How to become a Phlebotomist
Do you work well under pressure and have good hand-eye coordination? Are you methodical and precise when it comes to following procedures and instructions? Well, learning how to become a Phlebotomist could use these skills to create a career for you in the high demand health care industry.
What is a Phlebotomist or Pathology Collector?
A pathology collector/phlebotomist is a medical professional who is responsible for collecting biological samples like blood, urine or swabs from patients. These samples are used for laboratory processing and diagnosis.
As a phlebotomist or pathology collector you would carefully follow the set procedures to ensure no contamination or mix ups happen, as well as comply with strict hygiene regulations. Aside from collecting biological samples, it would be your responsibility to label them accurately, deliver samples within set time frames and maintain computerised records of the different tests that have been done.
Apart from their scientific responsibilities, a phlebotomist or pathology collector would also have to chat with patients explaining the procedures being carried out and answering questions or concerns they have. Some patients may also require instructions on how to properly collect samples like urine.
A career in phlebotomy or pathology collection would require you to have keen attention to detail and the ability to follow instructions and procedures accurately. Because of the delicate nature of the procedures that you would undertake, a steady hand and good practical skills would be key.
As a phlebotomist or pathology collector you would need to have a sympathetic and calm manner as well as good communication skills. You would deal with people of all ages and backgrounds and with different types of illnesses.
Hours & Conditions:
Phlebotomists or pathology collectors are usually employed full time or part time in hospitals, medical and diagnostic laboratories, blood donation centers, medical facilities and doctors’ offices. These work environments can be hectic so you would need to be able to perform your duties efficiently and accurately even when under pressure.
You will usually render the standard number of hours every week but depending on your responsibilities you may be asked to work on weekends or evenings on a shift basis. You will also be required to have certain immunisations and comply with strict handling guidelines.
How to become a Phlebotomist: Qualifications
To become a phlebotomist you would need to accomplish your VET qualification in laboratory technology or laboratory operations. Distance education may be available. Entry requirements are different but employers usually require a junior secondary school certificate or equivalent.
To look at courses that will help you find a role as a phlebotomist, check out
The job outlook for phlebotomists and pathology collectors is expected to have strong growth. Doctors require more blood and tissue tests in order to properly diagnose illness and diseases and as a result, hospitals and diagnostic facilities will need the skills of phlebotomists.