Help on becoming a phlebotomist

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Winston Smith

i didn't do it
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Apr 18, 2002
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I called up my local blood bank and was told that they only train you to become a phlebotomist if you're an employee. I then inquired on what job positions are available and they told me the lowest worker there is a Medical Assistant. Is this the same for all blood banks? I really want to become a phlebotomist but I understand that becoming a medical assistant requires one full college semester, which might interfere with my studies. Any advice?

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I also called up my local hospitals but to no avail. Please help!
look for programs at a local community college
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Ok, I just did. The community colleges don't have it offered this fall...I checked the vocational schools also. The vocational schools don't offer phlebotomy but they do offer Medical Assisting, which I'm told is interrelated. Anyhow, the problem is that the course is 10 months long (remember I'm still in school!). I found one that has it in 3 months but it's not accreddited and the cost is over the top (over $400).

The one that has it in 10 months is fairly cheap ($85). I like the price but I sort of wanted to start working immediately. I'm entering my third year right now so I really wanted the experience as well as the money.

Any other suggestions? Thanks for your help.

I'm not sure where you're at right now, but I'm from California and there's good opportunities for phlebotomy classes from Boston Reed .

I recently took the course, which was completed over a weekend with 2 8-hour days. It was a very painful process (since your classmates are the ones that stick you) -- so no matter how good you are, you'll get large hematomas... I had one guy stick the needle in my arm at a 90` angle, hitting a nerve, and making my entire arm to go numb for 4 hours. Good times.

Anyway, the class was $295 and a doctor is there for the last day of instruction. You need 12-15 sticks to get certified and there's no CE hours needed to sustain your certificate. Most hospitals/blood banks, etc won't hire you until you have 50 sticks, so you can volunteer to get your other 35 or so sticks with the Red Cross and you can probably get the sticks in the matter of a few hours.

Good luck and feel free to PM with any questions.


I just re-read your original post and I just wanted to let you know that it is worth it to take the course, even though you are a full time student. I was taking 22 units working towards my B.S. and I also took a semester long EMT course at the same time. It was a highly stressful time, but completely worth it in the end. If you can hold off on a couple classes until the next semester then I'd recommend taking the class.
At the hospital where i work, i started as a transporter. They then trained me, on site, to do phleb -- anyone else?
Check local hospitals. Often the hospitals have a separate company in charge of the lab work within the hospital. They often hold classes to train phlebotomists to work for them. I found an ad in a local newspaper under the health care section for a phlebotomy class. It was a little expensive and it did require some time, but well worth it.
I am also from California. I heard about the Boston Reed Company but I really don't want to go through what you did...that has got to be painful. Well, how did you complete all of your sticks? Did you volunteer with the Red Cross? If so, how do you go by doing that? Were you already a member or did you just call them up and they took you?

I'll also check my local paper.
Long time reader, first time poster!!

I'm from the sunshine state also... and I got my Phlebotomy Cert from a program that USC recommended (it was cheap and not that long, but you had to have an EMT cert. first). UCLA offers a class, not too long, little bit more $$, no pre-reqs., but it fills up really fast. The other problem with getting your Phlebotomy Cert is that no one wants to hire you... they want you to have a ton of experience without giving you the chance to get the experience... I suggest calling your local University and see if they have any classes and check to see if the class get you hired.