Medical jobs do not necessarily take years of schooling. If you don’t want to spend too much time at school, then the phlebotomy technician job is a great career path in the medical field you should consider.
What is a Phlebotomy Technician?
A phlebotomy technician, or phlebotomist, who has gone through sufficient phlebotomy training, is the one to draw blood by venipuncture for transfusions, diagnostic tests, blood donations, or experimental procedures. As doctors need blood work for patients day in, day out, phlebotomy technician jobs play a critical role in the healthcare industry.
What do phlebotomy technicians do?
Typical phlebotomy technicians tasks and duties include:
- Explaining procedures to patients
- Calming patients that might be nervous about needles
- Prepping lab equipment
- Gauging a patient’s reaction to the blood draw
- Taking blood pressure, pulse, and respiration readings
- Drawing blood
- Applying bandages after blood is drawn
- Sending blood, urine, or fecal samples to the lab for testing
- Sterilizing equipment and cleaning workspaces
- Updating patient medical records
Where do phlebotomy technicians work?
Phlebotomy technicians can choose to work in various work settings such as hospitals, clinics, doctors’ offices, nursing homes, private home care, medical labs, blood donation centers, research institutes, and insurance companies.
Most of the time, they are on their feet, interacting with patients or preparing samples to send to the lab. Any place where blood is drawn can be a phlebotomy technician’s working location.
Phlebotomists who work at hospitals and medical centers often work 40 hours per week. Depending on where they work, phlebotomists may have a regular day shift, a day or two off, and then a few night shifts. At some blood centers, Phlebotomists can apply for a part-time position.
How much does a phlebotomist earn?
Phlebotomy is an expanding field with excellent career opportunities and great earnings. According to the BLS, the employment of phlebotomists is expected to grow 17 percent from 2019 to 2029, which is much faster than the average for all occupations. On average, until May 2021, a phlebotomist in the US earns $35,606 per year, while the highest-paid amount can go up to $43,562.
A phlebotomy technician job is seen as an entry-level job. Yet, there are numerous opportunities for them to move up. They can start out as phlebotomy technicians and make efforts to become phlebotomy supervisors or medical assistants. Or else, they can have a fulfilling career by staying a phlebotomy technician.
What are the education requirements for phlebotomy technicians?
To become a phlebotomy technician, you must have a high school degree or equivalent and complete a phlebotomy training program. These programs are typically offered through community colleges, vocational schools, and technical schools, and they often take from four months to a year to complete.
Also, some states require phlebotomists to have certification. In order to earn a certification, they need to pass an exam which can be offered by several organizations such as the National Center for Competency Testing, the National Healthcareer Association, the National Phlebotomy Association, or the American Medical Technologists. Even if your state doesn’t demand a certificate, becoming certified gives you chances to get a better job or to be paid higher, so it’s worth your trying.
If you see bloody scenes too scary, think about some other jobs that don’t deal with blood. If you like working with people and blood is no big deal, then becoming a phlebotomist is a great way to get started in the medical field.