Updated: Apr 27
Have you been to a doctor recently where you needed to draw blood? Blood is the number one way doctors can accurately check your health.
Needles require extra care and knowledge that can’t be done by anyone else unless they have the certification for it.
During your uncomfortable or comfortable visit (depending on whether you like needles or not,) you may have noticed there was a specialized technician that worked on you. It wasn't by accident that the doctor requested a trained hand to assist with blood drawing.
Phlebotomy Technicians are experts at drawing blood and preparing it for blood tests. They collect specimens for lab testing.
This complete Phlebotomy Technician Guide is an overview of all the information you need to know as a Phlebotomy Technician.
Did you know that Phlebotomy Technician jobs are on the rise? It’s believed that it ranks in the top ten best medical jobs for 2022.
Our team of researchers and instructors spent the past few months putting together a guide just for you.
We’ve compiled the most common questions that include the following questions:
What Do Phlebotomists Do?
Phlebotomy is the process of puncturing a vein. Blood testing is performed for purposes such as blood donations or to check for diseases such as bacteria or cholesterol.
In simple terms, Phlebotomy Technicians collect blood from patients and prepare samples for testing. They collect a variety of specimen samples and label them to ensure accuracy.
A day-to-day routine for a Phlebotomy Technician includes the following:
Communicate with Patients
Collect Blood Samples from Patients
Practice Proper Patient Identification
Label vials with Patient Names and Dates
Decipher the best method for drawing blood depending on the specific patient
Transport all specimen samples to a nearby laboratory
Centrifuge blood samples, depending on if this is allowed in the state you are working in
Expect to work with a large number of patients varying in age and health status
Be friendly, courteous, and sympathetic when it comes to working with patients
Keep your phlebotomy cart or station well-organized at all times
Practice infection control standards at all times when working with patients and equipment
What are the Common Duties of a Phlebotomist?
Your focus is to deliver a safe and reassuring environment to patients.
A Phlebotomist will meet new people daily. As a Phlebotomist, your main duty is to draw blood and deliver this blood to local laboratories.
You should be a people person. Be prepared to draw blood from patients such as babies, children, young adults, and the elderly.
How Does an Online Phlebotomy Course Work?
Phlebotomy Technicians are required to take certification training. It is recommended that you find a certified vocational school that can offer training. If you don’t have the time to spend in class, there are Online Phlebotomy classes available.
Despite the name, Online Phlebotomy courses are not 100 percent online. In fact, all Phlebotomy courses are hybrid to some extent.
It really depends on the school you choose. While some online courses may offer you the clinical at their facility, there are others that require you to find it on your own. The ideal scenario is to find a school that offers both online and in-classroom training.
You are required to complete at least 40 venipunctures in the state of New Jersey. If you want to take the National Healthcareer Association exam, you’ll need to show proof that you have finished these venipunctures from an approved school.
Online Phlebotomy classes work by allowing students to learn the theory and vocabulary online. These courses may be either instructor-led or self-paced. Online courses will contain videos, examinations, and assignments.
After the successful completion of the online portion, schools may offer you the option to attend clinical hours. This is where you can learn your blood drawing techniques on willing volunteers.
What Are the Course Hours?
Course hours can vary, but the recommended amount of time is 80-hour courses. This will provide you with the maximum amount of time to learn and complete the training.
A Phlebotomy course can vary in length. Some courses are 3-weeks versus 6-months depending on the schedule such as morning, evening, or weekends. A weekend course could take longer to finish than your standard weekly courses.
Where Can Phlebotomists Work?
A Phlebotomist can work pretty much anywhere that needs blood or laboratory tests. Here are the most common places a Phlebotomist can work.
Trade or Vocational Schools - Teaching
Blood Donor Centers
What is the National HealthCareer Association?
After completing a Phlebotomy Technician program, you’ll be certified in your state. The next recommended step is to get nationally certified. Your state certification may not transfer over to another state.
However, if you are nationally certified, it adds an extra credential to your resume. You’ll be able to work across the nation.
They are experts in healthcare certification. It’s a certification that demonstrates
The National Healthcareer Association is a certification and accreditation. It’s the largest allied health certification agency in the United States and has awarded over 1 million nationally recognized certifications.
They help ensure that those who pass their exams have acquired the skills and knowledge meaningful to potential employers.
Does My Certification Transfer or Expire?
Your state certification does not expire. A state certification may not transfer to a different state if you decide to move. If you want to move to another state and keep your certification, becoming nationally certified is the best way to go.
The National HealthCare Association certification must be renewed every two years.
Does Being a Phlebotomist Lead to Better Jobs and Careers?
Absolutely! Phlebotomy is a great career itself. If you are looking for a part-time job that pays well or maybe you want to focus on your people skills, Phlebotomy is the place for you. You’ll work with people and learn more about the medical field itself.
Did I mention you can teach too? There are many programs out there that need teachers. While you're working part-time, consider teaching too. Phlebotomy Technicians are known for adding more certifications and credibility while they expand their options.
Phlebotomists can earn an average of $40,000 per year according to the U.S Bureau of Statistics. The expected job growth is 22% in the next ten years.
What Are the Requirements?
The requirements to register for a Phlebotomy program are minimal. These are the requirements you must meet.
Successfully complete a Phlebotomy Technician training course that is approved by the Department of Education and Workforce Development in NJ
Complete a competency evaluation that requires 40 live sticks.
Be at least 18 years of age
The National Certification exam is available, but not required.
What Do Phlebotomists Learn?
Phlebotomy Technicians gain extensive experience and knowledge during their course. This is what they learn during their training:
Performing Point-Of-Care Testing such as reading or answering questions
Fundamentals of Phlebotomy
Collection Techniques and Point of Care
Anatomy and Physiology
Networking and Communication
Maintaining Medical Equipment such as needles, test tubes, and vials
Preparing blood, urine, and other specimens for testing
How Much are Phlebotomy Courses?
You won’t break the bank, I can promise you that. It’s an alternative and won’t leave you in debt after you finish training.
Courses can vary in price and time. Courses may offer payment plans too. The prices range from anywhere between $400-$2000. I’d recommend going with a mid-range to higher premium course versus a lower-cost class. Premium price courses usually include a uniform, books, and great partnership programs for employment after completion.
Are you considering becoming a Phlebotomist? It's a fun choice. It works for everyone. Whether you are in high school about to graduate or someone whose been working in a field for a while, you might want to consider Phlebotomy.
The turnaround time is quick. Before you know it, you're certified to work as a Phlebotomist.
This is a great career choice for High School graduates who aren’t ready to go to college yet or adults in search of a new career path. You probably need to make a quick decision. You can start here.
You’ll find a rewarding career as a Phlebotomist because it’s a short-training requirement, yet the jobs are plenty.
You can find many opportunities in this thriving field. This field’s importance will only grow as the years pass and more people require healthcare attention. It’s a gem that should get more credit in the press and in the media.
Phlebotomy Technicians are critical team members in hospitals, laboratories, and blood donor centers and that makes it a smart decision for you.