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New & Updated Phlebotomy Documents


Wayne, Pennsylvania, USA—The Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute has published two phlebotomy documents: Collection of Diagnostic Venous Blood Specimens (GP41-Ed7) and Essential Elements of a Phlebotomy Training Program (GP48-Ed1).

Collection of Diagnostic Venous Blood Specimens (GP41-Ed7) provides a process and procedures for diagnostic venous blood specimen collection. Special considerations for collections from vascular access devices, blood culture collection, and collections in isolation environments are addressed, as well as responding to patient emergencies during phlebotomy procedures. An expanded appendix section provides helpful tips for collecting specimens from pediatric and other challenging patients.

“Any facility that isn’t using this as a basis of their procedure manual is putting themselves at risk of operating beneath the standard of care,” said Dennis Ernst, MT(ASCP), NCPT(NCCT), of the Center for Phlebotomy Education and Chairholder of the Document Development Committee on Collection of Diagnostic Specimens by Venipuncture.

“Users of GP41 are more likely to provide patients with a standardized phlebotomy experience, maintain sample quality, prevent patient injury, and release test results that accurately reflect the patient’s health status. Four years in the making, every passage was intensely scrutinized by some of the most highly respected authorities in the industry.”

      Features of this revision include:
  • A comprehensive literature review of over 400 articles and studies
  • 149 new mandatory requirements for the procedure
  • New reader-friendly design with more images, tables, and graphic elements
  • Appendixes that provide guidance on:
    • Maximum blood volumes to be collected on patients susceptible to iatrogenic anemia
    • Drawing from pediatric, elderly, obese, oncology, needle-phobic, and cognitively impaired/combative patients
    • Drawing proximal to an IV infusion
    • Preventing syncope

Essential Elements of a Phlebotomy Training Program (GP48-Ed1) is a resource for developing curricula for phlebotomy training programs and courses. The document is designed for college and proprietary school educators, nurse educators, educational coordinators, laboratory directors and managers, phlebotomy supervisors, and any other health care professionals or educators responsible for the development and/or implementation of a specimen collection training program. It suggests what should be taught, rather than how to teach it.

Dennis Ernst, MT(ASCP), NCPT(NCCT), of the Center for Phlebotomy Education and Chairholder of the Document Development Committee on Phlebotomy Training Program, said, “Until this guideline came along, those who develop and implement phlebotomy training programs in healthcare facilities and academic institutions had no guidance whatsoever as to what they should include. Users of this guideline can be confident that their program is based on the input from the leading authorities in the industry.

“Packed into five chapters is everything educators need to create or redesign their training program, including the collection of blood and nonblood samples, general and technical course content, and clinical and remedial training.

“Every healthcare professional responsible for phlebotomy curriculum trainees should align their curriculum with this guideline.”

For more information about GP41 and GP48, contact Patrick McGinn at pmcginn@clsi.org or +1.484.588.5933.

CLSI sets the standard for quality in medical laboratory testing. A not-for-profit membership organization, CLSI brings together the global laboratory community for the advancement of a common cause: to foster excellence in laboratory medicine.

For nearly 50 years, our members, volunteers, and customers have made CLSI a respected, transformative leader in the development and implementation of medical laboratory testing standards. Through our unified efforts, we will continue to set and uphold the standards that drive quality test results, enhance patient care delivery, and improve health care around the world.

By using CLSI standards, laboratorians can improve process quality, speed the development of standard operating procedures, and implement safer practices with greater ease and efficiency.

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