If you are interested in pursuing a career in the health industry, becoming a phlebotomist is one of the career options you can choose. If you are a high school student in Florida, this article outlines what this job entails, and provides all the important information you need to know if you are interested in it.
Phlebotomists work under the supervision of a physician, medical technologist or clinical pathologist. Their main responsibility is to collect samples and transporting the same to a laboratory for analysis.
Some of the tasks that are performed by phlebotomists include:
- drawing blood from donors or patients in a blood bank, hospital, healthcare clinic, or similar healthcare facility for medical or research purposes.
- assembling laboratory equipment, such as needles, tourniquets, gauze, cotton, disposable or re-usable containers for keeping needles, alcohol, and blood collection devices on the work trays, according to the specific requirements different tests or procedures.
- verifying or recording the identity of donors or patients
- conversing with, and reassuring donors or patients to allay their fears of procedures
- applying tourniquets to arms, locating accessible veins, swabbing puncture areas with antiseptic, inserting needles into veins to draw blood into collection bags or tubes.
- withdrawing needles, applying the necessary treatments to puncture sites, and labeling blood containers.
- transporting and storing blood collecting containers in the laboratory for subsequent processing or analysis.
- pricking fingers to draw blood
- conducting interviews, taking vital signs, and drawing and testing blood samples to screen donors at blood banks.
Phlebotomists in supervisory and managerial positions may be required to supervise junior laboratory staff members, and teach aspiring phlebotomists.
Phlebotomist Training and Educational Requirements in Florida
The state of Florida does not have specific requirements for licensing of phlebotomists. However, most employers demand proof of phlebotomy training from job seekers, especially if you plan to work out of state say in Orange County or Houston. It is almost impossible to get a lucrative phlebotomy job in a hospital or blood bank without proper training.
If you have a high school diploma and you are willing to learn on the job, you can easily get your first job as a phlebotomist. But if you want to pursue a well-paying career as a phlebotomist, you must satisfactorily complete training in a community college, vocational school or health facility. If you have worked as a part-time phlebotomist for one year or as a full-time phlebotomist for six months, phlebotomy training may be waived.
Some of the schools that offer accredited phlebotomy programs in Florida include Miami-Dade College, Brevard Community College, Florida Medical Training Institute and Sarasota County Technical Institute. Once you have completed your training, you can seek certification from any of the national credentialing agencies, including American Society of Phlebotomy Technicians, American Society of Clinical Pathologists or the National Credentialing Agency for Laboratory Personnel.
Florida Phlebotomist Salary Information
Phlebotomists’ salaries vary from one medical institution to another, and your level of experience. Phlebotomists working in physicians’ offices, private clinics and laboratories earn between $10 and $14 per hour. Large hospitals and blood banks pay the best, and you could earn as high as $18 working in these institutions. Phlebotomy managers and supervisors earn between $35 000 and $45 000. Overtime is paid premium rates, and there are plenty of opportunities to do so in phlebotomy all around the country especially in Charlotte NC.
Phlebotomy Jobs Outlook in Florida
The demand for phlebotomists is expected to increase in Florida as is the case in other parts of the country. Many private clinics and physician offices that are coming up will require both full-time and part-time phlebotomists. There will also be a need to replace the large number of people who leaving this job for higher paying positions in the health sector, or other fields.
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