A phlebotomist is a healthcare worker who is specifically trained to draw blood that’s needed for medical testing or donation.
A typical phlebotomist’s job description includes:
- Extracting blood from patients, properly storing it, and taking it to the lab for testing
- Verifying a patient’s identity and maintaining records
- Taking vital signs before taking a blood sample
- Delivering blood to the blood bank after drawing blood from donors
- Interviewing patients about their health history
Is Certification Required to Perform these Job Duties?
Phlebotomy certification is only required in California, Louisiana, and Nevada. In other states, most employers prefer to hire those who have earned certification.
Why Become Certified?
Becoming certified shows both employers and patients that a phlebotomist has certain skills and knowledge such as medical terminology, human anatomy, physiology, pathology, and phlebotomy.
National Phlebotomy Organizations
There are several phlebotomy organizations within the United States that administer certification exams. However, not all certifications are accepted in all states, so it’s necessary to find out which ones your state recognizes before sitting for an exam. The organizations are the American Certification Agency, the American Society for Clinical Laboratory Science, the National Phlebotomy Association, the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences, the National Healthcareer Association, the American Medical Technologist, the American Society of Phlebotomy Technicians, and the American Society for Clinical Pathology.
The exam will vary by organization, however, candidates are likely to see questions such as:
- Thixotropic gels form a?
- Antecubital Fossa is defined as?
- What is medical asepsis?
- Sodium nitrate is in what tube color?
- What does NPO mean?
- When a physician orders a drug screen, what bodily fluid is collected from the patient?
- PT is the abbreviation for?
- What is another name for winged infusion set?
- Mode of transportation is defined as?
- Port of entry is what?
- Green tubes have what additives?
- Bloodborne pathogens are?
- Contact precautions are designed to do what?
- How long can the tourniquet remain on the arm during venipuncture?
- The most important thing to remember when performing a capillary puncture is?
- What is edema?
- What are light-sensitive specimens?
- What is informed consent?
- What section of the lab would process a CDC?
- All healthcare workers must vaccinate for which virus?
- What is a fistula?
- What vein is commonly used to draw blood from an obese patient?
- From which part of the body are capillary samples normally collected?
- Before someone donates whole blood, what test is done?
- Cancer patients receive treatment in what section of the hospital?
- What is a graft?
- Swelling from excess fluids is known as?
- What is a prescribed course of action when a patient feels faint during a blood draw?
- What is the correct name for the liquid portion of an anticoagulant?
- What is the proper procedure used when a child needs restraining for a needle stick?
- Phlebotomists are trained in which of the following phases of laboratory testing?
- Why are fasting blood test ordered?
- What does the color coding of needles indicate?
- When performing a skin puncture, the first drop of blood should?
- What type of hepatitis is not a bloodborne pathogen?
- What is the main cause of a collapsed vein during a venipuncture?
- What is a suffix that means blood?
- What is the term for the drugs used to kill disease eating bacteria?
Each organization has its own eligibility requirements, but one they have in common is completing an accredited program found at community colleges and technical schools throughout the country. It takes anywhere from two months to one year to earn a certificate, and classes include Anatomy and Physiology, Introduction to Disease, and Theory of Phlebotomy.
To learn more about becoming a certified phlebotomist, please contact us.