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Can You Get Certified As a Phlebotomist With a Criminal Record?

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Educational institutions and licensing boards typically perform background checks for health occupations. One such occupation is phlebotomy, whose practitioners draw patients’ blood and perform basic laboratory testing. A criminal record could affect your ability to get certified as a phlebotomist.

Certification with a Record

Although some phlebotomists are trained on the job, a postsecondary training program is typically required. Certification is a separate step and requires passing a written exam. Individual states do not necessarily require national certification but most employers do, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Background checks of phlebotomists and other healthcare workers help protect patients from abuse and confidentiality breaches. If you have a criminal record, you will not be eligible for either training or licensure in states that require a license.

A Criminal Record

Once you have become a phlebotomist, a criminal record might not affect your chances to become certified. The National Center for Competency Testing, the American Society for Clinical Pathology and American Medical Technologists offer certification for phlebotomists, but none routinely performed criminal background checks as of 2021. The NCCT is the only organization that requires you to indicate felony convictions on your application form and reserves the right to perform a criminal background check. A felony conviction will prevent you from becoming certified by the NCCT, if the organization learns of it. If any certifying organization becomes aware of your criminal record, however, you might lose your certification.


Beth Greenwood is an RN and has been a writer since 2010. She specializes in medical and health topics, as well as career articles about health care professions. Greenwood holds an Associate of Science in nursing from Shasta College.

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