Blood is obtained through venous or skin punctures by phlebotomists, often known as phlebotomy technologists.
These specialists are crucial to the healthcare industry, especially in identifying and treating illnesses and ailments.
Phlebotomy services are provided to patients to perform transfusions, give blood or plasma, or test for particular medical diseases.
In addition, phlebotomy technicians must adhere to strict standards when labeling biological samples, using needles and other tools, and entering patient data into databases.
These experts must safely complete their tasks because they handle biological samples.
Working with patients and contributing to their care is fulfilling for many phlebotomists.
Phlebotomists who are kind can allay the worries of patients who frequently feel apprehensive about having their blood drawn.
They might also discuss the significance of blood collection.
Phlebotomists have a promising future in the workforce.
In contrast to other healthcare support jobs, expected to grow by 16% and 8% between 2020 and 2030, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) forecasts a 22% increase in employment in this field.
This article, therefore, shall examine how long it takes to become a phlebotomist, job opportunities, and the salary outlook.
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What is a Phlebotomist School Like?
Phlebotomist aspirants must first pass the GED exam or graduate from high school.
Taking physics and anatomy studies in high school might be beneficial.
Following that, individuals can participate in a phlebotomy program, which typically calls for 4 to 8 months of training and results in certification.
These courses are offered at community colleges, technical schools, and trade schools.
Graduates in phlebotomy who work in California, Louisiana, Nevada, or Washington must be certified to practice.
Professionals in other states should still consider earning a postsecondary degree to improve their work prospects.
The following certifications are available to phlebotomists:
- Certified Phlebotomy Technician I: prepares medical personnel to take blood samples by venous and cutaneous punctures
- Certified Phlebotomy Technician II: teaches experts how to perform cutaneous, venous, and artery punctures to collect blood.
- Limited Phlebotomy Technician: teaches doctors how to perform skin punctures to collect blood.
The written and practical exams needed for certification must be passed.
About 300 questions are on the written exam, while the clinical portion demands demonstrations of sample labeling, sanitization techniques, and skin and venous blood draw.
An organization from which a phlebotomist can obtain certification includes:
- American Certification Agency for Healthcare Professionals
- American Medical Technologists
- American Society for Clinical Pathology
- American Society of Phlebotomy Technicians
- National Center for Competency Testing
- National Healthcareer Association
- National Phlebotomy Association
Phlebotomists, especially those who need to renew their certification, must do continuing education to keep current in their area.
States have different standards for continuing phlebotomist education, although many practitioners are required to earn roughly six credits a year.
To fulfill these requirements, phlebotomists might be able to attend conferences or enroll in courses at community colleges or vocational institutions.
Also, See: How Long Does It Take To Become A Psychologist?
Is Attending a Phlebotomist School Worth It?
Students can enter the medical sector quickly and affordably by enrolling in phlebotomy courses, and hundreds do so.
It’s hardly surprising that many young individuals decide to start their medical careers as phlebotomists, given a chance to save lives and the possibility of graduating debt-free.
Even though phlebotomy school is substantially shorter than medical school, both programs cover some of the same content.
Phlebotomists must be well-versed in medical language, safe procedures, and interpersonal abilities.
Short but frequently rigorous classes prepare students for the demanding yet rewarding life ahead of them in the medical sector.
Cleaning practices and disease prevention are taught to phlebotomy students. Keeping donors safe is our top priority.
The Benefits of Attending a Phlebotomist School are;
- Students gain extensive knowledge of human anatomy because phlebotomy is a medical specialty.
- The circulatory system’s veins and arteries are the subjects of in-depth research.
- Phlebotomists will draw, handle, and document bodily fluids daily once they are on the job. The careful handling of potentially dangerous fluids is taught to pupils in schools.
- Despite their training in other fluids, blood is the most common fluid phlebotomists draw. To detect veins and arteries using a needle stick, students are taught how to do so expertly.
- Phlebotomy training emphasizes meticulous record-keeping because many collected samples are used for medical testing.
- Hundreds of donors and patients are handled by phlebotomists every day. They will study strategies to give donors a great school experience and gain customer service skills.
What Schooling Do You Need to Be a Phlebotomist?
Becoming a phlebotomist requires completing certification requirements and receiving the required training.
Classroom education and laboratory work are requirements for certification programs.
Anatomy, medical jargon, and physiology are the subjects covered in most courses.
Students may need to take preparatory courses if they can’t demonstrate algebraic or mathematical proficiency at the high school level.
Receiving on-the-job training instead of enrolling in a phlebotomy program is not customary for people with a high school diploma or GED.
No matter their schooling level, all phlebotomists must follow state laws regulating certification and ongoing education.
How Long Does It Take To Become a Licensed phlebotomist?
It can take four months to a year and a half to become a phlebotomist, depending on the college you attend, the training program you enroll in, and the credentials you seek.
Be prepared to put in three to twelve months of study time and 20 to forty additional hours of courses to earn a certification.
A typical phlebotomy training program comprises around two-thirds classroom instruction and one-third internship and externship-based training.
Anatomy, physiology, medical terminology, and practical instruction will all be a part of your phlebotomy training.
If you want to keep your phlebotomy certification or maintain your ability to practice in your state, you might need to enroll in continuing education classes.
The requirements for retaining your license vary by state.
For instance, unless you test the sample you collect, New York does not need you to obtain a license.
In contrast, California allows you to renew your license every two years with six hours of CEUs.
For detailed information, make sure to visit the website of the state licensing body.
How Much Does It Cost to Become a Licensed phlebotomist?
Online phlebotomy courses can be purchased from various sources for $300–$700.
Although attending classes online allows for greater scheduling flexibility, most online colleges also advise getting hands-on experience.
For instance, the cost of online instruction is $300 at Phlebotomy Services.
The basic and advanced courses at the Family Health Services Training Center are $373 each or $677 for both.
Costs range from $700 to $1400 for phlebotomy technician training at a technical college or institution.
Phlebotomy training courses at Medtech, which has 10 locations in the Midwest and Southeast, cost $825; this price covers books and lab costs.
The American Society for Phlebotomy Technicians charges $800 for a training program, but participants must also pay $35 for association members and $40 for a textbook.
Several technical institutes offer phlebotomy courses as a component of larger medical assistance programs.
The cost of the six quarters of study in the medical assistant program at Heald College in California, Oregon, and Hawaii, one of which is devoted to phlebotomy, is $29,400.
Furthermore, there are opportunities for financial help for degree-based programs.
Salary and Job Outlook for Phlebotomist after Study
Phlebotomists make an average salary of $37,380 annually as of May 2021.
Phlebotomist salaries can vary depending on your location at work and home.
The yearly mean compensation for phlebotomists in outpatient care facilities and medical and diagnostic labs ranges from $38,040 to $38,220.
The pay may be less in some places, such as hospitals and doctor’s offices.
Even though this income is less than the national average, it is still competitive with salaries for jobs in the healthcare industry.
By 2030, the agency does anticipate that there will be more job openings for phlebotomists than the average for all occupations.
In 2020, there were 129.600 jobs; in the following eight years, that number is projected to rise by 28.800.
In conclusion, the typical time to become a phlebotomist is one year.
Many phlebotomy programs can be finished in one or two semesters, which can take anywhere from four to eight months.
Many professionals pursue certifications after completing phlebotomy school to increase their employment eligibility.
Furthermore, more time may be needed to get ready and study for a certification exam.
Frequently Asked Questions
Depending on your school, phlebotomy school lasts one to two semesters or 4 to 8 months. You will receive a certificate—not a certification—that will enable you to work with patients in various settings, including hospitals, blood banks, and labs.
Certification is worthwhile if you want a reliable income and work stability. According to BLS data from 2020, a phlebotomist made $36,320 annually and $17.46 per hour.
Sometimes it can be challenging to find employment as a phlebotomist because there aren’t many openings and too many skilled candidates. The completion of a phlebotomy program and the possession of extra certifications are advantages in this situation.
A vein must be punctured with a cannula to draw blood, typically in the arm. This procedure is known as phlebotomy. Venipunctures, which are utilized for intravenous therapy, is the actual procedure.
Ampath Laboratories seeks applicants to take part in its Phlebotomy Technician Learnership program. Permanent work is a possibility after completing this two-year program. Successful candidates participate in classroom and on-the-job training and training in a medical lab.
As a component of the patient’s overall care team, phlebotomy technicians collaborate with other professionals in hospital and outpatient settings to collect and prepare blood samples for laboratory testing. The Phlebotomy Technician Certificate Program fully equips students with a career in this area.