Your Path to Becoming a Phlebotomist

Phlebotomists are healthcare professionals who are responsible for drawing from patients and running it through various medical tests for diagnosis. Under this title they must update patient records, clean and sterilize medical equipment, check vitals, and send urine and fecal samples for lab testing.

Many different types of healthcare professionals employ phlebotomists for their skills including; medical assistants, paramedics, and clinical laboratory scientists. Employees can help reduce the need for large amounts of other workers by taking on the full load of blood processing. Their work environments can be at hospitals or clinics or immobile, involving travelling long distances or conducting blood drives open to the public.

Step 1 Education

School requirements for a phlebotomy career are very minimal. With a high school diploma or equivalent, students can complete a 6 week training course at a vocational or trade school to become qualified or they may complete a one year study of anatomy, patient interaction, medical ethics, universal standards and procedures, and blood collection techniques. The American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP), American Medical Technologists (AMT) and the American Society for Phlebotomy Technicians (ASPT) are organizations that offer national certification in schools in order for one to become a certified phlebotomy technician.

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Step 2 Job Search

Average salary for phlebotomists is around $25,000 to $27,000 a year. Depending on location and experience in the field, one can expect to earn up to $35,000 annually.

Medical examinations are an integral part of everyday medical practice and blood sampling/testing plays a very large part in its processes. Job opportunities are expected to increase along with the constant growth of the overall medical industry.

Step 3 Career

Phlebotomists enjoy a typically 40 hour work week with medical benefits throughout their career. Many of them are responsible for part of massive blood drives. Without their contribution to the campaigns many healthcare facilities would be unable to go through with medical procedures, especially emergency situations, due to a lack of donor blood.

After some experience in the medical field, many phlebotomists can advance to lead technologist or, in rare cases, department manager. In order to advance farther many workers will return to school to gain further certification to become registered nurses, increasing their job opportunities and income by sometimes $20,000 more.