Graduate Nursing vs Phlebotomy

Graduate Nursing vs Phlebotomy

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Are you considering a career in healthcare but unsure which path to take? Two popular options to consider are graduate nursing and phlebotomy. Both fields offer rewarding opportunities to work in the healthcare industry, but they have significant differences in terms of job description, education and training, and career outlook. In this blog post, we will explore the key differences between graduate nursing and phlebotomy to help you make an informed decision about your future career path.

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Healthcare is a rapidly growing industry that offers a wide range of career opportunities. Whether you have a passion for patient care or enjoy working in a laboratory setting, there is a healthcare career that can suit your interests and skills. Graduate nursing and phlebotomy are two paths that aspiring healthcare professionals often consider, and understanding the differences between these two fields can help you choose the best fit for you.

What is Graduate Nursing and Phlebotomy?

Graduate Nursing:

Graduate nursing is a field that involves providing advanced nursing care to patients. Graduate nurses, also known as advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs), have completed additional education and training beyond that of a registered nurse (RN). They are qualified to diagnose and treat illnesses, prescribe medications, and provide primary and specialty care to patients of all ages.


Phlebotomy is a specialized field within the healthcare industry that focuses on drawing blood from patients for various purposes, such as diagnostic testing and blood donation. Phlebotomists are responsible for collecting blood samples, ensuring patient comfort and safety during the procedure, and properly labeling and storing the samples for analysis.

Difference between Graduate Nursing and Phlebotomy

Scope of Practice:

  • Graduate nurses have a broader scope of practice compared to phlebotomists. They are trained to provide comprehensive healthcare services, including diagnosing and treating illnesses, managing chronic conditions, and promoting health and wellness.
  • Phlebotomists, on the other hand, have a more limited scope of practice that revolves around blood collection. They are not trained to diagnose or treat illnesses but play a crucial role in the healthcare team by providing accurate and reliable blood samples for analysis.

Level of Education and Training:

  • Graduate nursing requires a higher level of education and training compared to phlebotomy. To become a graduate nurse, individuals must complete a bachelor's degree in nursing (BSN) and obtain a registered nurse (RN) license. They must then pursue additional education and training at the graduate level, which typically includes a master's or doctoral degree in nursing.
  • Phlebotomy, on the other hand, typically requires a shorter period of education and training. Many phlebotomists complete a phlebotomy certification program, which can range from a few weeks to several months. Some states may also require phlebotomists to obtain a state license or certification.

Job Settings:

  • Graduate nurses work in a variety of healthcare settings, including hospitals, clinics, private practices, and long-term care facilities. They may also work in specialized areas such as pediatrics, geriatrics, or psychiatric nursing.
  • Phlebotomists primarily work in clinical settings, such as hospitals, laboratories, and blood donation centers. They may also work in outpatient clinics or physician offices that require blood collection services.

Graduate Nursing vs Phlebotomy: Job Description

Graduate Nursing:

  • Assessing patients' health status and performing physical examinations
  • Diagnosing and treating acute and chronic illnesses
  • Ordering and interpreting diagnostic tests
  • Prescribing medications and other treatments
  • Educating patients and their families about managing their health conditions
  • Collaborating with other healthcare professionals to provide comprehensive care


  • Collecting blood samples from patients using various techniques
  • Identifying patients and labeling blood samples correctly
  • Ensuring patient comfort and safety during the blood collection process
  • Properly storing and transporting blood samples for analysis
  • Maintaining accurate records of blood collection procedures
  • Providing exceptional customer service to patients

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Graduate Nursing vs Phlebotomy: Education and Training

Graduate Nursing:

  • Bachelor's degree in nursing (BSN)
  • Registered nurse (RN) license
  • Master's or doctoral degree in nursing (depending on specialization)
  • Clinical hours and supervised practice in a healthcare setting


  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Phlebotomy certification program (duration varies)
  • Hands-on training in blood collection techniques
  • Anatomy and physiology coursework
  • Infection control and safety training

Graduate Nursing vs Phlebotomy: Career Outlook and Salary

Graduate Nursing:

  • The demand for graduate nurses is expected to grow significantly in the coming years due to an aging population, increased chronic illnesses, and healthcare reform. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of nurse practitioners, a type of graduate nurse, is projected to grow 52% from 2020 to 2030.
  • The median annual wage for nurse practitioners was $117,670 in May 2020, significantly higher than the median wage for all occupations. The actual salary can vary based on factors such as experience, specialization, and geographic location.


  • The demand for phlebotomists is also expected to grow, although at a slower rate compared to graduate nursing. The increasing need for medical testing and the aging population contribute to the demand for phlebotomy services.
  • According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of phlebotomists is projected to grow 17% from 2020 to 2030, which is faster than the average for all occupations.
  • The median annual wage for phlebotomists was $36,320 in May 2020. However, it is important to note that salaries can vary based on factors such as experience, location, and the type of healthcare setting.

Final Thoughts

Choosing a career in healthcare is an exciting and important decision. Both graduate nursing and phlebotomy offer unique opportunities to make a difference in the lives of patients. When considering which path to take, it is important to consider your interests, skills, and long-term career goals. Graduate nursing offers a broader scope of practice and requires a higher level of education and training, while phlebotomy focuses on blood collection and typically requires a shorter period of education. Additionally, the career outlook and salary potential may also influence your decision. By carefully considering these factors, you can choose the path that aligns with your passion and goals in the healthcare industry.

Dreambound provides programs in various locations. Explore these blogs for in-depth information on the two vocations, including their specific requirements and instructions on how to become a part of them:

Blessed Joy Amarga
Written by
Blessed Joy Amarga

Blessed Joy Amarga is part of the Growth and Sales teams at Dreambound. She helps bring in new leads, increasing the number of people at the top of the sales funnel, and supporting the team in creating graphics to boost social media engagement. Blessed is also a Licensed Architect. Outside work, she enjoys traveling and exploring new places for her vlog.

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