To become a California Certified Phlebotomy Technician (CPT), you must meet the eligibility requirements, apply for state licensure, pass the National CPT exam, submit fingerprints and undergo a background check and complete a course with an approved Phlebotomy training school like If you are already a certified phlebotomist from a state outside of California, you will need to meet the same requirements to obtain a California CPT license.

California does not have reciprocity agreements for phlebotomy licenses with any other states. This means that even if you hold a phlebotomy license from another state, you will still need to meet California’s specific requirements and obtain a California CPT license before working as a phlebotomist in California.

If you are an experienced Phlebotomist and whether or not have your license or certification from a state other than California but want to obtain a California CPT license as a certified phlebotomist, you will need to:

  1. Meet the eligibility requirements: You must meet the eligibility requirements to become a CPT in California, which include completing an approved phlebotomy training program and passing a national certification exam. You may need to complete additional training or education to meet California’s specific requirements. RCI has a specific shorter accelerated program approved for Advanced phlebotomy students who are experienced in drawing blood but not yet CA licensed. Please call us for details as there are specific criteria that must be met for each individual applicant.
  2. Apply for licensure: You will need to submit an application for licensure to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH). The application will include documentation of your education and certification, as well as any other required information. RCI students will have the help of our student services staff for this process. We make it easy!
  3. Undergo a background check: RCI coordinates this with all of our students.
  4. Obtain liability insurance: You will need to obtain liability insurance as a condition of licensure. RCI coordinates for this students as well.

If you are an experienced phlebotomist, you may be eligible for exemption from the formal phlebotomy training program of 80 hours. To qualify for exemption from the formal phlebotomy training program and to qualify for the shortened 20-40 hours of training, you will need to provide evidence of your work experience as a phlebotomist. California requires at least 1,040 hours of work experience as a phlebotomist within the last five years to qualify for exemption from the training program. You will need to provide documentation of your work experience, such as a letter from your employer, and pass an examination on basic phlebotomy skills to demonstrate your competency. RCI has all the correct forms and can provide all the instructions necessary to complete this. We offer this for our students only as a free service.

Once you have completed all of the requirements for licensure in California, including passing the National CPT exam, undergoing a background check, and completing an appropriate CDPH training program, you will be eligible to apply for your CPT1 license in California.

To find CDPH approved phlebotomy schools in California such as RCI (Regan Career Institute), you can visit the CDPH Laboratory Field Services (LFS) website. The LFS maintains a list of approved phlebotomy training programs in California, which can be accessed on their website.

Here are the steps to find CDPH approved phlebotomy schools:

  1. Go to the CDPH Laboratory Field Services website:
  2. Click on “Phlebotomy Technician Training Program” from the list of program links.
  3. On the Phlebotomy Technician Training Program page, click on “Approved Phlebotomy Training Programs” link.
  4. The approved phlebotomy training programs list will be displayed, and you can select the county you are interested in to see the approved schools in that area.
  5. You can also search the list by school name or program type.

It’s important to note that while completing an approved phlebotomy training program is one of the requirements for obtaining a California CPT license, not all approved schools offer the same level of training or curriculum. It’s important to research the schools thoroughly and choose a program that meets your needs and provides the education and training necessary to meet California’s licensure requirements. RCI has been training Phlebotomist in Southern California since 2004, almost 20 years. We offer a short 80 hour (or 20-40hr for Advanced students) at convenient schedules for working individuals.