlebotomy certification exam
No matter where you have taken your training, it is important to review the phlebotomy basics and perform some practical tests before taking the exam. There are practice tests available that are helpful because they have questions that are similar to those you will find in the actual exam. In addition, there are some good phlebotomy books available such as “Phlebotomy Essentials.” Books like this one will cover everything that you need to know to get through the examination successfully.