"excessive wiping of skin with swab + bad..."
Posted by Anonymous
Are you able to improve phlebotomy techniques/practices, and can they be made consistent across all staff?
Today a phlebotomist wiped my skin at the elbow crease for at least 15 seconds. The swab was then turned over, folded, and the skin wiped for a further 15 seconds or so. This process made the skin very sore. This was totally unnecessary and is something not done at other clinics. Also noticed that the gloves came into contact with the skin so that any bugs picked up from prior handling of papers, objects, etc, could easily be transferred straight onto the skin.
Generally Beacon phlebotomy staff are very good, despite seeming very busy. However, some staff do not seem to concentrate very well on the tasks, chatting or looking away whilst doing this work. (A relative of mine experienced this recently where there was so much painful wiggling of the needle that she bled under the skin at the puncture site).
These may seem like relatively minor problems but when specialist phlebotomy staff are routinely collecting blood from so many, I felt this was important to raise. Additionally most patients are generally quite vulnerable (being at the pointy end of medical treatment), and are usually unwilling to cause fuss. I hope that you can improve or revise practices for consistency since this service affects many people, and many will have suffered like this, but have not complained.