Q:

How do you train to become a Phlebotomist?

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To become a phlebotomist, an individual is required to earn a post-secondary non-degree award from a phlebotomy program, attain professional certification and complete on-the-job training. A person can also become a phlebotomist with a high school diploma by completing on-the-job training.

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Post-secondary non-degree awards for phlebotomists are often offered at vocational schools, community colleges and technical schools. Such programs usually last less than a year and instruct students on medical terminology, anatomy and physiology. Once students complete all required courses, they are awarded with a diploma or certificate.

A majority of employers prefer phlebotomists who are certified. Certification applicants are usually required to have clinical experience as well as the proper education. Practical components and an exam are usually part of the certification test, but these requirements can vary according to the organization offering certification. Such organizations include the American Society for Clinical Pathology, the National Center for Competency Testing and the American Medical Technologists.

Besides drawing blood, phlebotomists also label blood for testing and processing. They enter patient and blood information into a database and make sure medical instruments are well-maintained. Phlebotomists draw blood for transfusions, blood donations and for medical research. They might also be required to assist patients if the patient reacts poorly to having his blood drawn.

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