A group of about two-dozen local high school students wanted to suck your blood last week.
No, we’re not talking about the latest Twilight novel by Stephanie Meyer. We aren’t talking about some teenager vampire show either.
A group of very real Whitley County High School students in Dee Dee Bishop’s medical lab/phlebotomy class were busy learning to draw blood and prick fingers. (For those unfamiliar with the term, phlebotomists are the people, who draw your blood in labs, hospitals and so forth.)
Suffice it to say that several friends and family members got hit up to lend an arm or a finger or two for the effort.
In addition, Superintendent John Siler, Deputy Superintendent Paula Rickett, one reporter, and school board members Brenda Hill and Kenny Carr also donated their fingers, and in the case of Carr, his arm to the effort Thursday morning.
Bishop’s class is part of the phlebotomy technician pathway at the high school.
“They actually can get a certification. If they want to go on to college to get their associate’s degree, they can be a technician or technologist. It is a pathway to that. They could actually get a job drawing blood when they get out of here,” she noted.
The class is also a good first step for students interested in a medical career, such as doctor, nurse or physician’s assistant.
“You have to draw blood with all of those,” Bishop added.
Each student had to do 10 capillary sticks or finger sticks as part of the class, and 30 venipunctures (drawing blood) on live patients.
Several staff members at the school also volunteered.
The work is real world experience for the students, who also go to local doctors’ offices to observe phlebotomists there draw blood.