My Starting Point – Chelsea Ruiz – First Blood Draw
Hello Carrington flock, it’s student blogger Chelsea back again for another update! If you’ve not been following my earlier posts, I’m studying the Medical Assisting (MA) program at the Tucson campus. I started the program in March and I’m blogging about my experiences at school.
Last month I mentioned that we were all excited to move onto learning about the cardiovascular system, and performing our first blood draw! Drawing blood from patients is an important skill to master if you want to enjoy a career as a medical assistant. So I thought I’d share the experience of my first blood draw with you.
We were all shaking on that first blood draw day! We were all very very nervous. Somebody next to me even started crying, saying “There’s no way I can do this – you can’t make me!” Ms. Judy, our teacher, was very sympathetic, but she very calmly said – “No I can’t make you, but you have to…if you want to be a well-rounded medical assistant.”
I have to say, after doing my first or second draw, I went from being nervous to loving it! I love love love doing blood draws! Admittedly there were some people who found that it wasn’t for them, but I loved it. It’s exciting; some people have veins that are hard to find, but I managed to find them anyway.
I don’t know how to explain it, but I know for sure that I want to be doing phlebotomy somewhere when I start work. Before we did it in class, I wasn’t really sure about that. There were a few of us who could always get the vein that was really hard to find. I love the fact that I’m good at it! A couple of my classmates really didn’t enjoy it, but it’s good to know there are MA jobs out there that are just front office.
Pricked & Poked!
So that first day of draws we set up stations, kind of how we do when we do vitals. Ms. Judy has to watch everyone the first time they draw blood, so we went in rotation with the whole class watching. I think I was the last one to draw blood from someone; I kept hiding in the back because I really didn’t want to do it. But as soon as I did it that first time, I immediately loved it!
I let pretty much everyone draw from me; I was drawn from a lot because I have really good veins. I was like a pin cushion; it felt like I got poked like a 1000 times! I wanted to be able to help people get all the draws they needed. We would say to a classmate “Can I draw you?” and they were like “Sure, if I can draw you afterwards!” It’s just a little amount of blood each time, so it’s not like when you give blood – you don’t need to go lie down or anything!
It was really interesting to learn about that cardiovascular system, but I don’t think it’s something I’d want to do full-time. While I’d like to do phlebotomy, I don’t think I’d like to specialize in cardiology or the cardiovascular system. But because heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women in the U.S., I know I’ll come across it a lot in my career, no matter what direction my career takes, so it’s an important subject to learn.
By the way, they just came down to campus to film the Tucson edition of ‘Carrington Cribs’ yesterday; they wanted to film me drawing blood! That was exciting, I was steady even though I was on camera! I don’t know if I will make the final edit, we’ll have to see!
Stay tuned for my next installment in a few weeks!