Blood Bank Technician: Job Description, Duties and Requirements
Blood bank technicians screen and collect blood from patients. Many technicians earn an associate degree or certificate in phlebotomy. Blood bank technicians may work in hospitals or clinics.
Blood Bank Technician: Job Description
Blood bank technicians, also called phlebotomy technicians, work in a lab under the guidance of a medical or clinical laboratory technologist or manager. Technicians collect, label and prepare blood, plasma and other components for transfusions. In addition, blood bank technicians consistently interact with the public, conducting interviews and testing samples to screen potential donors.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), in May 2013, phlebotomists, including blood bank technicians, earned a median annual wage of $30,150 (www.bls.gov). The BLS predicted 27% job growth for phlebotomists from 2012-2022, which is much faster than average.
Blood Bank Technician: Duties
Blood bank technicians properly store blood draws and maintain documentation and records. Technicians work with patients, making them comfortable during the procedure and monitoring vital signs. Technicians also need to be thoroughly versed in OSHA regulations.
Duties for blood bank technicians vary by state. In California, three different phlebotomy certification levels limit the authorized functions a blood bank technician can undertake, responsibilities increase with each level of experience. Most states do not have such a system, and maintain one level of certification for technicians.
Blood Bank Technician: Requirements
Education and Licensure Requirements
According to the BLS, medical technicians have usually earned an associate degree or a certificate from a specialty program at a technical school or hospital. Training in phlebotomy covers medical terminology, anatomy and physiology, blood drawing techniques, ethics, safety standards, first aid, CPR and infection control. After graduation, individuals must pass a national examination for phlebotomist certification. Licensure requirements vary among states, and some require licenses or registration through the state health department for laboratory personnel.
Employment settings in the medical field vary greatly, so blood bank technicians may work consistent hours, or schedules could rotate each week with a certain number of required holiday and weekend shifts. Some technicians might be on call, in case of emergency, in addition to regularly scheduled hours.
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