Healthcare Phlebotomist
Salary Range Jobs Available
$30,700 - $50,400 20,300+

What Does a Phlebotomist Do?

If the sight of blood doesn’t make you squeamish, then a career as a phlebotomist could be for you. Phlebotomy technicians draw and prepare blood for medical tests, transfusions or donations. (Don’t let the funny name confuse you; it comes from the Greek work for vein.)

Phlebotomists collect blood through a patient’s vein (venipuncture) or through a finger prick (capillary sample). They are important members of the healthcare team. If you’ve ever had a calm, experienced phlebotomist take your blood — or the opposite — then you know what we mean. This technician is often the first or only person a patient will interact with. If a patient is anxious, the phlebotomist first has to make the person more comfortable.

If you enjoyed science classes in high school and are interested in working in a healthcare setting, this career is a good way to know if that’s a good fit for you. Plus, you can become a phlebotomist in less than a year! Keep on reading if you want to know more. 

Phlebotomist inserts a needle to take a blood sample
Not familiar with the job name? A phlebotomist is the person who draws your blood when you go to the doctor’s office. (Credit: Andrey_Popov/Shutterstock)


  • Explain blood draw or transfusion process to patients
  • Draw blood for testing or processing
  • Accurately label the drawn blood
  • Assist patients who experience adverse reactions
  • Enter patient information into a database
  • Maintain medical instruments such as needles, test tubes and vials
  • Keep work areas sanitary
  • Adhere to all safety protocols

How To Become a Phlebotomist: FAQs

The bottom line:

Physicians need blood drawn as a first step in any diagnosis. That’s why a skilled phlebotomist is so crucial to a medical team’s success. What other career can put you into such a vital position with less than a year of study? 

Becky Palsgrove, phlebotomist

What is it like to be a phlebotomist?

Becky Palsgrove started as a part-time phlebotomist in September 2019, but it didn't take long for her to make it a career. 

"When I’m able to collect blood from someone who’s a 'hard stick,' I feel proud," says Becky of patients who aren't keen on getting their blood drawn. "I really do feel like a valued member of the care team when I do a good job."

Her ability to connect with patients and be respectful of their fears has made her better at her job.

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