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Components of the Phlebotomy Procedure (CE)

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Overview / Abstract:

The quality of clinical laboratory results depends directly on the blood specimen collected and received for analysis. This self-study course is designed for all professionals responsible for the preanalytical phase of a blood specimen. This professional may have a variety of titles (e.g., patient care technician, medical assistant, nurse, laboratory assistant, laboratory tech or medical technologist) depending on the place of employment. For the purposes of this self-study course, this individual will be referred to as the phlebotomist. This self study course is equally suited for the phlebotomy student, the individual wanting a general update and review of phlebotomy, and the phlebotomy educator responsible for maintaining training, competency, and documentation of collected blood specimens. The content examines the collection of blood samples by venipuncture and skin puncture, considerations for a quality collection, and possible complications and considerations. Topics discussed are: phlebotomy equipment, the venipuncture and skin puncture process, considerations and complications associated with the process of phlebotomy, processing and transport of the blood specimen to the clinical laboratory, and special procedure considerations.The phlebotomy techniques, specimen requirements, specimen transport, and specimen-handling procedures, are from generally accepted guidelines (CLSI - Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute formerly NCCLS - National Committee for Clinical Laboratory Standards). The reader may note some policies and procedures may vary from the institutional guidelines under which he/she is working or training. This document is not meant to replace any institution-specific policies.
1. Course Text

This course is divided into the following sections:
Venipuncture Supplies and Equipment
Venipuncture Collection
Skin Puncture Collection
Specimen Handling, Transport and Processing
Complications Associated with Blood Collection
Tables and images are included throughout the course to illustrate key points
2. Self-Assessment Exercises

The self-assessment exercises included following each section of the course will enable the participant to assess his/her progress through the course. These exercises consist of question and answer items (e.g., multiple choice and matching). An answer key for the self-assessment exercises is found following each exercise. These exercises are for self-assessment only and will not be reviewed by CACMLE staff.
3. Post-Course Examination

Participants wishing to receive continuing education (CE) credit for this course must complete the post-course exam no later than 3 months from the date it was purchased. The results of this exam will be made known only to the participant who took the examination. A total of 6 contact hours of continuing education credit will be awarded for successful completion of the self-study as demonstrated by achievement of a score of 80% or higher on the post-course exam.

Course Goal and Objectives


This course is designed to promote an understanding of the components necessary to collect quality specimen including the equipment, actual collection, transport, and processing of samples using equipment and techniques in compliance with the existing safety regulations. The course will examine possible complications associated with the phlebotomy process.

Upon completion of this self-study course, participants will be able to:
Describe appropriate types of equipment and collection tubes needed to collect various clinical laboratory blood specimens by venous or capillary sampling. Describe the rationale for each type of collection.
Discuss proper execution of venipuncture and capillary-sampling techniques according to CLSI guidelines.
Describe signs and symptoms of physical problems or patient discomfort that may occur during sample collection and methods to avoid these problems.
Describe considerations for specimen integrity during transport to the clinical testing laboratory
Recognize causes of phlebotomy complications and methods to avoid these complications.


Dec 31, 2017


Clinical Laboratory CE, Nursing CNE, Phlebotomy , Physician CME





Credits / Hours


Presenters / Authors / Faculty

4. Course Author

Ruth M. Jacobsen, MA, MLS,CM & PBT,CM (ASCP) Assistant Professor of Laboratory Medicine – Mayo Clinic College of Medicine Quality Management Coordinator - Department of Laboratory Medicine & Pathology, Adjunct Faculty - CLS Program - Mayo School of Health Sciences - Mayo Clinic College of MedicineRuth worked in all phases of the clinical laboratory as a medical technologist in Minnesota, Indiana, Ohio, and California. These positions were in a wide variety of clinical settings including metropolitan and rural hospitals, independent laboratories, and clinic settings. Her positions included chemistry specialist, microbiologist specialist, QA/QC, generalist, management of an independent laboratory, management experience, phlebotomy educator and program coordinator, and most recent as a quality management coordinator. Her position as phlebotomy educator and program coordinator included teaching phlebotomy techniques to a wide range of student disciplines which includes an in-house phlebotomy training program, as well as five programs from Mayo School of Health Sciences and the Mayo Medical School. Ruth presented educational lectures in phlebotomy and quality management as a guest faculty member for Mayo Medical Laboratories. Ruth designed, wrote, and taught a phlebotomy technician program for Rochester Community and Technical College, Rochester, MN with the first class of students graduating May, 2000. Ruth was a member of the Phlebotomy exam committee for the National Credentialing Agency for Laboratory Personnel (NCA) from 1997 as writer and reviewer of exam questions, a past national Phlebotomy Exam Chair (2000-2003), a chair of the NCA Phlebotomy Job Analysis committee (2004-2005), and served as a second level cognitive reviewer of exam questions for the Phlebotomy NCA exam. With the merger of the NCA and the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) under one organization (ASCP), Ruth served as a member of the certification exam committee for Phlebotomy and Donor Phlebotomy. Ruth retired from clinical practice in 2014.

Activity Specialities / Related Topics

Regulatory / Compliance / Risk Mgt, Hematology, Family Medicine

Keywords / Search Terms

AltusCampus , altus,campus, argus, Venipuncture, Blood Collection, Supplies

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