Medical practitioners have been collecting blood since the beginning of medicine. But the professional practice of phlebotomy is very new. Along with the advances in medicine itself, the practice of phlebotomy has advanced with it. A career in phlebotomy is now a secure, respected and diverse profession offering practitioners the chance to help both the individuals suffering from illnesses as well as the researchers who are attempting to create cures.
A career in phlebotomy offers opportunities to work in clinical labs or chemistry labs, blood banks or pathology. Understanding the needs of these different aspects of medical practice will help the phlebotomist make educated decisions about what atmosphere is right for them.
No matter what the job market looks like and how fast technology grows, human beings continue to require quality healthcare. Blood and bones are not getting any more high tech than they are right now. Seeking a career in the healthcare field gives you a broad spectrum to choose from. Phlebotomy technicians are among the happiest medical technicians you can find.
Phlebotomy degrees can be obtained through online course study or classroom learning. Phlebotomists learn to collect blood samples safely for both technician and patient. While some collection techniques will be straight forward, others will necessitate special considerations. Collecting blood from infants, for example, can be challenging. Also, oncology patients and others with chronic illness may have special needs associated with their blood draw. Phlebotomy training and certification will prepare you for all of these needs. Most training programs can be completed in one year, or 26 hours of credited course work.
Phlebotomy training will include everything from correct patient identification to venipuncture procedures and specimen labeling. Any one mistake in this link could lead to a patient’s severe adverse reaction or even death. The practice of phlebotomy, while routine, is also highly dependent on accurate, precise details.
While every phlebotomist will acquire their own routine, some tasks are dependent on a specific order. For example, a successful blood draw must be collected according to tube type (size and color coded) so as to avoid cross contamination of additives between tubes. It will be part of the job of the phlebotomist to memorize the different tube categories and what their additives are; erroneous test results may occur if the blood is not thoroughly mixed with the additive.
A phlebotomist has to assess the accuracy of the blood sampling and they also are charged with counseling the patient through the procedure. Making casual conversation while checking the identification of the patient, filling in the correct forms, labeling the tubes and double checking the accuracy of all the data is not easy. There is a psychological imperative to professional conduct which, at the same time, cannot compromise the technical aspect of the job.
Phlebotomy is a career that demands flexibility and rigidity; professionalism and people-skills. There is an array of settings to work in, great benefit packages to choose from, and satisfaction and reward to be gained.
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