In order to learn how to become a phlebotomist, you’ll need to complete a process that involves formal classroom training, clinical laboratory training and, last but not least, passing a phlebotomy certification exam. Below are some answers to key questions that may be raised in the process of becoming a phlebotomist. The first step in this journey is to find a phlebotomy training program that is accredited by one of the profession’s major regulatory bodies (e.g. the ASCP). Phlebotomy can lead to a great medical career without the time and expense required in many other medical fields.
What Are Prerequisites For Becoming A Phlebotomist?
- high school diploma or GED
- 120 hours of accredited classroom training
- 1,040 hours of work experience within three years in doing a wide range of phlebotomy skills and duties
- graduate from an accredited phlebotomy program
How Should I Choose A School Or Training Program?
Choosing the right school or training program is very important. Finding a school is a combination of what is available to your area or online and whether or not that school is accredited. Attending accredited schools and programs is essential. For questions about accredited phlebotomy certification in your area, the U.S. Department of Education (www.ed.gov) or a regional accreditation agency are great resources.
For example: The NAACLS (National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences) and ACA (American Certification Agency for Healthcare Professionals), and the NCCA (National Commission for Certifying Agencies.
Some states have additional accrediting bodies that must be taken into consideration. Example being, in California, phlebotomy certification programs must be accredited through the California Department of Public Health, Laboratory Field Services.
What Do I Have To Study To Become A Phlebotomist?
There are many areas of study needed to become a phlebotomist. Phlebotomy is a combination of the areas of study listed below and patient point of care skills. A good phlebotomist can make a patients experience smoother since blood and needles often make people uncomfortable. It is important that the patient feels confident in the phlebotomist.
- Anatomy and physiology, including the circulatory system, typical blood draw sites in the veins and arteries, and the composition of the blood
- Blood draw procedures (Drawing blood from the veins—venipuncture; from heels in the case of infants or adults with compromised veins; and from fingers.)
- Patient and technician safety procedures (Infection control; prevention of unprotected needle sticks; avoiding needle sticks to arteries and muscles.)
- Handling blood specimens and collection procedures
- Patient care
- Quality assurance
- Professional standards
- Patient privacy
- Hospital and clinic legal issues
What Skills Do I Need To Be A Phlebotomist?
Students must have standard manual dexterity, appropriate vision, the ability to stand for long periods of time, excellent organizational skills and people skills. These skills along with accredited training, genuine patient point of care and the absolute following of venipunctural procedures make a good phlebotomist. If you can do these then you are on your way answering the question of how to become a phlebotomist.