National Phelbotomy Association
National Phlebotomy Association

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A review of minutes and documents reveals that in January 1978,

Diane C. Crawford and twelve phlebotomists from hospitals in the Maryland, Virginia and Washington, DC area who shared her dream and foresight founded the National Phlebotomy Association.

The goals and objectives were:

•To set the National Phlebotomy Standards

•To develop educational curriculum for phlebotomist

•To provide an accreditation mechanism for Phlebotomy training programs

•To provide continuing education for phlebotomist

•To research issues involving Phlebotomy


In 1978 the first by-laws were completed and adopted, several revisions have followed.

The Articles of Incorporation were officially obtained in the District of Columbia code of laws on May 26, 1978 bearing the signatures of Brenda Worthy,

Belinda Pauls and Diane C. Crawford. This certificate of Incorporation was filed with the office of the Recorder of Deeds, May 28, 1978.

Early in its development, NPA recognized the need for continuing education for employed phlebotomists as well as those entering the field of Phlebotomy.

This education focus was established early. The first National Education Conference was held September 28, 1979 at Children’s Hospital National Medical Center in Washington D.C. The Seventh Annual Education Conference was held August 11-14, 1985 in Nassau, Bahamas.

During a three- day period, phlebotomists, nurses, pathologists, laboratory managers and Allied health personnel attended workshops, seminars, exhibits, and continuing education programs especially designed to meet their needs.

Previous program evaluations and were presented. The conference has been held in Florida, California, New York, Atlanta and Chicago and sites have been selected through 1993.

In 1981, a National Curriculum design for Phlebotomy Education was developed by Alice J, Hilfiker, PH. D and was copy written by the Register of Copyrights, Library of Congress, Washington, DC

In August of 1981, the National Phlebotomy Certification Examination was launched at the University of California in San Francisco. Since then the examination has been offered eighty-five times. As of July 24, 1985, 3,085 phlebotomists were certified in forty-four states and Barbados.

From 1981-1985 twenty-seven Phlebotomy Programs in universities, community colleges, hospitals, and private schools have been accredited. Since its inception NPA has demonstrated much growth, however, there are 7,700 hospitals in the United States. Here alone, the potential for program approval is great. This does not include the needs of the community colleges.

The national newsletter, “The Tourniquet” was published twice yearly. Twelve issues have been mailed to members and associates.

Editors were:  Nancy Reasey - 1978-1981

                     Ida Robinson - 1981-1985

The initial insignia was developed by Jean Simendinger. It was modified by Diane C. Crawford, Founder.

At the 1983 meeting in Atlanta, Georgia the participants adopted A Code of Ethics and Phlebotomy pledge submitted August 29, 1982, by Evelina Singleton and Barbara Brown.

The Phlebotomy Prayer, which is optional, was written in 1978 by Pearl Spann.

The National Phlebotomy Association has assumed a key role in the interface between phlebotomists, the laboratory, the physician and the patient or client.  From the period of benign neglect, when few individuals were interested or aware of phlebotomists, when laboratory organizations tabled discussions of an organization of phlebotomists, until today, much growth and understanding has taken place.

Nationally, training programs are utilizing NPA curriculum for Phlebotomy training in increasing numbers. Institutions have redeveloped their Phlebotomy training objectives.

Certification of phlebotomists has resulted in a role change for these practitioners. New textbooks are published yearly. There is educational experimentation in modification of program length and the selected use of independent study materials.

It all started with a dream by Diane C. Crawford, support of committed

colleagues and a positive response from the phlebotomy community.

Prepared By

Ida C. Robinson MSN, RN CPT (NPA)