Why is PPD using "Phlebotomists in training" for their studies? I think I can tell (One, by asking them) because they always have another Phlebotomist or Paramedic with them. And they usually shake and sweat a lot while trying to take your blood. Aren't all the values collected supposed to be done in a timely manner? How does using someone who has no idea what their doing help the sponsor or the Volunteers? I can see how it helps the company save money. But it cripples the data collection and sometimes the volunteers.
Is anyone else worried about their veins and longevity as a lab rat because were being used to train new Phlebotomists? Recently, WWCT(San Antonio) seems to have stopped this practice. I don't know if they'll start it up again.
I've also noticed that Ts have a tendency look down on us at check in and say we can't choose who draws our blood. But can we choose where they draw it from and how many new holes they put in us? Is it possible to request that a Phlembotomists use the same hole even though the trainee before them screwed up my vein?
When you enlist in a study you do so as a subject not as a professional. Well at least that is the view of the sponsor. But you have made some important-points. If the training of staff compromises the study that is of grave concern about the quality of data. At no point should the process become so inhumane as if you were a rodent. Constant training of staff on a subject who has to endure multiple stick may be considered brutish and if a clinic is that brutish you probable don't want to trust being transparent about the risk of a study. Since studies often contain elements of individuals of individuals that might have been disadvantaged such as being a part of a minority, people who have-less opportunities (e.g someone who has been incarcerated) we always have to be vigilant about fringe Tuskegee elements. This brings me to my next point. IRBs may be of better service to subjects if by design they had individuals who would have done studies on their boards. Imagine if the NAACP had no blacks on their boards there would be outrage. I think we should contact Paul and discuss a petition drive to put in place such a process. They dug in with programs such as VCT which I think is contemptuous of participants again getting back to fringe elements with lack regard that I hinted at. Its time we have expansive representation and I think Paul is well positioned to be an organizing force for the process.
Post by smiling4areason on Sept 18, 2014 13:04:56 GMT -5
This is a two sided coin. Do I like being a pin cushion for training? NO. Ok, so that's out there.
Does PPD pay us more to put up with it? PPD does have the highest pay, consistently, so in a way, yes.
Do I have concerns about someone damaging my veins? YES! I steer away away from studies with many sticks, especially day after day heavy sticks. If I do a PPD study with 8 sticks in a day, that's getting up there with them. If it's 8x a day, twice in a week, I'm seriously weigh things and contemplating whether I should be doing it. I've done 22 sticks in a day, 2 days in a row at World Wide and was OK (not happy mind you, I was told we'd get butterflies and didn't, I almost walked) World Wide, does however, have very very good (though not the best) phlebotomist. I would never do a 22 stick at PPD, because of the occasional trainee. With that said, they usually don't use the trainees on heavy draw days, until the last round or two. AND the phlebotomist they do have, ARE THE BEST. I call a few of them vein whispers, they are amazing.
I've done 20+ draw days at Celerion, several times in the same big study and NEVER AGAIN, it's not even soing I'd do if desperate, they could seriously end a person's run as a Participant. Their phlebotomist are mostly second rate and they train to boot, so NO WAY, NEVER AGAIN.
As for those in training, and again, I don't like being trained upon, but those in training are nervous, they do care, and want to be genital. Imagine if the roll was reversed...and the subject is making you feel stupid from the jump...do you think that's helping the situation or making them even more nervous? Give them a chance, an once of patience, give them some indication if you know you're spot. And then cowboy up for 30 seconds before you start berating them. PPD is a wonderful facility who treats us as valuable assets, as part of the team and we owe it to the people in scrubs to treat them as coworkers more so than some kind of US vs THEM situation.
At some point it's enough, we're being hurt and they should and will stop and bring in a real phlebotomist, but in the mean time, on the 1/3 of the draws where we are pin cushions, try to be a team player as long as no damage is being done. PPD will give people a shot, they give us a shot at making a living and they give the tech a shot at advancing their career. Be part of that, if possible. I know that when the trainee has uing issues making draws, they stop giving them the needle, PPD doesn't just say "go at it, who cares" PPD does care, more so than nearly any other facility I've ever been too (and again, they also pay better than anyone else).
Point is, we are not there to be abused, but we can be team players to a point, as long as care is being taken and no damage is being done.
Also, to any phlebotomist in training who may read this... Here's what I've noticed... The trainees who are quick to say stuff like "you vein must have rolled" "are you drinking enough water" "I can't see your vein" these are cope outs...if the first thing you do is blame the subject, you are never going to get it. The best phlebotomist can hit the stick, eyes closed, they don't "see" the vein, they do IN FACT feel the vein, they feel the needle slide in. If you can't feel that, then you don't have the touch and you are just butchering us. Our veins seldom roll, the pros never say this, and it's the fact that they don't cope out, that makes them PROS. It's not a game, our vein, that little scar, is a lively hood and as much as we owe you the courtesy of being a "co-work" you owe us as well. If you keep stepping on Thomas' feet, or spitting on Sarah when you talked to her, you'd check your self. It's same when, only worse when you hurt us during blood draws, it's not only in poor form, but it's jeopardizing our income. (It's also jeopardizing yours, because w/o quality subject, you have no product, without us, CRU/CRO have a drug on a shelf without approval, it's worthless, it takes every cog and wheel to make this machine work so respect and care for it as such.
I think it is great that you seem to be un-like a lot of other lab rats and are trying to find out about the rights of volunteers and such. I do hate to burst your bubble. It is not my intent to, however I have already been where you seem to be now, that was several years back. I had gone into a long investigation of IRBs and their supposed purpose of protecting volunteer rights. Consent forms state that if any volunteer wants to know what his / her rights are, to contact the IRB. It is a required formality on the part of research sites , but in reality IRBs are not easy to contact and they are elusive. I had heard of Integreview and I had written to them years back when I was permanently dismissed from because the study doctor decided to be overprecautious and not accept a person who has benign liver hemangioma even though a doctor of mine, and even another study doctor from another research facility told him that it is a normal condition and that probably most people have benign liver hemangioma. I have to admit that I got a reply from the person in charge of Integreview and she explained some things to me via email about how IRB s operate, ( that they have sevearl members who are doctors and some who are not, etc) however I was not told about the grey areas. Lab rats have rights to quit a study, but what if they want to participate and are made to feel that in to do so, they must not complain about anything?
It is a long story to tell, but let s just say that I investigated further with each negative experience I had in a research study. I eventually found out that IRBs are completely a farce as far as their "purpose" of protecting lab rat's rights. IRBs actually protect the financial interests of the CRO or research facility that they are assigned to "oversee." It seems to me that if you try to take some kind of course to become an IRB member (which is soing that I myself tried to do once by telling an IRB that they ought to have a member who is or was a research participant; and not just have members who are doctors, or medical personnel and a number of "non-doctors") what you might just find out is that you will just be taught to only give a one-size-fits-all answer to lab rats which is "If you don't like anything about the study, you have the right NOT to participate." Also you may very well find that any suggestion you may make to better protect lab rats' rights might be voted down by other IRB members. You might not be allowed into the IRB that you try to be a member of if you try to go against established "protocols" that say that the volunteer's rights were not violated if s/he was NOT forced to participate in a study.
I have much more to say on this subject. Again, I have looked into this way before you have. Don't get me wrong. I do applaud your involvement. I think that I would like to keep touch with you to find out what your progress is. I know a few other lab rats who would like to investigate IRBs and make it known that their role is not a very involved one when it comes to protecting a volunteer's rights.
Thank you all for your feed back. I think I'll use your comments to formulate my questions and state my concerns.
Labrat1: I guess I'd press the IRB (or whoever I get a hold of) about not being informed in the consent pertaining to certain procedures and rules regarding the study. Specifically leaving things out about phlembotomy techniques that would increase my risk as a volunteer. Or being informed by random staff and not the recruiter or coordinator during the screening. I suppose I would also contact the sponsor and let them know their data is being skewed by bad procedures and improperly trained staff.
Regarding informing the sponsor , I also have gone that route. I was told by a lab-rat friend of mine that she once heard that in a certain research site one volunteer took opportunity to talk with a sponsor representative who was visiting the site and the volunteer complained to the sponsor that the study is not paying enough for what the lab rats have to endure and/or the food isn't very good ( or soing like that) and the sponsor saw to it that the volunteers got more money and/or improved conditions. This is actually a rare case. But I had written to one sponsor once after I was ousted from a research study and not allowed to volunteer there again because I practiced my right to complain about the poor conditions in the site. The study doctor outrightly made it apparent that she was ousting me because I complained to the management, not because I disobeyed any rule. I eventually wrote to the study sponsor telling them that the research facility who conducted their study had ousted a volunteer (me) because the volunteer only tried to tell the management that other volunteers in the facility were diuptive and oftentimes were disobeying rules and the protocol of the study. You would think that the study doctor would be grateful that someone is letting the management know about such things so that their studies are not corrupted or that their research site has an unprofessional and undesirable atmosphere.
The study sponsor never got back to me about that. I would not know if they nevertheless considered my suggestion and decided NOT to hire the particular research site any more.
But it is a good idea if more lab rats sent letters to the sponsor of studies. Of course those letters should be written in an educated way for best results. A lot of lab rats are under-educated at least in attitude. It is soing that goes against us all.
Next time you do a study please list the study and IRB board. I will seek to investigate the members and any conflict of interest they have. If we change the way these boards operate and force them to be more inclusive for example encourage members with subject experience we can make progress. If you only pursue matters when you think you have been individually wronged then they may dismiss your attempts as being disgruntled. IRB boards should be transparent we should at least know who sit on the boards so we can hold them accountable. May be the boards could be listed on jalr just the same way clinics are listed. On investigation we may find that members have ethical conflict interest. This is an issue we can bring up with JALR founder. I heard he is very progressive.
Post by smiling4areason on May 3, 2015 22:48:10 GMT -5
PPD must have gotten wind of this issue and decided to make some changes because they've done a complete 180 as far as talent. I waited until I'd done several studies to be sure, but PPD is now using talented Phlebotomist every time. I've had zero resticks in the last 100+ draws. The improvement began Nov/Dec 2014 and has been consistent. PDD has been my preferred clinic to do studies, hands down. Phlebotomy was their only weak point and now that they've corrected it, I'm stoked!
This discussion seems to date back to about 2015 as far as the "latest" post.
I looked back at this thread and read my own comments and those of others, at least I skimmed through it until I re-read it later. But a few years back I myself trained to be a medical assistant and also phlebotomist. That is a big story in itself but as generally as I can explain it, I went to a certain "job training department which offered only a certain selection of schools to learn phlebotomy and medical assisting, not really the best schools to learn phlebotomy and medical assisting but the program paid for training in schools with low tuition fees. So I went to an obscure medical assisting school which was OK as far as learning certain things so as to pass tests, but the only training in phlebotomy provided was practicing on a dummy arm. This was in NYC. To get the phlebotomy licence from the National Phlebotomy Association you needed to only do a successful needle stick on a dummy arm in front of some "test evaluators" while making sure to follow procedures to first put on gloves, put alcohol on the "patient's" arm etc. SO the test is not really hard. I earned my "licence" just for doing the needle stick on the dummy arm properly. But after graduating from the small obscure school I found out that it is very hard to get a job as a phlebotomist because the standard requirement in clinics, laboratories hospitals and blood banks or wherever else is that you have to have done some 100 to 165 needle sticks on live people. I went around asking other phlebotomists about it whenever I went to have my own blood drawn at a clinic or whatever. Some told me that they learned phlebotomy (doing needle sticks on people not dummy arms) in a different country and they had the right experience when they came to this country (the US) but they did not have the licence but they were able to get a job in phlebotomy just for having the experience. Sometimes the experience was wanted more than the licence. And sometimes I heard about phlebotomists who had the experience but after working somewhere doing phlebotomy they wanted to work in a different place but it required the experience plus the licence so they had to then go for some kind of medical assisting or phlebotomy program to then get the licence in which case seems to mean that as experienced as the phlebotomist was at doing live needle sticks on real people, s/he would have to do a needle stick on a dummy arm in front of some "test evaluator" to qualify for the licence. In such a case it is a matter of a very experienced person doing a simple test to get a licence from the NPA. This somehow puts into question the actual value of the licence itself. But I emphasize this is what I found out about how it is in NYC as far as testing requirements and schooling requirements for phlebotomy. As I researched the issue, I found that a majority of schools whether high-profile such as LaGuardia Community College or Hostos Community College (etc) even if their Medical-Assisting training programs are good, are not really accredited by certain Medical Assisting accreditation agencies and it turns out that certain accreditation agencies are not really "authentic" or "valuable" as far as being a respected name and that is soing to watch out for.
Even the Medical Assisting certificate I got from a certain agency through the obscure school, (I think the CCMA) is not really the "gold standard" and if I did not research the matter, I would be paying some $200 every few years to "renew" my certificate but the agency itself and the certificate that they "re-authorize" may not be considered "good enough" if I try to get a job. So I never renewed with that "medical assisting" accreditation agency.
Some friends of mine have also asked on my behalf. One friend who lives in NY but goes to a Boston hospital for any medical treatment asked phlebotomists there for advice, and she said that the staff were nice and friendly in telling her what they knew. This friend of mine kept telling me that she has no idea why I could not find a job as a phlebotomists since there are so many clinics and labs and hospitals. I emphasized to her that there are jobs but that a person needs to have the "100 or more needle-stick requirement" which I was not given at the training program I went to.
I asked the managers of that obscure school I went to. They told me to try volunteering at the Red Cross or a blood bank. But that is a mixed up story in itself. When I first talked with the admissions assistant of the obscure school just before I enrolled he said that I would get the right training in the right setting and live needle sticks would be involved. But after I enrolled, whenever I talked with that admission assistant about when the live needle stick training would begin, he said that there will be NO training on live people because there are liability problems with that and that no school would provide such training on live people because of legal restrictions on such a thing .. Well after graduating (it was only a 4 month long course) I found out that all medical assisting/phlebotomy training programs, at best, may have you practice phlebotomy on fellow students in the clasoom but it still would not amount to at least 100 needle sticks. Maybe 20 at most. It would not have been worthwhile to try enrolling in a different school for more phlebotomy training. The cost would be too high and not provide what I really need to be hired as a phlebotomist.
I also did try to ask at the Red Cross. They said they absolutely do NOT accept volunteers to "train" in phlebotomy by doing needle sticks on people.
And the Veterans Administration is another long story but I went as far as going through a long process to volunteer there even though I was told that I would not be hired to do phlebotomy only office duties. I thought MAYBE I would eventually be allowed to do phlebotomy but after the long process of signing up to be a volunteer ( background check, finger printing, having friends and employers sign papers verifying about my "character" etc) I was told that they would call me . They never did. I did not pursue it.
My other friend (a fellow lab rat) asked around in clinics she volunteered as a lab rat. She said that some of the phlebotomists in the CROs or research facilities just got hired as regular workers or doing other than phlebotomy such as assisting in consent forms and doing office duties and maybe doing things as putting patches on peoples skin in skin patch studies, nothing really invasive like phlebotomy but eventually they were "promoted" to phlebotomist and trained to be phlebotomists and they did not first have to go through "dummy arm" training in a school. This other friend of mine told me that my best bet would be to try get a job in a CRO or research facility as one of those workers who will eventually be trained to do phlebotomy on live people and that I should foreseeably have soing of an edge because I already earned my phlebotomy certificate even though it does not automatically mean I have experience and furthermore, I have been a lab rat even in the facility I am trying to get a job in.
I just need the live training now. Also this lab rat friend of mine, told me that probably what has happened in the greatest scheme of things is that money has exchanged hands as far as politicians and people who run certain schools; and that means that there is soing to the effect going on that certain schools have "influenced" politicians or certain law makers or certain people who make guidelines for job-training schools so that there are no requirements of phlebotomy schools to give students those required "100 or more" needle-sticks of training, thus those training schools can get tuition money from students who enroll but not really provide the training that would best enable them to get a job as a phlebotomist. After all in nursing schools nurses are required to get certain hours of training to qualify as nurses and do certain medical procedures. But with medical assisting and phlebotomy the requirements are very lax, and I should emphasize it can definitely depend in which state you get training but in NYC phlebotomy training programs and/or medical assisting programs are not required to make sure that phlebotomy students have had at least 100 needle stick training on live people so most if not all schools do not provide it. The friend I mentioned who goes to Boston told me that she talked more and more to other phlebotomists in the Boston hospital and got information that in Boston the requirements are stricter that phlebotomists get the right hours of "live needle stick" training. The obscure school I mentioned did not really just send me to an internship either as they originally said they would. There is a story in itself there too. Hard to explain but basically, I worked years in a dermatology office before going for phlebotomy training. The obscure school told me that they have to find out if my years in a dermatology office would qualify me to do an internship with them and this was according to certain "standards" for schools or soing to that effect. It took months and I think that the obscure school was only trying to avoid me but they eventually said that my years in a dermatology office is sufficient for them to send me to an internship and they sent me to a small doctor's office in Yonkers which I mostly only did EKGs and vitals and hardly any phlebotomy. One lady I did an EKG on knew I was in training and told me that she herself works in a medical assisting training school and that she knows that training for medical assistants and phlebotomists are insufficient in most schools. The doctor who ran that small medical office and his assistant were not the best trainers and did not treat me right. They did not provide the right amount of training either. So as far as phlebotomists "training" on lab rats in clinical trials, I know that some phlebotomists are better than others. Some are learning. I am sympathetic and I do my part in allowing them to "practice" as long as they are not incompetent or so clumsy as to endanger me. I have never actually come across someone who seems really NOT to care care if s/he hurts me . That can get that person in trouble. Of course it depends on who you deal with and of course some clinics may have entire staffs or phlebotomists in training who are just not ready to be careful and accurate.
Individual rats have individual experiences.
But in being a lab rat or being a phlebotomist I have learned that it can be tough dealing with bureaucracy and corrupt systems.
Soing. Soing Soing. For some reason or no reason, whenever I type the word "soing" (some thing) it comes out as "soing." I made sure I spelled it right. I tried correcting it by editing but it seems I cannot edit the original post no matter what I do. The moderators of this site should look into this. There is a technical glitch here.
it's a known glitch. in my last post i had to change p e r c e i v i n g to viewing. we just live with it; it's not soing i can do anything about. i considered spending $1000 at a local school to gt a plebotomy certificate, but never got around to it. the local plasma center would train me if i were able to get a job there. personally i'm going to try the amazon warehouse as my next gig because i am not finding any studies right now.