Phlebotomists play an important role in all types of medical care. The primary role of a phlebotomist is to draw blood from patients, keep in relevant phlebotomy tubes and then transfer it to the nearby laboratory for testing. Since the blood sample is a common and effective way of determining patients’ health conditions and the accuracy of the blood report largely depends on the efficiency of the phlebotomists. Most of the aspiring phlebotomists undergo proper training from reputed and reliable medical school, healthcare organizations, etc. so that they can perform their duties with perfection and dedication.
Huge career prospects
Working in healthcare is challenging at the same time rewarding too. Most of the health professionals come across different patients of all age group, gender, profession, health conditions, etc. at a regular basis and hence along with in-depth knowledge in related healthcare field medical staffs including phlebotomists should develop good interpersonal skills such as:
- Work Ethic
- Open to feedback
- Body language
- Pleasing personality
Healthcare is the fastest growing job sector, and with the right approach and training, everyone can build a solid career as a phlebotomist.
Know about cross contaminated
As a phlebotomist, it is crucial to know the significance of each color on the top of the phlebotomy tube so that they can choose right tube for right tests such as coagulant blood tests, anticoagulant blood tests or other types of tests. Each color symbolizes the presence of certain additives and the hence for avoiding cross-contamination it is highly recommended to be well informed about the order of draw. The proper order is
- Red-gray or gold –SST
- Dark green-sodium heparin
- Light green- PST
- Lavender- EDTA
- Pale yellow- ACDA or ACDB
- Light gray- oxalate/fluoride
With effective training, phlebotomists will be able to understanding which color tube fits which test and will eliminate the chance of mistake in the report.
- Yellow top tube – Use to be cultured for the presence of microorganisms
- Light blue tube- Prothrombin Time, Partial Thromboplastin Time, Fibrin Degradation products, Thrombin Time and Bleeding Time
- Lavender top tube- RBC, CBC, WCS, H&H, ESR, PLATELET COUNT and SICKLE CELL SCREENING
- Green top tubes- Chemistry test performed Ammonia, Carboxyhemoglobin and Stat Electrolytes
- Gray top tube- Fasting Blood Sugar, Glucose Tolerance Test, Blood alcohol levels and Lactic acid
Common types of equipment
For the safety of the patients and their safety phlebotomists should adhere to all the laboratory safety procedures. The role and responsibilities of phlebotomists start from patient identification procedures, labeling of tubes, preparing patients, selection of site, sterilization of puncture sites, selection of proper equipment, drawing blood, care of patients after completion of venipuncture, infection control procedures and lastly transporting the samples to the destination at perfect condition.
Some of the common equipment widely used in phlebotomy are:
- Phlebotomy tubes
- Alcohol Wipes
- Povidone-iodine wipes/swabs
- Gauze sponges
- Adhesive bandages/tape
- Needle disposal unit