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Phlebotomist Licensure & Certification Guide

Lindsey Gram, RN
February 8, 2024
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Phlebotomists specialize in obtaining lab tests and blood samples. They are well-trained medical professionals who use their skills to ensure blood tests are drawn quickly, correctly, and safely. Plus, their skill is in high demand. Did you know that over 7 billion lab tests are needed each year? 

Is this important and impactful career for you? Let’s talk about the phlebotomist certification and phlebotomist licensure you need to get started. We’ll tell you everything you need to know to become a phlebotomist and obtain your certified phlebotomy technician, or CPT certification. Review our Phlebotomist Career Guide and Salary Guide for more information! 

General Requirements to Become a Phlebotomist

How do you become a phlebotomist? You will need a high school diploma or equivalent to get started in this field. You typically need two credentials- to complete a phlebotomy training program and obtain your CPT certification. Here’s how to get started:

  • Enroll in a phlebotomy training program. There is a wide range of phlebotomy programs available to pick from. Options include full-time, part-time, and partially online programs. Phlebotomy training consists of both classroom and clinical training. 
  • Your phlebotomy program may require you to obtain a basic CPR certification before clinical experiences with patients. 
  • The length of each program varies, with accelerated and full-time phlebotomy training programs taking 12 to 16 weeks to complete. Part-time programs may take 4 to 8 months. 
  • Once you have completed a phlebotomy training program, you can begin to prepare for your certification. 93% of phlebotomy jobs require certification, and we strongly suggest obtaining a cert to increase your career options.

How to Become a Certified Phlebotomist?

Certification is a great way to show your dedication to your patients and profession, maximize your earning potential, and create better career opportunities.

When it comes to pursuing a career in phlebotomy, you have several options for certification.  Not all Phlebotomy Certification exams are created equal, so it’s important to do your research in order to find a certifying body that has a good standing and long history in the field. Let’s take a look at some of your phlebotomy certification options! 

At Trusted, we recommend that you have one of these three certifications.  We, and many other employers, will require that you are certified through a certifying body that allows for verification of your certification.

PBT- Phlebotomy Technician Certification

The PBT certification is offered by the American Society for Clinical Pathology or ASCP. While each verification is valuable, this is the gold standard for phlebotomy certifications.   

  • To be eligible for PBT certification, you must have completed an accredited phlebotomy program and a minimum of 100 venipunctures. You must have your CPR certification prior to taking the exam.
  • After meeting the requirements, you will need to take and pass the PBT exam. This certification exam is a total of 80 questions in length. 
  • Once you achieve PBT certification, you will need to renew this credential every three years to remain certified. 

RPT- Phlebotomy Technician Certification  

RPT certification is available through the American Medical Technologists or AMT, and is another great choice for phlebotomy certification. 

  • To become eligible for RPT phlebotomy certification, you need to have completed an accredited phlebotomy program, at least 50 venipunctures, and 10 finger sticks. 
  • To achieve this certification, you will need to take and pass the 200-question RPT exam. 
  • In order to maintain your RPT certification, you must renew your credential every three years

CPT- Certified Phlebotomy Technician Certification

CPT Certification is provided through the National Healthcare Association or NHA. This phlebotomy certification is also a great choice to advance your phlebotomy career. 

  • To be eligible to apply for CPT certification, you must complete a phlebotomy training program and show evidence that you have successfully performed at least 30 venipunctures and 10 capillary or finger sticks. Most applicants meet this requirement in their phlebotomy program’s clinical hours.
  • Once you meet the requirements, you must take and pass the CPT exam. This exam consists of 100 questions, and you are given two hours to complete the exam. 
  • Once you achieve your CPT credential, you are required to renew your certification every two years to maintain certification. 

What Comes Next After Phlebotomist Certification?

Now that you’ve completed a phlebotomy training program and achieved certification, you can begin looking for employment as a phlebotomist! According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, phlebotomy jobs are projected to grow an impressive 8% from 2022 to 2032. This growth is well above the average for all careers!

Phlebotomy is in high demand, and is an excellent career choice. You will be a skilled healthcare provider who plays a vital role and makes a positive difference in the lives of your patients. Plus, you can take your phlebotomy skills on the road and begin a fun, rewarding, and lucrative career as a travel phlebotomist! 

What States Require Phlebotomist Licensure?

Unlike other specialties that require state licensure, only four states require state phlebotomy licenses. Phlebotomists who work in these states and hold their CPT certifications are both licensed and certified phlebotomists. Licensure is not currently required in any other states. Here’s the additional information you need to know about phlebotomy licensure if you are interested in working in these states.


You can view the California phlebotomy licensure requirements here. California separates phlebotomy licensure into three levels, with different licensure requirements and scope of practice for each. These levels are:

  • Limited Phlebotomy Technician- LPT
  • Certified Phlebotomy Technician I- CPT I
  • Certified Phlebotomy Technician II- CPT II

No matter which level of licensure you have, the initial application has a $100 fee, as does your renewal every two years. 


You can view the Louisiana phlebotomy licensure requirements here. Louisiana does not have separate levels for phlebotomy licensure. The licensing fee is $40.  They do offer temporary licensure for recent graduates who have registered for a certification exam. The temporary license has an additional $40 fee. 


You’ll need to visit Nevada’s Medical Laboratory Personnel Licensing website and create an account to view Nevada’s phlebotomy licensure requirements. Here, phlebotomists are classified as medical laboratory personnel and must hold a medical laboratory personnel license. 


You can view the Washington phlebotomy licensure requirements here. Washington does not have separate levels for phlebotomy licensure.  The license is good for two years and has an associated $145 fee for your initial application and renewals.

The state of Washington does allow applicants who have completed their training program to work for up to 180 days after filing their application while it’s being processed.  This work must be done under the level of supervision required for the training program.

Find a Travel Phlebotomist Job with Trusted Health

As the demand for skilled phlebotomists continues to rise, why not consider the dynamic and rewarding path of a travel phlebotomist? Imagine exploring new places, meeting diverse people, and gaining unique experiences all while advancing your career. It's more than a job – it's an adventure in healthcare! Now that you have the tools you need to navigate certification and licensure across states, are you ready to explore the exciting world of travel phlebotomy? Dive into opportunities with Trusted Health. Browse our available travel phlebotomist jobs today and embark on a journey that promises growth, adventure, and the chance to make a lasting impact. Join us, and let's journey together in healthcare!

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