How to Become a Phlebotomist in Massachusetts

A phlebotomist collects blood samples from patients for lab tests, blood donations, transfusions and research. This is an important role in just about every healthcare setting. When you work as a phlebotomist, you’ll talk with patients to explain what you’re doing and to help them be less nervous about having blood drawn. After drawing blood, you’ll label it for processing or testing and enter information into a database. You’ll provide help if patients have adverse reactions.

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What’s Required to Become a Phlebotomist in Massachusetts?

Employers in Massachusetts almost always choose candidates who have completed postsecondary education through a phlebotomy program. These programs are offered at vocational schools, community colleges and technical schools, and most can be completed in a year or less.

Training Programs for Phlebotomists in Massachusetts

Most phlebotomist training programs in Massachusetts include both classroom training and lab work. These programs typically cover subjects such as medical terminology, anatomy and physiology, infection control and specimen processing, along with hands-on training in clinical settings. Examples of phlebotomist training programs in Massachusetts include:

  • Roxbury Community College. Located in the Roxbury neighborhood of Boston, MA, this community college offers a comprehensive 210-hour program in phlebotomy consisting of 90 hours of classroom instruction, hands-on training and lab work followed by 120 hours of internship at a medical facility.
  • Springfield Technical Community College. This certificate program consists of 166+ hours, which includes training in venipuncture techniques, capillary puncture, record keeping, adherence to OSHA safety regulations and two- to three-week, full-time clinical placement.
  • Health Training Center. Certification and training programs in phlebotomy are offered at several locations including Attleboro, Worcester, Stoughton, Braintree and Charlestown. This program can be completed in approximately 11 weeks, which includes eight weeks classroom skills training followed by a three-week externship.

Certification or Licensing of Massachusetts Phlebotomists

Massachusetts doesn’t require phlebotomists to obtain a license or certification. That said, obtaining certification from a national organization can help to demonstrate to potential employers that you’re committed to the field and have the needed knowledge and skills.

Certification for phlebotomists is offered by many national organizations including National Phlebotomy Certification, National Center for Competency Testing and American Society for Clinical Pathology. Certification testing may include both written and practical testing.

Job Outlook and Salary Expectations for Massachusetts Phlebotomists

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the median annual salary for phlebotomists in May 2019 was $35,510. Median salary means that half of those who work in this field made a higher wage than this amount and half made a lower wage. In Massachusetts, the annual mean wage (also called average wage) as of May 2019 was $40,660 and the mean hourly wage was $19.55.

Phlebotomy is a growing field, and employment is expected to grow 23 percent between 2018 and 2028 across the United States. This is a much better growth rate than average of all occupations. CareerOneStop projects that job growth for phlebotomists in Massachusetts during the same time period will be approximately 16 percent.

A Career as a Phlebotomist in Massachusetts

When you pursue a career as a phlebotomist in Massachusetts, you’re fulfilling an essential role in the healthcare field. Your skills will be in high demand, leading to employment opportunities in hospitals, doctor’s offices, blood donor centers and diagnostic labs. Some settings may require working evenings, weekends and holidays, and some positions may involve traveling from one site to another.

Your day may include a variety of tasks besides drawing blood such as cleaning medical equipment, preparing instruments for use and disposing of biomedical waste. There are many opportunities for phlebotomists across the state of Massachusetts. The biggest number of opportunities are likely to be concentrated in larger cities such as Boston, Worcester and Springfield.

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