Every hospital, outpatient clinic, and blood drive require a minimum number of credentialed phlebotomists on staff. As advances in medical research and treatment continue to grow, the healthcare industry needs more phlebotomists.
It is one of the careers with the brightest outlook in the United States. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that employment of phlebotomists is projected to grow 17% from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations.
Demand for phlebotomists will remain high as doctors and other healthcare professionals require bloodwork for analysis and diagnosis.
What Kind of Skills Do You Need to Be a Phlebotomist?
Phlebotomists draw blood from patients for tests, research, transfusions, and/or blood donations. They work primarily in hospitals, doctors’ offices, blood donation centers, and laboratories. Along with drawing blood, they label the blood for processing, enter information in computer databases, and assemble and maintain all the medical instruments needed to draw blood.
Phlebotomists often explain the procedure gently to patients in order to calm their nerves. Sometimes, they also have to care for patients who have an adverse reaction after their blood is drawn.
Types of Phlebotomy Skills
Phlebotomists require a wide variety of skills. Some of these are hard skills, such as knowing how to perform certain medical procedures and dexterity for using equipement efficiently. Others are soft skills, such as compassion for anxious patients.
Attention to Detail
Phlebotomists usually have a constant flow of patients throughout the day. They need to be precise when drawing blood and labeling and keeping track of samples.
- Calculating the Quantity of Blood Needed
- Decontaminating the Puncture Site
- Documenting All Procedures
- Following Infection Control Guidelines
- Locating Appropriate Veins for Blood Collection
- Maintain Specimen Integrity
- Preparing Specimens for Transport to the Laboratory
Phlebotomists need to be able to clearly explain procedures to patients, and listen to their questions and concerns. Many patients will be nervous, so clearly explaining what is going to happen will put patients at ease. Strong verbal communication skills are critical.
- Oral Communication
- Nonverbal Communication
- Active Listening
- Explaining the Process of Extracting Samples
- Instructing Patients Regarding Proper Urine Collection
- Writing Reports, Correspondence, and Policy
Most hospitals and doctors’ offices require phlebotomists to enter patient and specimen information in a medical record database on the computer. Having data entry skills and experience is a big plus for a phlebotomist.
- Data Management
- Computer Skills
- Microsoft Office Suite
- Data Management Software
- Information Management
Physical dexterity (or motor skills) is critical for a phlebotomist. Phlebotomists have to work with their hands to handle equipment and draw blood. They need to be able to draw blood quickly and efficiently, with minimal discomfort for patients.
- Close Vision
- Hand-eye Coordination
- Working Quickly
- Performing Chemical Tests
- Promoting Workplace Safety
Phlebotomists need to have strong interpersonal skills. In particular, they need to be able to empathize with and show concern and care for patients who are nervous. Empathy will help a phlebotomist interact successfully with patients and their families.
- Calming Anxious Patients
- Customer Service
- Emotional Intelligence
- Interpersonal Skills
More Phlebotomy Skills
- Critical Thinking
- Mathematical Skills
- Organizational Skills
- Stress Management
- Applying Tourniquets
- Identifying Abnormal Cells
- Maintaining Lab Equipment
- Minimizing Waste
- Properly Labeling Specimens
- Reading and Interpreting Medical Documents
- Reading Color Chemical Reactions
- Receiving Pre-collected Specimens from Patients
- Recording Data
- Responding to Emergency Situations
- Safely Disposing of Blood and Bodily Fluids
- Taking Vital Signs
- Testing Blood for Drugs
- Tracking Specimens
- Transporting Specimens
- Proper Disposal of Contaminated/Used Needles
- Medical Coding
Review a Phlebotomist Resume Sample
This is a sample resume written for a phlebotomist. You may simply read the sample below or download the Word template by clicking on the link.
Phlebotomist Resume Example (Text Version)
123 Old Oak Lane
Hattiesburg, MS 39402
Delivering kind and attentive service to patients of all ages.
Consummately professional phlebotomist with 6 years’ experience within physicians’ office and hospital settings. Apply keen attention to detail to ensure proper collection and labeling of all blood samples.
Key skills include:
- Venipuncture / Capillary Blood Collection
- Empathetic Customer Service
- Excellent Communication Skills
- Specimen Preparation
- Medical Records Data Entry / Coding
- Insurance / Payment Processing
FAMILY PHYSICIAN ASSOCIATES, Hattiesburg, MS
Phlebotomist (February 2019 – Present)
Provide compassionate and reassuring service to patients during venipuncture and / or capillary blood collection. Explain the procedure to patients, perform blood draws, and correctly label samples collected. Key contributions:
- Diligently ensured the proper sterilization of medical instruments and blood lab, closely following infection control guidelines, maintaining lab equipment, and safely disposing of blood products.
- Mentored new hires in effective phlebotomy techniques, patient relations strategies, procedure documentation, and HIPAA requirements.
FORREST GENERAL HOSPITAL, Hattiesburg, MS
Phlebotomist (May 2016 – February 2019)
Drew and labelled patient blood for processing, logged information into medical records database, and meticulously maintained medical instruments. Key contributions:
- Frequently assigned to work with child patients upon request of supervisor, based on excellent ability to calm and communicate with them.
- Earned multiple “Employee of the Month” awards.
EDUCATION & CREDENTIALS
MISSISSIPPI GULF COAST COMMUNITY COLLEGE, San Jose, Calif.
Phlebotomy Technician Program, May 2016
Certification: ASPT Certified
Information Technology Skills: Microsoft Office Suite • athenahealth EHR
How to Make Your Skills Stand Out
Add Relevant Skills to Your Resume In the description of your work history, you should use the skills that most closely match the job posting.
Highlight Skills in Your Cover Letter In your cover letter, you can mention one or two of these skills, and give a specific example of a time when you demonstrated those skills at work.
Use Skill Words in Your Job Interview Make sure you have at least one example of a time you demonstrated your top skills.