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Laboratory Services

Medical Laboratory Technician

Career data updated last on 9/9/2014
Medical Laboratory Technician Medical laboratory technicians (MLTs) perform tests on tissue, blood and body fluids to help the physician diagnose and treat disease. They often work under the supervision of a medical technologist to use microscopes, computers and other laboratory equipment. Their duties include collecting blood specimens, carrying out testing procedures using a variety of instruments, monitoring the quality of tests and procedures, and reporting results. MLTs may work in several areas of the laboratory or may specialize in one area.
Salary $20.61/hourly- $42,860 yearly
Significant Points Employment of clinical laboratory workers is expected to grow about as fast as the average for all occupations through the year 2010. Expected growth is about 10-20% through 2010. The fastest growth is expected in independent laboratories as hospitals continue to send out their lab work.
Work Environment Most medical laboratory technicians work in hospital laboratories under the supervision of medical technologists. Others are employed by private physicians, public health laboratories, medical research facilities, pharmaceutical companies, universities, industrial medical laboratories and the armed forces. Hours vary according to the size and type of employment setting. In large hospitals or in independent laboratories that operate continuously, personnel usually work the day, evening or night shift and may work weekends and holidays. Laboratory personnel in small facilities may work on rotating shifts, rather than on a regular shift. In some facilities, laboratory personnel are on call several nights a week or on weekends, in case of an emergency
High School Prep A high school diploma or equivalent is required. Courses in mathematics, biology, computers, and chemistry are recommended.
Academic Requirements Medical or clinical laboratory technicians must have an associate degree or certificate in laboratory science with an emphasis in chemistry or biology from an accredited community college. Must include integration of a one year clinical laboratory experience with academic courses. In addition, they must pass an exam given by one of three agencies: the Board of Registry of Medical Technologists of the American Society of Clinical Pathologists, the National Certification Agency for Medical Laboratory Personnel, or by American Medical Technologists. Technicians can become technologists through additional education and experience. Some states require laboratory personnel to be licensed or registered. Information is available from state department of health boards. Certification is a voluntary process by which a non-governmental organization grants recognition to an individual whose professional competence meets prescribed standards.


Arapahoe Community College
Associate Degree Associate

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