Becoming a Phlebotomist in Vermont
The phlebotomist is responsible for the collection of specimens for diagnostic testing. Most often, the ordered tests will require performing a blood draw, but it can also mean receiving urine, stool and sputum specimens the patient collected on their own. One of the most important jobs of the phlebotomist is to ensure that specimen integrity is maintained by questioning the collection method and properly labeling it.
Phlebotomists will need to have a great deal of knowledge about the various types of tests performed and how to collect for them. When performing a blood draw, there are myriad factors to consider, such as which tubes to use and how many, whether or not the patient needs to be fasting and what the optimal time period is for the blood draw. Patients will often present as difficult to draw, especially in a hospital setting where many are severely ill. The draw site will also be a consideration, as some patients are restricted to one arm or have an intravenous line.
As an integral part of the healthcare team, the phlebotomist is the public face of the laboratory. Patients presenting for blood work will frequently be stressed and anxious about the process and the test results. Often, as the only laboratory professional to have direct contact with the patient, the phlebotomist will need to be able to interact skillfully and be prepared to deal with a medical emergency.
Licensure for Phlebotomists in Vermont
Vermont does not require phlebotomists to have a license, nor is there a specific oversight board for the profession. Laboratories and doctor’s offices do have regulations to meet, however, and the phlebotomist will be subject to oversight by a physician. A medical technologist or registered nurse will generally provide more direct supervision.
Training Programs for Vermont Phlebotomists
Phlebotomists need to undergo significant training to perform the complicated tasks the job entails. Although it is possible to train on the job, modern phlebotomists generally attend a certification course. Some possible options in Vermont include:
- Community College of Vermont offers training in various locations throughout the state. The classes are offered partially online, through a "hybrid" method, which includes periodic face-to-face meetings.
- Vermont Technical College in Randolph Center offers phlebotomy training. The course combines lectures with observation and hands-on training to prepare students for entry-level positions in the field.
- The University of Vermont Medical Center in Burlington offers training in partnership with Northwest Technical Center in St. Albans. Classes are available in both locations, with clinical rotations performed in one of the network’s clinics or hospitals.
Seeking Additional Certification
Although not required to work as a phlebotomist in Vermont, seeking accreditation is a great way to showcase your skills and professionalism. Credentialing can be obtained through the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP), the leading organization in the profession. Candidates will need to be able to take and pass an examination to obtain certification.
Salary Information for Vermont Phlebotomists
Data collected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) for 2019 showed average annual salaries in Vermont to be $34,450, only slightly below the national average. Ranges in the state fell between $29,060 and $44,750. Entry-level phlebotomists should expect pay rates closer to the lower end of the pay scale.
Working as a Phlebotomist in Vermont
Working as a phlebotomist requires long hours of intense physical exertion. This is especially true for hospital phlebotomists who need to move about the hospital performing blood draws. Phlebotomists also frequently work off-shifts, weekends and early morning hours.
A few possible employers in Vermont include Quest Diagnostics, American Red Cross, University of Vermont Medical Center and Rutland Regional Medical Center.