For those seeking an in-demand entry-level career in the healthcare industry, this microcredential provides an excellent introduction to the roles of the phlebotomist and the electrocardiography (ECG) technician in a simulated clinical environment. In addition to using simulation arms to practice basic venipuncture skills and learn the phlebotomy specimen collection process and phlebotomy theory and techniques, students will learn the fundamentals of laboratory safety, proper disposal of biohazardous waste materials and medical sharps, and discuss established regulations and standards, quality assurance and liability risk management as they apply to the practice of phlebotomy and electrocardiography. Students will also learn proper performance of electrocardiography (ECG) testing by placing electrodes on a life-like mannequin and using a cardiac rhythm simulator connected to an electrocardiograph to mimic various dysrhythmias and normal ECG tracings. Students will also build a professional vocabulary of medical terminology, learning word components, combining forms, medical abbreviations, anatomic structures and directional terms, major body system identification, and common pathologies to prepare them for this content area of both certification exam outlines.
Additionally, students will gain direct patient-care experience by participating in at least 45 contact hours in an assigned SUNY Erie affiliated healthcare setting, demonstrating the cognitive objectives, psychomotor competencies and affective behaviors of phlebotomy standards while obtaining practical application experience in the collection of clinical samples from actual patients under the supervision of a host-site preceptor using techniques and skills learned in the on-campus course. Students also complete training in HIPAA and OSHA compliance, Laboratory Safety, Blood Borne Pathogens and Infection Control as part of their coursework prior to off-campus participation.
Nationally recognized certification exams will be administered upon successful completion of these courses where students will demonstrate competency in skills attainment. The goal of this micro-credential is to produce entry-level certified phlebotomists and ECG technicians who possess the necessary knowledge to work effectively with patients alongside other valued members of the allied healthcare team. These courses will not only prepare certificants to begin careers as certified phlebotomy technicians and registered ECG technicians but may serve as a gateway into another healthcare career and/or add valuable experience and certification to enhance another degree.
Phlebotomy and electrocardiography are part of the clinical skill set of medical assistants, and according to NYS Department of Labor, medical assisting is one of the in-demand occupations with the most anticipated hiring in Western New York (Current Employment Statistics | Department of Labor (ny.gov)). This aligns with Regional Economic Development Council (REDC) initiatives and is a key component of New York State’s approach to state investment and economic development. Additionally, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook, the employment of phlebotomists is projected to increase by 22% from 2020 to 2030, much faster than the average for all occupations. Approximately, an average of 19,500 openings for phlebotomists are projected annually over the next decade to replace those who upskill into other occupations, exit the labor force or retire https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/phlebotomists.htm). Likewise, the employment of ECG technicians is expected to increase by 14% from 2020 to 2030 and an estimated 12,000 openings for technicians are anticipated each year.
Upon completion of the micro-credentialed Phlebotomy and ECG Technician program, students will be able to:
- identify the function of phlebotomy and electrocardiography (ECG) in the healthcare setting;
- demonstrate competency in Bloodborne Pathogens, OSHA Regulations, Infection Control, Laboratory Safety and HIPAA Compliance;
- select appropriate veins and demonstrate proper collection techniques by venipuncture on adults;
- recognize the need for specialized collection techniques, the complications and special considerations associated with blood collection and micro-collection;
- demonstrate venipuncture and capillary puncture techniques;
- demonstrate proper procedure for recording and printing a standard 12-lead electrocardiogram (ECG);
- identify the role of the ECG Technician in assisting with ECG assessment and interpretation;
- identify quality assurance practices in healthcare;
- apply the skills required to project an image of professionalism to include appearance, conduct, punctuality, competency and continuing education; and
- pass national certification exams for phlebotomy and ECG technicians.