The Ultimate Phlebotomist Salary and Careers Guide
What is a phlebotomist salary?
As a phlebotomy technician, you will have vast range of responsibilities, the most prominent ones are collecting blood samples, analyzing / testing them, labeling them and keeping their inventory.
These wide ranging responsibilities will make you a great candidate for moving up in the field of healthcare. Most future nurses, CNAs and RN start their medical careers as phlebotomists.
Since phlebotomy is a start-up career in the medical field, its basic salary is a bit low as compared to other medical positions. The mean phlebotomy technician salary ranges from $12 to $15 per hour.
- 1 What is a phlebotomist salary?
- 2 Phlebotomy Technician Jobs
The difference in the starter’s phlebotomy pay scale is because of a number of factors such as job saturation and location.
Experience in a relevant field is also one of the foremost factors of consideration for an employer, it will have a considerable effect on your basic pay, as well as other employment prospects. This is so due to the fact that the employer’s will use your experience to gauge your potential for future growth within their establishment.
Basic breakdown of phlebotomist salaries
|Yearly Average (Advance)||26,297|
|Yearly Average (ACSP)||27,040|
|Median Upper Range (ACSP)||30,000|
|Supervisor Average (ACSP)||37,814|
There is no doubt that phlebotomy is a rising profession in the field of medicine. A highly trained phlebotomist, with a qualification recognized by the national phlebotomy association, will be highly effective at extracting blood and analyzing it.
Qualified phlebotomy technicians have a great job outlook – a large number of hospitals and clinics, not to mention laboratories, are partial towards qualified and licensed phlebotomy professionals.
In general, those who are certified and skilled have better salary statistics as well, as the table above indicates.
Factors that affect pay:
One of the most crucial determinants is location. Although salaries may vary even within states, the difference between states is also quite apparent.
A very interesting finding is that simply moving from a town in Idaho to an urban center New York, you have a probability of increasing your pay by two times (from $22K to $41K).
Granted that this is also affect by the number of candidates, their experience and various other things, but location is definitely the chief influence here.
Those who work in rural areas are normally paid lower as compared to the ones who work in an urban settings, but this also means that workload for the former is lower.
California pays its phlebotomists the most – $23.36 hourly on average, then there’s Illinois in second place at $17.10 an hour, with Colorado ($16.36) and Minnesota ($15.52) in its trail. The states which paid the least were Ohio, averaging at $12.10 hourly, Wisconsin ($12.52), North Carolina ($12.78), Texas ($13.80) and New York ($13.82).
Federal government facilities are the highest paying phlebotomist employers right from the start (the starter pay is $29,072), as are private organizations. Note that for the latter, there is a very limited window of employment.
State hospitals have lower starting salaries but this is somewhat compensated by the larger number of open slots available there. Moreover, fresh phlebotomy graduates with little experience, who can’t afford relocation, will find their local state hospitals their best bet for getting employed.
Another option you can go for, because of its higher salary, is being a mobile phlebotomist, provided that you have no problem with driving around a lot – you’ll likely be working for labs and smaller hospitals who don’t have their own phlebotomists.
Typically, mobile phlebotomists have a 10% higher phlebotomy wages than dedicated phlebotomists in the same area.
There are just three states that make it compulsory to acquire certification – Louisiana, Nevada, and California – but, depending on the employer, it might be required by other states as well, therefore, you may want to consider getting a certification even if you don’t intend to work in these states.
The ACSP Certified Phlebotomy Technician (PBT) is the most popular one in the field, but there are also others such as AMT (American Medical Technologies) Certified Phlebotomists. Certified phlebotomy technicians normally get slightly better pays than the uncertified ones.
It may seem unexpected, but given the fact that it is an basic job, having more work years on your phlebotomy resume won’t have a drastic influence on your hourly rate of pay.
The salary for phlebotomists with just one year of experience is only marginally lower than those who have been in the field for 4 to 10 years.
The disparity becomes more pronounced only when compared to those who have worked for at least a decade in the field.
Breakdown of phlebotomy salaries with respect to work experience
|Years of experience||Pay / $ [approximately]|
|Less than 1||28,600|
|1 to 4||28,900|
|5 to 9||31,400|
|10 to 19||31,200|
|20 or more||32,200|
Phlebotomy salary for qualified professionals:
Under the guidance of professional staff members, in the long run, you’ll accrue many years of experience in phlebotomy. You may even turn into a supervisor yourself, given enough years of experience, and help train new employees at the facility. The more responsibilities you’ve got, the higher your pay may be. Phlebotomists with a couple decades of experience or more can get more than $40,000 and this figure may become higher than $45,000 if it is an urban center and a high demand facility.
Phlebotomy salary for those who are starting out:
For those who have just begun their phlebotomy careers i.e. those who have just received their license and certification, an hourly salary between $12 and $15 is the norm. This is largely determined by location as well as the type of service they’ll be working for. Donor hospitals pay less than research laboratories. Similarly, a medical center in New York or Dallas can pay much better than a small city in Nebraska.
You may also be able to negotiate the level of pay (to a certain degree and only if you have a great certification).
Remember that money won’t be the biggest reason why most people seek this job – work experience is. As you get more work hours done, you’ll gain more experience and your salary will go up along with it.
Despite the fact that the basic salary is less than several other jobs, it is still a great way to enter the medical profession at a doctor’s private practice or a major hospital. You can build on this basic job to gain experience and make it to better paying medical jobs such as a licensed practitioner nurse or a registered nurse.
What’s really great is that the job outlook for PBTs is on the climb. It is predicted that a larger number of employment opportunities will present themselves in the years to come so you won’t have to go through the ordeal of being qualified yet unemployed. Once again, you’ll have to factor in the location and the type of work you’ll be doing in this field. It will also be dependent on whether or not you have a certification from a reputed body.
The side benefits that go along with your basic phlebotomy salary:
– Paid vacations.
– Pension benefits.
– Medical insurance.
– Paid sick / tired leave (fixed number of days).
– Professional training may be compensated for or even reimbursed to you.
– Interpersonal protection.
A phlebotomist’s salary isn’t their main motivation for entering this field. Most people see this as a means to an end to achieve even better careers in medicine.
Besides, there is a certain sense of accomplishment associated with helping individuals by testing their blood for dangerous health conditions which may not be discovered otherwise.
This isn’t a profession that anyone can handle – since many people get queasy at the sight of blood, it is a mark that you have strong nerves and great hand eye coordination if you are a successful phlebotomist.
Not only will you be extracting blood from the patient, you might also have to act as their impromptu counselor since many patients get uneasy when they see needles!
Phlebotomy Technician Jobs
Given the state of the economy today, it isn’t difficult to figure out why there is such a large number of individuals who are seeking careers which offer better job outlook.
A good number of professions have seen job cuts and reductions in the past few years, and the rate of unemployment in most states is very high even as the economy is recovering.
For several individuals, this has triggered the need to return to school to acquire specialized career education, and those who are looking for careers which are more secure from the effects of recession, the field of medicine is a top candidate.
Phlebotomy jobs are one of the most common professions in the medical field today, and with so many top programs that offer quality education as well as certification, this profession has become the perfect starting point for many who wish to gain a profession in the medical field.
What career options are available?
When you go through the specialized education required for becoming a phlebotomist, you will discover that you actually have huge variety of career opportunities available.
The hospitals are predicted to retain their position as the biggest phlebotomist employers, but even as a phlebotomist employed in a hospital, you’ll have a diverse range of career choices.
Outside of the hospital setting, you can still find various types of jobs requiring phlebotomy training and some jobs might as well do away with the clinical setting altogether e.g. mobile phlebotomists, disaster response, veterinaries etc.
Jobs for clinical phlebotomists
Inside the clinical setting, there are many tasks that a phlebotomist might be assigned with. Hospitals will require you to collect samples of blood, and label and store them away for analysis.
Other jobs in a clinical setting may involve blood connection from donors under the platform organizations such as Red Cross, and also testing / sampling the blood of patients / donors at physicians’ practices, private clinics, nursing homes and so on.
Certain phlebotomists may also take up jobs in disaster relief or with the army for the provision of specific services that are utilized more in the field than in the clinic.
Depending on state regulations, you may even be able to perform certain other jobs with a phlebotomist’s qualification.
Several phlebotomy techs are given specialized training in performing tasks such as drawing blood from arteries or performing injections and setting up intravenous lines.
A phlebotomist who is able to do these tasks is doubtlessly going to be a vital resource for any clinic or hospital, since he’ll be a ‘jack of all trades’ who’ll reduce the number of nursing professionals the institute has to hire for each shift.
Such a phlebotomist will often find it easier to find a better paying job on average.
Other jobs available for phlebotomists
Obviously, clinical jobs are the preferred choice for those who acquire a certificate or degree in phlebotomy, but they certainly aren’t the only option they’ve got.
There are many who work in the field only for a few years before moving on to a better career in medicine or taking up teaching roles.
These professional instruct other prospective phlebotomists and the training they provide usually includes needle technique, specimen handling, dealing with patients, first aid, elementary security / safety procedures.
As instructors, they can often get excellent wages compared to field work.
Plenty of employment opportunities: When all is said and done, a licensed, certified phlebotomist won’t have any trouble at all landing a steady paying job. Nearly all hospitals and clinics are in need of trained professionals who know how to perform specialized tasks with efficiency and dedication.
Even if you can’t find a job at your local hospital, there are options such as disaster relief and humanitarian services open to you. Red Cross is also noted as a popular employer for phlebotomists, and of course, after stacking up some years of experience, you can apply for a post as a phlebotomy teacher at a community college or private school.
Of particular note is the fact that there is such a wide variety of positions that you can choose from, which is why a phlebotomy certification will be one of the most sensible investments you can make in an economy reeling from near collapse.
Here is one of the most popular phlebotomist jobs in NYC offered by a top rated medical institute, there are plenty more, if you’ve got the work experience.
Phlebotomy position in West 14th St NYC at LabCorp
Interacting with patients and playing a part in their general health care. High tech medical technology. Collecting blood for analysis, as well as shipping / preparing samples will be prominent tasks here. This institute requires 2 years work experience besides the standard high school diploma and phlebotomy certification.
There are also great phlebotomy jobs in Houston TX, as this example shows:
Phlebotomist at Clinical Pathology Laboratories
You’ll have the responsibility of accurately acquiring blood samples through capillary collection and venipuncture with as little discomfort to the patient as possible (the age range may be from infants to geriatrics).
Maintain the integrity of the specimen by following the lab’s protocols and adhere to the departmental procedures and policies.
This job requires past experience in collecting / processing specimens at the least whereas two years of work in a lab with blood specimens is preferred.
Here is an example of the type of phlebotomy jobs in San Diego you should expect:
Certified Phlebotomy Tech at Family Health Centers of San Diego
You’ll be using your phlebotomy training to conduct routine tests in clinical labs to be used in treating / diagnosing medical conditions.
You may also have to perform other related duties. Adherence to lab protocols is strictly enjoined and the requirements include a California PBT certificate as well as 0 to 3 years work experience.
Phlebotomy jobs in Charlotte NC will be something like this:
PST Specialist in South Charlotte at LabCorp
Interacting with patients and playing a part in their general health care. High tech medical technology.
Collecting blood for analysis, as well as shipping / preparing samples will be prominent tasks here.
This institute requires 2 years work experience besides the standard high school diploma and phlebotomy certification.
There are also phlebotomy jobs in Los Angeles if that’s where you wish to start from:
Certified Phlebotomy Technician at Torrance Memorial Medical Center
You’ll be collecting samples of blood from in / out patients under the direct supervision of an expert. You may also have to do tasks in the inpatient area.
Hematology, Chemistry and Microbiology education must be strong and a number of computer, general office as well as receptionist tasks may be assigned to you. Verbal as well as hard copy reports may also be required.
A phlebotomy certificate is required whereas a year’s worth of work experience is preferred.
Phlebotomy jobs in Atlanta GA will be something like this example:
Phlebotomist at Emory University
Collection, labeling and processing of patient samples while adhering to stringent protocols for the collection of samples of blood, that include patient ID as well as universal control procedures for infections.
Makes sure that the specimens are labelled accurately as per protocol. Glassware must be handled using washing and drying machines.
You should also be able to maintain and inspect levels of supply to guarantee prompt availability. Minimally speaking, you’ll need a high school diploma as well as the completion of a phlebotomy training course OR a year of phlebotomy experience.
Tips for the job interview:
No matter which state you apply in, and no matter which particular phlebotomy task you opt for, here are some tips that you should follow when going for an interview with the employer:
- Be sure to put in all your past work experience as a phlebotomist on your resume, and also any experience you’ve had working in a relevant health field, especially a job where you’ve directly interacted with patients. Also make a distinction between experience related to human phlebotomy and veterinary phlebotomy.
- Be descriptive about your training while being interview. Talk about your interest in courses like chemistry, biology and health related tasks, and also why you got interested in them in the first place. Discuss your hands on training besides your formal phlebotomy training. Talk about you’re the classes you had fun in and the reason for that.
- Bring copies of documentation / certification to show that your phlebotomy training is complete. It will show your interest and motivation in the job, and may also speed up the hiring process.
- Explain the medical skills you’ve got. You may have to give a demo of these – be calm and steady through the demo, and use it as an opportunity to show your skills as a phlebotomist.
- Be sure to state your keen interest in professional medical journals, magazines and researches related to phlebotomy, and show the interviewer that you can speak with intelligence on recent developments in phlebotomy. This will show them that you are a wholesome professional, ready to take future responsibilities. Also talk about any professional organizations you are associated with, and share your experience as their member where you promoted medicine and in particular, phlebotomy.
- Talk about the best practices in the field e.g. preventive and safety measures that guarantee the safety of both patient and professional. Express your awareness of transmission of disease as well as research being done on it. Be ready to address questions about relevant diseases and proper use of safety protocols.
7. Be prepped to show that you understand the difference between phlebotomy responsibilities for various settings such as hospitals, clinics, private practices and drug testing centers. You should be able to show, for instance, that as a hospital phlebotomist you are able to document medical records as well as understand and adhere to hospital rules regarding the safety of patients and the generally observed standard of care of various medical professionals.