Top 20 Phlebotomist Interview Questions and Answers in 2021


If you want to gain confidence and maximize the chances of passing your interview, you need to prepare adequately. Interview preparation includes familiarizing yourself with the areas that are frequently tested. Here are our top 20 phlebotomist interview questions and answers.

1. What Inspired You To Become a Phlebotomist?

The interviewer wants to know why you chose to venture into Phlebotomy

Tip #1: Feel free to share a personal reason for pursuing your profession

Tip #2: Be honest and confident

Sample Answer

I value people’s health, and I wanted to provide adequate healthcare to people and work with my colleagues to ensure this. I love to assure the patients in distress and give them hope that everything will be fine. Phlebotomy has given me the chance to practically carry all the blood procedures keenly to save many lives.

2. How Do Stay Motivated?

The interviewer intends to know how you manage to carry on with your career without getting bored.

Tip #1: Highlight the crucial things that inspire you to perform your duties

Tip #2: Mention how important Phlebotomy is to you

Sample Answer

I hate seeing patients suffer, and this motivates me to work hard to ease their suffering. I take care and dedicate all my services to each patient since I believe everyone is entitled to professional quality health care; hence, I feel I should give out my best because patients’ health depends on the quality treatment I will offer them.

3. What Action Do You Take If You Can’t Find a Vein?

The interviewer intends to know how you handle a scenario where the vein isn’t visible

Tip #1: Highlight what you do in the case where the vain is invisible

Tip #2: Be calm and confident

Sample Answer

The moment a vein isn’t visible, I usually apply a hot washcloth to the area I want to infuse for several minutes, which will make the vein visible. If it still isn’t showing, I swing the patient’s arm around several times as the centrifugal force will make blood enter the arm, dilating the vein, hence making them visible. Nonetheless, if both steps fail, I call the nurse in charge to make other arrangements for the patient.

4. What Are Your Strengths?

The interviewer intends to know what you are best at.

Tip #1: Demonstrate the actions you take to ensure success

Tip #2: Only give relevant activities you perform

Sample Answer

I am always keen on small details so as not to misplace specimens or injure a patient.  I can multitask during times when the lab is bustling, and I have to meet tight deadlines. Furthermore, I am a team player and work efficiently with the medical staff to deliver the highest standard of care to patients.

5. What is a Vacutainer Blood Collection Tube?

The interviewer wants to assess if you are familiar with a vacutainer blood collection tube

Tip #1: Define the vacutainer blood collection tube

Tip #2: Demonstrate how it works

Sample Answer

Vacutainer tubes have a double-pointed needle, a plastic holder, and a sequel of vacuum tubes with rubber stoppers of different colors. The color symbolizes the type of additive. Using a Vacutainer is the best way of collecting blood for analysis. It’s easy and safe to use since the blood sample will go directly into the test tube instead of collecting blood first and transferring it to the system.

6. What is Thrombin Time?

The interviewer wants to test your knowledge concerning thrombin time.

Tip #1: Explain the meaning of thrombin time

Tip #2: Show that you are aware of the thrombin time

Sample Answer

Thrombin time evaluates the part of a hemostatic process where the conversion of soluble fibrinogens to fibrin threads takes place. It considers the time required for a fibrin clot to form following a standard amount of thrombin to plasma.

7. Explain What You Should Do In Case Of Incomplete Collection Or No Blood Is Obtained?

The interviewer wants to know the action you will take when there is incomplete or no blood during infusion.

Tip #1: Explain what you will do when there is incomplete or no blood during the collection process

Tip #2: Highlight all the measures you will put in place

Sample Answer

When I fail to obtain blood after puncturing, I change the needle’s position and move it forward or backward if it has penetrated too far. After that, I set the hand at the correct angle; the bevel may be against the vein wall. I loosen the belt; it may be preventing the blood flow. Then, I use another tube and re-anchor the vein since the vein sometimes slips away from the needlepoint. If all these fail, then I will look for another alternative.

8. Explain How You Collect Blood From Babies?

The interviewer wants to know how you obtain blood from babies.

Tip #1: Demonstrate the technique you use to get blood from babies

Tip #2: Be eloquent and straight to the point

Sample Answer

Infants are very delicate; thus, collecting blood should be done in a very creative manner. I collect blood from the heel area or foot. I pre-warm the infant’s foot between 35-40 degrees for about five minutes. The warmth is significant in increasing the blood flow and helps detect the capillaries easily. After that, I puncture across the heel print lines and wipe away the first drop of blood with dry cotton wool and collect the sample from the second drop of blood. I then apply the sterile solution to the puncture area to stop bleeding.

9. What Are the Various Color Tubes Used in Phlebotomy, and What Does it Indicate?

Here, the interviewer is testing your knowledge in tubes used in Phlebotomy

Tip #1: Show your vast experience on the phlebotomy tube

Tip #2: Assure the employer that you are familiar with the system and how to use it

Sample Answer

The blood collection tube has a different color top, which symbolizes the tests. The Golden Top is for serology and immunology testing. However, it uses various chemicals to test. The red top is also for immunology and serology testing. Blacktop for testing Westergren sedimentation rate. Orange top for testing STAT serum chemistries, Browntop for serum lead determination, yellow, blacktop for microbiological testing, light gray top for blood sugar testing, light blue top for coagulation tests, and dark green top for whole blood testing using EDTA.

10. What Are The Possible Risk Associated With Arterial Sampling in Neonatal?

The interviewer wants to know the threat which arterial sampling in Neonatal may pose.

Tip #1: Demonstrate all the risk which may occur during arterial sampling in neonatal

Tip #2: Explain the threats in details

Sample Answer

Arterial sampling is a precarious situation, especially in neonatal. The risk that may arise due to it includes osteomyelitis of the heel, Hematoma, and scarring; the vein may collapse if the tibial artery is damaged while puncturing the heel’s medial aspect and possibilities of nerve damage if the fingers of neonates or infants are stuck.

11. What Are the Essential Information That Should Be Included On the Label of the Sample Tube?

The employer wants to know the essential details that the phlebotomist must indicate on the sample tube.

Tip #1: Mention all the relevant details that the label contains

Tip #2: Prove to the employer that you are excellent at doing all the labeling

Sample Answer

The details indicated on the sample tube include; patient’s personal information like first, middle, and surname, the patient’s ID number; each sample tube should have the date, time, and initial of the phlebotomist labeled on it. All the information should match the ones in the requisition form.

12. What is the Basic Procedure for Collecting Blood?

The interviewer wants to know the excellent method you use to collect blood

Tip #1: Illustrate the procedure you use to collect blood

Tip #2: Demonstrate the measures you put in place to ensure safety while collecting the blood

Sample Answer

I first tie the belt around the upper arm and about 2-3 inches above the venipuncture area. I confirm the belt doesn’t lose the hand’s grip; since this will exert pressure on the vein and make it show clearly. I palpate the vein and locate the best area to collect blood. I then apply disinfectant to sterile the collection site, insert the syringe with the correct angle, draw blood out, and put it in a sample tube. After all this, I loosen the belt from the patient’s arm.

13. How is a Vacutainer Needle Different From Normal Syringe Needle?

The interviewer wants to know the main differences between a regular syringe and a vacutainer needle.

Tip #1: Highlight the differences between the two needles

Tip #2: Give the use of each needle

Sample Answer

A Vacutainer needle is dual-ended, meaning it is sharp on both ends. You draw blood by holding the hand in place; the vacutainer is pressed against the other end of the needle to punch the seal. The negative pressure equalization causes the blood to flow into the container, while the ordinary syringe has one sharp end. You draw blood by pulling the plunger that creates negative pressure between the needle and plunger head.

14. What are the Various Sizes of Vacutainer Tubes Available?

The employer wants to know the various sizes of vacutainer tubes that are present

Tip #1: Demonstrate the multiple dimensions of vacutainer tubes

Tip #2: Show confidence and be straight to the point

Sample Answer

The vacutainer tubes are;  adults, ranging from 5,7,10 and 15 ml, and pediatrics vacutainer tubes, varying from  2,3 and four ml. Each is used in a situation where it applies.

15. What are the Types of Anticolugants Used by Phlebotomy?

The interviewer wants to know the different types of anticoagulants

Tip #1: Mention the different kinds of anticoagulants

Tip #2: Briefly talk about them

Sample Answer

The anticoagulants used in Phlebotomy include; Potassium EDTA, sodium polyanetholesulfonate, and some use heparin.

16. What Tests Do You Conduct To Check Kidney Functions?

The interviewer wants to know the kind of tests carried out while checking if the kidney is functioning.

Tip #1: Demonstrate the tests in details

Tip #2: Prove that you are right and can perform the tests nicely

Sample Answer

The tests I carry out to check the kidney’s state include; Creatine test, where a high level of creatine in urine indicates the kidney won’t be running correctly. The other check is the urea test, and a high level of urea in the urine shows the kidney won’t be operating Estimated Glomerular Filtration Rate (eGFR). Lastly, dissolved salts such as potassium, sodium, chloride, and bicarbonates are electrolyte, and any alteration inside the level of an electrolyte can result from kidney dysfunction.

17. What is the HIV Test Window Period?

The interviewer wants to know about the window period in the HIV test.

Tip #1: Explain the HIV test window period

Tip #2: Concentrate only on the relevant facts about the window period

Sample Answer

HIV test Window duration is the time c program language length between the unique infection with the HIV and the arrival of detectable antibodies to the virus. The window length is between 14-21 days, while in some, it may last for 12 weeks. Therefore, the HIV patient’s blood sample will show no sign of HIV contamination if he/she is in the window stage until he passes the window stage. After this, the virus will be detectable in the blood sample.

18. How Soon are You Able to Detect Whether a Patient is Infected By HIV, When in Window Period?

The interviewer wants to know the time you can detect HIV in a patient who is in the window period

Tip #1: Demonstrate the measures you take to detect the virus

Tip #2: Be eloquent and confident in your explanation

Sample Answer

Several tests are carried out on a patient in the window stage to determine if a patient is infected. They include; First era test where the antibodies’ detection is after 40-60 days of infection, the second progression test where the antibodies recognition is after 21-24 days, and the third technology where the antibodies detection is after 14-15 days of contamination.

19. What is a Whole Blood Sample?

The interviewer wants to know what is meant by the whole blood sample.

Tip #1: Explain the full blood sample in simple details

Tip #2: Highlight the importance of entire blood sampling

Sample Answer

A whole blood sample is blood drawn and mixed on the spot with the anti-colorant to maintain the blood cell’s nature, prevent clotting, and allow complete blood analysis. In other words, the blood that is not allowed to clot after collecting from the patient is the entire blood sample.

20. What Frightens You Most About Being a Phlebotomist?

The interviewer wants to know what you fear in your career

Tip #1: Explain your fears and how you manage to overcome them

Tip #2: Be honest and confident

Sample Answer

I always fear having a patient hurt if a needle breaks off into her skin, and perhaps he is aggressive. Additionally, I also get scared of being stuck by a contaminated needle. However, I am always cautious and attentive while working so as not to incur these problems.

Conclusion

Study and practice these questions and answers to increase your chances of performing better than other candidates. You can tailor the answers to fit your education, experience, abilities, and company. Besides, these questions and answers will give you the confidence you need to make a great impression.

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