What is a Phlebotomist? Everything You’ll Ever Need to Know

Have you ever asked yourself “What is a Phlebotomist?” Maybe you’ve heard about Phlebotomy from a friend or a coworker.  You may be interested in an exciting job in the medical field.

In the health care industry, there are many different job opportunities for a wide variety of medical professionals.  The health care industry continues to be one of the most stable industries in the United States. One of the easiest ways to gain access to many health care job opportunities is by becoming a  Phlebotomist.  Here are the basics about being a Phlebotomist and what is the responsibility of being one:

What Exactly Does a Phlebotomist Do?

The main duty of a Phlebotomist is to perform blood draws. They may also transport various laboratory specimens and do data entry. A Phlebotomist may also extract blood which is used for donations, transfusions and research.

It is worthwhile to note that the specific duties of a Phlebotomist will depend on the institution where the Phlebotomist works.  Aside from the responsibilities mentioned above, here are some other duties that may be performed by a phlebotomist:

  • Verifying records for a donor or a patient
  • Basic specimen processing
  • Storing and labeling of blood containers for processing
  • Information analysis and reporting

Where Do Phlebotomists Work?

Phlebotomists can work in hospitals, clinics, and laboratories. Some may even work in managerial roles in different health care facilities. Phlebotomists that work in hospitals may deal with responsibilities that differ from other settings.  Job duties may even include acting as a liaison between a patient and other medical staff.

Phlebotomists working in laboratories are likely to be more involved with a variety of tasks that may require further training. They are responsible for more than just the typical venipuncture and sample collection. These Phlebotomists are usually known as laboratory technicians and will have a variety of other responsibilities in the lab.

There are also Phlebotomists in administrative and managerial roles.  They are usually in charge of management of other Phlebotomists on the medical team. Usually Phlebotomists who have become managers or administrators have had several years of experience and have shown professionalism and impeccable skills.

What is the Typical Pay Rate?

In the United States, the average Phlebotomist’s salary is $30,000.   Salary varies greatly between different geographical areas and type of facility.  Your salary will also be determined by your education, experience and skills.

What Type of Education is Required?

The requirements may vary by state and healthcare institution.  The following are the standard basic requirements:

  • High School Diploma or GED
  • Phlebotomy Technician training program (programs are available at many accredited schools and colleges)
  • Certificate of completion for any specialty training that pertains to a Phlebotomy job (this may be optional, depending on the facility)
  • State specific licensing requirements. For example, the state of California requires Phlebotomist to be certified and licensed by the state.

A Phlebotomy Technician is a vital part of the medical team.  If you are interested in an exciting career as a health care professional, this may be job for you.  By understanding the basics about who a Phlebotomy Technician is and what they do, you are one step closer to starting your career. Getting various phlebotomy experience also helps in advancing in your career. Also, career opportunities for this line of career is very vast. That’s why you might also be surprised to see phlebotomy job opportunities that you haven’t heard about.

Phlebotomy is a broad career with vast opportunities for those who really strive hard for it. If you’re dedicated and passionate with what you do, you’ll surely go far with this career. Many success stories have been heard of about phlebotomy; someday we might hear from you, too.

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