August 21, 2017

Certified Phlebotomy Technician II

What many phlebotomy students do not realize is that there are a number of states that do not have a set of official guideline or regulation for those that practice phlebotomy, except for the state of California. According to the State Department of Public Health in phlebotomists working and living in the state of California are required to do the following:

1. Enroll and attend a training program from an accredited phlebotomy program
2. Have a considerable amount of experience in the field
3. Once they have completed their training they must pass the certification exam

There are 3 levels of certification that can be obtained and they include:

1. LPT (Limited Phlebotomy Technician)

2. Certified technician I

3. Certified Technician II

Educational Requirements and Basic Coursework

1. High school diploma or GED

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • English
  • Computer science
  • Algebra
  • Geometry

Foreign languages, this is optional however it would be helpful since the medical career involved helping patients from various backgrounds.

Phlebotomy Technician I

The requirement for obtaining this certification includes:

1. Attend an approved program by the Department of Public Health. Speak with the department’s counselor to get a list of the approved programs.

2. You must have a minimum of 20 hours within the basic classes mentioned above

3. 20 hour minimum in advanced courses

4. If you currently have over 1,000 hrs. of experience working on the job then you only need to make sure that you have completed the advanced coursework requirements.

After Graduation

Congratulations! Just because you have graduated does not mean that you have completed your requirements. There are requirements for those that have recently graduated (these must have been completed on patients) to successfully hold their phlebotomy technician certification:

1. You must perform 50 venipunctures

2. 10 skin punctures

3. Take and successfully pass the written form of the phlebotomy exam


4. Complete an additional 20 hours of advance course work

Phlebotomy Technician II

1. The 20 hours must be completed just as your other coursework for phlebotomy; through a program approved by the Department of Public Health.

2. You will not be able to be admitted into the advance courses until you have submitted proof of your phlebotomy certification I.

3. On-the-job experience: minimum of 1,040 hrs.

4. 20 supervised arterial punctures: this punctures must be supervised by one of the following:

  • Licensed Medical Doctor
  • Physician Assistant
  • Registered Nurse
  • (CLB) Clinical Laboratory Bioanalyst
  • CLS (Clinical Laboratory Scientist)
  • RCP (Respiratory Care Practitioner)

5. Successfully pass the written exam from a certifying organization in your state. When you apply you need to submit your certificate of successful completion from your training program.

6. When applying you will need the $54 fee upon application submission, 2 photos (passport size) and (of course) the application itself completely filled out. Then you can submit your information in full to your states Department of Health Services.

7. Provide information on the following:

  • High school diploma (official copy) or GED
  • Certificate as mentioned above
  • A document verifying that you have completed:
  • 50 venipunctures
  • 20 arterial punctures
  • 10 skin punctures

Venipuncture What You Need to Know

What is Venipunture?

The process in which blood is drawn from a vein in order to provide a sample for testing is known as Venipuncture. It is also a process used for providing medication and/or starting an infusion. This process can be performed by different medical professionals in hospitals, private practices and other medical facilities that include:

  • Laboratory technicians
  • Licensed practical nurses
  • Registered nurses

Why Is This Process Needed?

More often this procedure is asked of by physicians for help in diagnosing illnesses and diseases or for a simple evaluation procedure of the patient’s health. As you may have already learned in school, blood is the bodies main component in moving waste and nutrients through the body. The various components that make up blood indicate how healthy the patient is or what illnesses they may be suffering from.

What Are The Risks Of the Procedure?

No vein is created equal; they come in various shapes and sizes. It is not uncommon for professional phlebotomists to have a difficulty in finding a vein. This can cause numerous attempts to puncture the patients vein. Some of the other risks include some of the following:

  • Fainting
  • Bleeding excessively
  • Infection

The Proper Techniques to Follow

As you will learn once you enroll in a phlebotomy program there are several techniques that need to be followed to ensure accuracy in the labs and effective health management. It must be understood the various factors such as the condition of the patient’s skin, poor sampling and contamination from outside sources can affect the integrity of the lab results. Below are in detail about the factors mentioned above:

  • When handling blood or any other bodily fluids a level of infection control MUST be maintained. This means that prior to collecting a sample from the patient it is important that you wash your hands thoroughly and dry them. If they become dirty at any point during the process they should be discarded immediately.
  • Prior to drawing blood identify the patient, ask them their name, date of birth and compare their answers to the information located on their chart and/or lab order form. Many private practices require patients to provide another form of identification.
  • Look over the patient order form or report to confirm the test that needs to be done on the patient. This often tells you how much blood needs to be drawn. Have the labels and color coded containers ready. Once the blood has been drawn place the label on them immediately to avoid confusion later.
  • If you notice damage to any of the tubes prior to the draw do not use the tubes, simply discard them per your companies or employers instructions and use un-damaged tubes. The seals found on the top of the tubes should not be torn or punctured in anyway.
  • Be sure to answer any questions the patient may have about the process, prepare their skin for the process with bedadine. Allow skin to dry completely before the draw.

Phlebotomy Earnings and Outlook

If you are looking at a career in phlebotomy you would be entering into a field with outstanding amount of job growth that is expected to increase as the years pass. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics the growth within the field is expected to have a steady increase over the following 8-10 years. Once you have completed all of the required training in the field, there are various opportunities that you will find in a medical facilities that include hospitals, clinics, private practices and laboratories.

Phlebotomy Job Prospects

Employment in the field as a technician is said to also improve by 16% through the year 2018. It is important to note that this increase may become more rapid as other areas in the medical field continue to grow. As the increase for other medical employment areas grow so will the demand for research labs and medical tests, this is also due to the increasing age of the baby boomer generation and the creation of more advanced laboratory testing.

Modern Technology

Technology is an area in the medical field that will continue to improve and these improvements will directly impact the field of the phlebotomy technician field. There are two ways technology will impact the industry:

Diagnostic screenings will mean more exams will need to be done which will mean more employment opportunities will open and the need for well-trained phlebotomists.
It should be noted that there is a downside to the advancement in technology. As the technology advances it would mean that the currently employed medical professionals will be able to easily execute the tests on their own which would mean that there would be no need to have the tests outsourced to those skilled specifically in the phlebotomy field. It may be in the best interest for you to train and educate yourself in various areas within the medical field.

The environment that phlebotomy will still remain a much desired area for employment is in major hospitals another various organization and private laboratories. Job opportunities in the phlebotomy will tend to be very favorable each year since there are more job openings then there are new phlebotomy technicians being certified. This seems to be an ongoing trend in the field.


Private practices will not be the only area for growth possibilities. It is predicted that with the large amount of individuals entering into retirement, over the next 10 years or so, the need will continue to grow in the private sectors of the medical field. The number of opportunities available to you will also depend on the area you live in and if you are willing and/or have the ability to relocate to where the need is much greater. You will find that larger cities tend to have greater need than those in more rural areas.

In conclusion, the information above should provide you with some insight into the future outlook your career as a phlebotomy technician. This is a field that may offer up a variety of opportunities for those first entering in the medical field or for those looking to make a career change.

An Introduction into the World of Phlebotomy

What Is Phlebotomy?

Phlebotomy is a much needed area in the medical field. Professional Phlebotomist draws the patient’s blood for use in medical tests so that physicians are able to properly diagnose illnesses and diseases. It is the job of the phlebotomist to perform and learn the following tasks:

  • Draw the blood
  • Manage blood draws and patient information
  • Store blood safely so that outside issues will not disrupt the process
  • In training you would learn how to properly obtain blood, transport or prepare it for transport and perform laboratory tasks and test the blood samples.
  • Learn and understand how the blood test works, possible abnormalities that may or may not be present and how blood samples are to be handled (additives and storing temperature).
  • Have an understanding of the various methods in which specimens are to be taken.

While it may seem like a lot, it is important to note that all of the above aspects will need to be followed so that you will have the ability to handle various cases as they arise.

Phlebotomy Techniques

What many fail to understand is that Phlebotomy is simply drawing blood from a patient when this is not the case. There are several methods or techniques that need to be learned when collecting samples.

Venipuncture

This is a procedure when used in the collection of blood from the veins and is one of the most typical methods used by professionals in the field. Professionals are taught about the various veins throughout the body and the ideal areas where blood can be drawn effectively. They are also taught the methods in which to prepare the patient for having their blood drawn.

The most common vein is in the forearm, and this is known as the “anti-cubical vein”. It is the vein that is closest to the top/surface of the skin. The general amount of blood required to perform an accurate test is 5-25 mm. however, the amount depends on the type of test that needs to be performed.

Training

In order to have a successful career in Phlebotomy in the medical field, one has to have professional training in the field. In order to enroll in a training course you have to have at least a high school diploma or GED. Training can be found at any of the following:

  • Vocational schools
  • Universities
  • Community colleges
  • Hospital
  • Medical labs
  • Online schools

Research is required in order to find an institution that provides you with the courses required to understand the basics of phlebotomy and the advanced subjects. The actual length of time in the program will vary depending on the state you live in. The typical amount of time for these programs is 2-4 months and involves drawing numerous samples in various hands-on training in the courses.

For those looking at a career in the Phlebotomy field there is an increase in the demand for phlebotomy professionals in labs, private practices and other medical facilities. The pay is good and the possibility for growth abounds.

Educational Requirements for Phlebotomy Technicians

What are the educational requirements for phlebotomy technicians?

For those that are getting their certification as a phlebotomy tech, you will have to first complete extensive training in the field. The training you get is required in order for you to obtain any type of certification and is a requirement in order for you to obtain employment at various medical offices. It should be noted that some private employers will provide you with a means of obtaining an education in this field while working in another area of the office. The type of training you receive will be different depending on the school you enroll into a training program at. Below you will find information on the general courses you will cover (please note that the names may be different than the courses offered at your school).

Computer and Technology Training

Since many of the larger medical facilities make use of computers to help keep track of patient records and other important data, it is required that phlebotomists entering into the field have a significant amount of knowledge in computers. This knowledge can be found in computer training course which may cover the following:

  • Data entry
  • Tracking and creating reports
  •  Updates documents and patient medical history records

Safety in the Laboratory

Phlebotomist must have the ability to adapt to various areas of the lab which includes being comfortable with the equipment used in the lab along with the safety procedures. You may be required to clean and dispose of spills that may be hazardous. This is important for not only your safety but for the safety of those on your team.

Taking Blood Samples & Composition

Depending on the patient and the test being performed you will learn how the collection will need to be taken. An example of the patient differences would be if you have an adult patient you will have one approach and if you are would working with a child patient you will have to have a different approach. You have to have an understanding of the procedure to get the sample taken in a way that is quick and painless for the patient. You will also need to learn how to work with the patient if they are nervous or unsure of the process by answering any questions that may have.

When it comes to composition you have to be able to understand how the blood sample you have the possibility of being affected. These possible threats by pathogens will be taught along with the teaching of the various components in the sample.

Anatomy of Humans


Many training courses will include a focus on the anatomy. As part of your job you will be working with a vein which is a vital part of the human circulatory system and how it functions. This will aid you in the collection of the sample and the increased chance you have of collecting the sample with little to no issues. You will also cover the some of the following:

  •  Skeletal and muscular system
  •  Urinary tract
  •  Respiratory system
  •  Lymphatic system