When you first enter the Phlebotomy profession, you are slightly limited as to what else you can do. As you gain more experience, however, you will be able to open yourself up to new opportunities.
Of course, higher pay comes with these advancements. The more experience and education you have, the more career choices will become available.
Your phlebotomy schooling contained biology, anatomy, and other healthcare and medical classes. This means that you already have some of the skills needed to advance in your career faster. All that you need to do now is gain the relevant skills and experience.
Anything from supervising to becoming an RN or hospital lab technician is an option. You could also work for various positions in blood banks.
We will go into more detail about some of the different ways that you can advance, and what additional schooling, if any, that you will need.
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Career Advancement Opportunities for Phlebotomists
As you gain experience working as a phlebotomist, you will be able to take classes for certification to move to higher positions.
Here are some of your employment options:
You will draw samples of blood from patients, whether in a blood lab or as a blood donor specialist. You will have already had schooling for the required skills, and will only need experience.
Some jobs will only need about one year, but for others will require 7 to 10 years of experience.
Medical Lab Technician (MLT)
A career in MLT includes some further education, but it is well worth it. You will be analyzing blood and other body fluids. This includes recording all findings and reporting it to the medical doctor.
You may also study blood that will be used for transfusions, which will require you to differentiate blood types, cell count, and blood compatibility.
You will need to know how to use other equipment in the lab, for more detailed analyzation. There are also computerized tools that perform many tests at the same time. You will be responsible for recording all findings and reporting them to physicians.
If you would like to be in different atmospheres, this may be a good opportunity for you. Traveling phlebotomists may work with RN’s in nursing homes, or work with the Red Cross for different blood drives.
You may also work with RN’s to go to the senior’s own home, as many nurses do not have phlebotomy training. As you work more with older people, employers will be more keen to recruit you at a higher wage than entry level.
This is also a good way to gain more experience. If you also volunteer, it will give you a better chance at being hired by hospitals, which will increase your salary.
Donor Phlebotomy Specialist
As a donor specialist, you will be determining if the donor is able to participate. If they are, you will be able to collect blood to be taken to the lab for further testing, for use for transfusions when needed.
The only education that is needed is a diploma and a phlebotomy training course.
You will get training while on the job, as well as more experience which will help you to advance faster.
Careers in Advanced Healthcare Fields
Being a supervisor requires more intense training, but will be well worth it. You will need a few years of experience, and also a Bachelor’s degree. You will be responsible for supervising all technicians, as well as monitoring all safety regulations.
This position also includes ensuring proper labeling of collection samples, processing, and proper scheduling. You will also work with other healthcare workers or blood donor organizations to make sure that all work is done in a timely manner.
The salary for this position also drastically increases, depending on who you are working for, especially if you are hired by a hospital.
This career requires additional schooling, at least an Associate’s degree. People in this field not only collect blood samples, but also analyze it and dive the results to the doctor.
You will work with computers to find abnormalities in the blood, and to check for different blood-borne diseases.
If you are trained in, and have a few years of experience in phlebotomy, you can become a registered nurse. This will give you an advantage over nurses who do not have this extra training.
It will help you to get hired more easily, as RN’s usually need a phlebotomist to help with the blood work. When you have the knowledge, skills, and experience with both, you will find that you will be able to be hired in many more of the higher-paying jobs.
You can become easily employed in hospitals, nursing homes, working with the elderly as well as infants.
Of course, the more experience that you have, the more likely you are to become hired in advanced careers.
As a phlebotomist, you will work with many people. Both patients as well as other technicians and doctors. You can choose to work with blood banks, being able to sort blood making it safe for transfusions for saving lives.
You will be able to work with doctors and hospitals in different areas, and with additional schooling, you will be able to work with more than just blood. Phlebotomists will be able to analyze other bodily fluids and tissues. You’ll find out if there are any abnormalities that will help doctors to properly treat their patients.
There are different courses that you can take for extra certifications and degrees, some of which you can take online. These courses are good for those people who have to stay at a full-time job.
As you can see, there are different ways to progress in your career. You will have the ability to choose which direction you want to go in, and you will be able to move up in those careers as well.