How to Become a Phlebotomy Technician in Pennsylvania
Looking to start a promising career in the healthcare industry? Consider becoming a certified phlebotomy technician.
Thanks to their specialized skillset, professionals in this role can work in various medical settings, including hospitals, long-term care facilities, blood banks, outpatient clinics, and research labs.
Education and Training
You Can Start After High School
To become a phlebotomy technician in Pennsylvania, you’ll need a high school diploma or GED and a degree or certificate from a community college or vocational school program.
How Long Does it Take?
Most Pennsylvania trade schools allow you to earn your phlebotomy credentials in as little as 15 weeks. Courses usually include about 100 hours of classroom instruction and another 100 hours of clinical practice.
What Do You Study?
During a phlebotomy technician training program, you’ll study topics like:
- Medical terminology
- Venipuncture procedures
- Finger and heel sticks
- Using vacutainer tubes, butterfly needles, and syringes
- Infection control
- HIPPA regulations and patient rights
- Universal healthcare precautions and safety
Phlebotomy techs need basic medical assistant training so they can take patients’ vitals before drawing blood. They also need to understand how to use certain computer programs and software for updating medical records and charts.
Most medical facilities require phlebotomists to be certified in CPR and first aid, as well.
Some phlebotomy technicians choose to complete a separate training program to get IV certified. Usually, a registered nurse or an LPN will start an IV to administer medications, prevent dehydration in patients, and complete blood transfusions.
Phlebotomy technicians who obtain an IV certification may have an advantage over other applicants when seeking phlebotomy jobs in PA.
Phlebotomy Certification in PA
Once you earn enough clinical hours and perform the required venipunctures to complete an accredited training program, you can begin applying for phlebotomy technician jobs in PA.
Candidates must be at least 18 years old and will need to undergo a background check and drug screening before they can start working in most medical settings.
Certification Has Its Advantages
While unlicensed phlebotomy techs can find work in Pennsylvania, most employers prefer to hire candidates with an official certification.
Many phlebotomy technicians obtain their licenses through the American Society of Clinical Pathologists (ASCP) Board of Certification, which offers credentials to a wide range of medical laboratory professionals.
However, you could also get certified through:
- The National Phlebotomy Association (NPA)
- National Phlebotomy Certification Examination (NPCE)
- National Phlebotomy Certification Testing (NPCT)
Phlebotomy Technician Salaries in PA
Salaries for phlebotomy techs in Pennsylvania vary, depending on your employer. For example, privately-funded medical research facilities tend to pay more than the average hospital.
However, a certified phlebotomy technician may be able to negotiate a higher salary than a non-certified tech.
How Much Can You Make to Start?
Your location might also affect your phlebotomy technician salary in PA. The federal Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that most phlebotomists in the state earn roughly $37,930 per year.
However, wages differ depending on where you live. Check out this list to find the average phlebotomy tech salaries in different Pennsylvania cities:
Experts predict a roughly 10 percent increase in the demand for phlebotomy jobs in the United States over the next decade, mainly because of experienced workers retiring or changing career paths. As a result, phlebotomy techs in PA should be able to find ample employment opportunities between 2021 and 2031.
Those who struggle to find phlebotomy technician jobs in Pennsylvania might consider becoming certified nursing assistants (CNAs) or medical lab techs. Although these careers may involve getting additional training and certifications, they require many of the same skills you would use in the phlebotomy profession.