Nature of the Work
The primary function of phlebotomy technicians is to obtain patient blood specimens by venipuncture or micro-techniques. They aid in the collection and transportation of other laboratory specimens and may be involved with patient data entry. Phlebotomy technicians also draw blood for transfusions, donations, and research. They must like challenge and responsibility. Phlebotomy technicians must be accurate, work well under pressure, and communicate effectively. They must be able to deal with patients and be able to calm patients. Safety is essential, and all safety precautions must be taken to prevent the transmission of infectious diseases.
Duties differ by doctor's office, hospital, or laboratory, but may include:
- Drawing blood from patients or donors for medical purposes.
- Assembling equipment such as needles, blood collection devices, gauze, tourniquets, cotton, and alcohol.
- Verifying or recording identity of patients or donors.
- Conversing with patients to allay fears about the procedures.
- Applying tourniquets to arms, locating veins, swabbing areas with disinfectant, and inserting needles into veins to draw blood into collection tubes.
- Labeling and storing blood containers for processing.
- Conducting interviews, taking vital signs, and testing blood samples to screen donors at a blood bank.
- Analyzing information and making appropriate recommendations.