written by: R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen•edited by: DaniellaNicole•updated: 2/18/2010
This article discusses the job and job responsibilities of a medical technologist. It also talks a little bit about what education and training is necessary to become one.
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What does a Medical Technologist Do?
The job of a medical technologist encompasses a wide variety of responsibilities. Most medical technologists will work in clinical pathology labs where they will analyze biological samples to check for their biological/biochemical composition. They will also operate, maintain and calibrate the equipment used to ensure that it is operating efficiently and providing accurate results. Medical technologists may also provide technical support to those who are directing studies that are relevant to their work.
Medical technologists conduct numerous types of laboratory tests such as chemical tests, microscopic tests and bacteriological tests. They prepare specimens as required with things such as filters, reagents, heat or with different solutions. Once the tests have been performed and/or the specimens prepared a medical technologist will observe these tests and record all of the necessary data.
Medical technologists perform these analyses, tests, experiments and procedures to provide all of the relevant data that may pertain to the prevention, diagnosis or treatment of diseases. They perform chemical tests on spinal fluid, urine and blood to look for any normal or abnormal components. Medical technologists also assist in blood transfusions by performing blood tests to determine a person's blood type, blood group and blood compatibility.
Some medical technologists participate in medical research under the direct supervision of a chief medical technologist. Some medical technologists who have experience in their field may go on to supervise or train students who are in school to become a medical technologist.
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What Training and Education is Necessary to Become a Medical Technologist?
To become a medical technologist a person must obtain at least an Associates degree in the biological sciences. Many employers prefer their candidates to possess a Bachelors degree in the biological sciences. While many medical technologists work in clinical pathology labs that are located in hospitals, clinics or other similar facilities, some prefer to specialize in areas such as chemistry, hematology, histology, serology, bacteriology, immunohematology or a blood bank. Those who choose to specialize may need to obtain further education related to their desired specialty. Most employers will also require their medical technologists to be ASCP certified.
Unknown. (2008). Medical Technologist: A Description for the Medical Technologist Job. Retrieved on January 21, 2009 from Job-Descriptions. Website: http://www.job-descriptions.org/medical-technologist.html