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Medical and Clinical Lab Technician/Technologist

What Does a Medical and Clinical Lab Technician/Technologist do?

Clinical laboratory technologists and technicians are the people who perform chemical, microscopic, and bacteriologic laboratory tests that other medical professionals rely on.

Specific tasks include:

  • Examining and analyzing body fluids, tissues and cells for bacteria, parasites and other microorganisms;
  • Analyzing the chemical content of fluids;
  • Matching blood for transfusions;
  • Testing for drug levels in blood;
  • Preparing specimens for examination;
  • Using automated equipment and instruments, microscopes, cell counters and other sophisticated laboratory equipment

How Do I Become a Medical and Clinical Lab Technician/Technologist?

Entry-level positions as technologist generally require a bachelor’s degree in medical technology or a life scienc e, though some candidates may also qualify through a combination of on-the-job and specialized training. Technicians, who do not do the same work as technologists, generally have either an associate’s degree from a community college or a certificate from a hospital, technical school or the Armed Forces. Virginia does not require clinical laboratory technologist and technicians to be licensed. Certification is voluntary, but employers prefer to hire certified technicians and certification is often necessary for advancement.

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