How do I become a Phlebotomist?

What is a Phlebotomist?
Phlebotomists are people trained to draw blood from a patient (mostly from veins) for clinical or medical testing, transfusions, donations, or research.

Phlebotomists collect blood primarily by performing venepuncture, which is the process of inserting a needle or device into a vein for drawing blood.

How do I train?
In the UK there are no formal requirements or qualifications to become a Phlebotomist. You do not necessarily need to have experience in care or be a Nurse. Many employers within the healthcare setting put their staff through formal training to ensure they can do the skill alongside other elements of their role. It is usually required that you attend a theoretical/ simulation training session. Following this, you will then usually be required to complete a specified number of supervised venepunctures (by a competent person) before you can then do the skill unsupervised.

To enquire about the Venepuncture courses Ashfield offer, please call 0800 012 6085.

What qualifications do I need?
As mentioned above, there are normal qualifications required. However, this can vary depending on the employer. Before undertaking any training, we would suggest contacting the organisation you are considering and ask about their specific requirements.

What are the requirements?
A Phlebotomist takes blood and other specimen samples from patients to send to laboratories for diagnostic testing.

Other duties for a Phlebotomist include:

  • Interacting with patients to explain the process
  • Reassuring patients who feel nervous or uncomfortable
  • Drawing blood safely and efficiently
  • Taking into account the patients’ wellbeing whilst drawing blood
  • Labelling all samples with the patients’ name and date
  • Transporting samples to laboratories within specified timescales
  • Adhering to health and safety regulations to ensure samples aren’t contaminated

Where can I work?
Once you have completed your training, many organisations employ people to be Phlebotomists. This may be on a permanent, part time or ad hoc basis. Hospitals usually have a Phlebotomy department. However, many other places such as care homes, GP clinics and home care organisations employ Phlebotomists.