Here are some Frequently Asked Questions about phlebotomy in the UK:

What's the difference between Venepuncture, Phlebotomy and a Phlebotomist?

Venepuncture and Phlebotomy are the practice of obtaining blood from a vein, and will often be an additional skill for Healthcare professionals.
A Phlebotomist has the skill that encompasses all aspects of Venepuncture and could include ward, OPD, Glucose Tolerance tests, near patient testing, Paediatrics, cannulation and other specialist skills.

I would like a job in Phlebotomy

The National Association of Phlebotomist is the professional body for practicing Phlebotomists and is NOT involved in recruitment of Phlebotomists.

How do I become a Phlebotomist?

The best way to become a Phlebotomist is to apply for a trainee position within a Healthcare setting.

I'm an overseas Doctor and want to do Phlebotomy.

Most Phlebotomy posts are part time and if you have previous Venepuncture experience it will still be necessary for you to review your skills to ensure you follow UK best practice. It should be noted that Phlebotomist are not qualified to discuss clinical details with patients, and while working in Phlebotomy its essential you work within the boundaries of the role. Excellent verbal communication is critical.

I'm a trained nurse, how do I gain Venepuncture skills?

If you are working within Healthcare and have access to patients and a suitable planned mentor, attending a theory Venepuncture course would be beneficial. If working within a Trust, approach your Phlebotomy Department who would be your first option for supervised practice.

I work within Pathology and would like to train in venepuncture?

Initially speak to your line manager possibly during your appraisal and they should know the best route for you to take.

I'm looking for work should I pay for a course?

Attendance on courses demonstrates interest in the role, but is costly.
Trainee posts will want you to demonstrate excellent communication skills, patient empathy and an understanding of Infection control.

If I want to do a course – which should I choose?

Venepuncture training that fails to provide supervised practice on live patients has limited value and would not be recognized when applying for posts within the NHS.
Good venepuncture training should cover.
• Personal Standards and Code of practice
• Health and Safety – Inc Infection Control
• Pre Analytical variables
• Equipment – using all types of closed venepuncture systems
• Technique – using best practice guidelines
• Complications
• Practical supervision – with final assessment after 3 months or 50 bloods for OPD
• Practical supervision – assessment within the 50 bloods if working in ward areas.

What is the minimum age for a Phlebotomy Post?

17 years old

I want to do Paediatrics

For Paediatric Phlebotomy you should be able to show evidence of at least one years continuous practice, attend a Paediatric Venepuncture course and work along side a experienced Paediatric Phlebotomist to gain a portfolio of evidence through experiential witness statements.

I'm a Phlebotomist but want to know more.

Attendance to the NAP conferences is an excellent platform for sharing and gaining knowledge. If you have a group of colleagues and a specific interest then contact Jacqui Hough our Educational Coordinator for some tailor made training.

Does your NAP membership include Professional Indemnity Insurance?

No; research medical insurance companies to determine the best for your needs.

How do we book on a course?

Download booking form from website and send to Jacqui Hough @