When there is an increased need in a medical office for drawing blood samples then on-the-job training is often provided by an experienced staff member to supplement classroom or off-site training, or sometimes as the only form of training. In this case the training is rather informal and focused mainly on simply drawing the blood specimens and handling the day to day dealings associated with the task without providing any other practical information.
Re: Phlebotomy Learned in Just 1-2 Weeks?
Posted by RPT to our Medical Assistant Web Forum:
Mar 21st, 2007 - 10:18 PM
"As a trained phlebotomist, which is a person with specialized training and certification in phlebotomy (all others are blood drawers/collectors), I have run into stumbling blocks in obtaining a position. It is not only a low paying, disrespected position, but is also a job that obviously can be given to just anyone, which may explain why so many competent people can't find jobs in this field."
"I have heard of one hospital trying to save money by training their janitorial staff to do the blood drawing. Only 2 states have gone as far as to make it the law that you HAVE to be FULLY trained and certified in order to get a job as a phlebotomist. No longer will they allow just anyone to go through a weekend training session and by Monday morning they are probing the veins of ICU patients."
Watch this short phlebotomy video clip!
A phlebotomist jokes before the needle stick, but then the joke is briefly on her.
ATTENTION: Please realize that this video (published from YouTube) is NOT HERE TO TEACH you phlebotomy techniques, but merely to show you different scenarios of the phlebotomist's daily routine. The video may contain techniques, or procedures that do not conform to proper, and safe venipuncture protocol. Viewer discretion is strongly advised.
Pitfalls of Inadequate Training on the Job
As of this day just about anybody can be trained to become a phlebotomist. However, most facilities prefer to hire properly trained and experienced professionals over those that lack this education, as they shun errors and the consequences of potential lawsuits stemming from phlebotomy injuries. Formal credit, such as certificates, degrees, diplomas, etc., is indeed important. To put someone on the job without proper training to let them do the job and learn-it as they go along opens the door for a lot of mistakes which will ultimately not only hurt the people involved, but also hurt the profits, clients, and the business's reputation with the public.
"Most don't realize that the person sticking the needle in their arm today could have been flipping burgers last week", said Dennis Ernst, a veteran phlebotomist who runs a phlebotomy resource center in Ramey, IN. [From The Washington Post Company, Tuesday, June 1, 2004]
"Getting the needle in is only half of the job. Handling the blood sample to avoid contamination, spills, or sample mix-ups is the next challenge", said Harris-Lyne, of Northern Virginia Community College. [From The Washington Post Company, Tuesday, June 1, 2004.]
Filling the void fast: It is astonishing that there is so little regulation in this highly technical skill. When on-the-job venipuncture training is provided, for example by another phlebotomist, nurse, or doctor, it usually happens because there was an urgent need for another phlebotomist in a busy medical practice, or clinic. This training usually is provided by the person who has so far handled the blood draws in the medical office. Many area hospitals and plasma donor centers also provide on-the-job training to create more phlebotomists for their blood donation events.
Read: Drawing Without a License Phlebotomists Get Little Training, Regulation By Ranit Mishori Special to The Washington Post Tuesday, June 1, 2004; Page HE01