How to be a Phlebotomist
If you’re looking for a career that pays well, that’s held in high regard, and offers a great deal of security, you might want to look into a career as a phlebotomist.
If you are not familiar with phlebotomy it is essentially the taking of blood that is then used in a variety of different tests. To become a phlebotomist, you must understand human anatomy, venipuncture (how to take blood safely and painlessly) was, recordkeeping, computer usage and more.
To become a phlebotomist you will need to take a class which typically requires anywhere from 6 weeks to a full semester. These classes are available at hospitals, vocational schools, community colleges and schools established specifically to teach phlebotomy.
At the conclusion of this training, you’ll be required to take an exam to become certified. This examination varies from state to state, depending on each state’s requirements to become a phlebotomist.
For example, in the state of Colorado, students are required to take a course with a final examination and a practical exam. The practical part of the exam must be passed successfully from start to finish. When you successfully complete the class, you are then placed into an externship. Once you have passed the course and completed your externship, you’ll receive a certificate as a registered phlebotomist.
Some of the subjects covered in a phlebotomy training course include quality assurance and legal issues, patients rights, universal precautions and safety rules, basic medical terminology, and basic anatomy, physiology and circulation.
In comparison, the state of California has 3 kinds of phlebotomy certification. There is Limited Phlebotomy technician, Certified Phlebotomy Technician I and Certified Phlebotomy Technician II. Californians who do not have phlebotomy experience must have a high school degree or GED, complete 40 hours of phlebotomy class training from an approved school, complete 40 hours of phlebotomy practice that includes at least 50 venipunctures in and skin punctures, pass an approved certification exam and pay an application fee.
In New Jersey, before you seek phlebotomy certification, you must undergo training at a recognized school or college in the state. Also, per the rules of the Association of Phlebotomy Technicians, you would need to complete a minimum 6-month-long phlebotomy training program that involves 5 skin punctures and 100 venipunctures. To be certified by the American Society for Clinical Pathology, you must have a high school diploma, 40-classroom hours, 120-hours of clinical experience and 100 unaided blood collections. To nr certified by the National Phlebotomy Association, you need to complete 160–hours of classroom training and a practical internship.
As you can see, phlebotomy in different states requires different certification and different kinds of training. If you decide that a career as a phlebotomist is for you, be sure you have a good understanding of what will be required to become certified in your specific state.