Medical Lab Technician Assistant

How Medical Lab Tech Training Prepares You to Collect Blood Samples Safely

July 27, 2018

medical lab assistant taking bloodBlood tests provide essential information to healthcare professionals. They can help determine whether a patient has cancer, is pregnant, has a serious illness, and much more besides. As such, the collection and testing of blood samples is an essential part of our healthcare system.

Medical lab technicians are the dedicated professionals who perform this task, among several other duties. There are many essential considerations that must be observed when collecting blood samples, which makes in-depth and hands-on training especially important. Here is a closer look at how top training programs prepare students for this responsibility.

Medical Lab Technician Training Emphasizes the Importance of Proper Sanitation

Classroom theory helps to establish the importance of essential steps taken during blood sample collection. While studying in medical lab tech courses, for example, students learn a wide range of sanitation procedures for before and after the blood specimen has been collected. These procedures are essential, and a vital part of any career as a medical lab technician.

Graduates know to always practice proper hand-hygiene, and wear gloves to prevent contact with a patient’s blood. Students are also aware that they must use needles and syringes of only the disposable type so that a client’s health is never compromised. Students in medical lab tech courses also learn how to properly disinfect the puncture site, usually applying an alcohol swab of at least 70 per cent to prevent infections. Once the blood specimen has been taken medical lab technicians are trained to observe proper waste management procedures, disposing of disposable needles and syringes in their proper bins before washing their hands. Hands-on Experience Helps Students Develop Essential Skills, Such as Positive Patient Identification

While theory is an important part of medical lab tech training, hands-on practice helps to solidify essential concepts and turn them into routine. It’s for this reason that an off-campus externship component is included in a Medix College education. In fact, it’s a requirement.

Essential steps, such as positive patient identification, can be practiced in a real work setting. As a result, students remember to always identify patients using two pieces of information. Medical lab technicians also know to ask open ended questions such as “What is your date of birth?” rather than simply ask patients to confirm information using yes or no answers. This helps to ensure that no specimens get labelled incorrectly throughout training and after graduation.

Medical Lab Technician Programs Stress Proper Patient Care When Collecting Samples

Classroom theory and hands-on practice also help students develop essential soft skills such as patient communication. During the blood specimen collection process, it is important to make sure that patients receive high quality care. There are many patients who, regardless of age, maintain a fear of needles for a number of reasons, which can make drawing blood samples from them challenging. An effective way of staving off that fear is communication, an essential skill that top programs foster in their students.

Medical lab tech training helps students develop the qualities and skills needed to put patients at ease. For more distressed patients, particularly young children, it is important that graduates be both empathetic and understanding. Medical lab technicians can be friendly, make use of positive distractions, and reassure patients that they are in safe hands. These approaches can help soothe patients, and make the process of blood collection a less stressful experience.

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