ACUTE CARE, INC. Supports Series – Laboratory Professionals

ACUTE CARE, INC. Supports Series – Laboratory Professionals


ACUTE CARE, INC.‘s affiliated providers work closely with, and depend on the essential contribution of hospital-based laboratory professionals.

The American Society for Clinical Laboratory Science (ASCLS) defines a laboratory professional as:

Medical laboratory science professionals, often called medical laboratorians, are vital healthcare detectives, uncovering and providing laboratory information from laboratory analyses that assist physicians in patient diagnosis and treatment, as well as in disease monitoring or prevention (maintenance of health). We use sophisticated biomedical instrumentation and technology, computers, and methods requiring manual dexterity to perform laboratory testing on blood and body fluids. Laboratory testing encompasses such disciplines as clinical chemistry, hematology, immunology, immunohematology, microbiology, and molecular biology. Medical laboratory science professionals generate accurate laboratory data that are needed to aid in detecting cancer, heart attacks, diabetes, infectious mononucleosis, and identification of bacteria or viruses that cause infections, as well as in detecting drugs of abuse. In addition, we monitor testing quality and consult with other members of the healthcare team.

The medical laboratory science profession has more than one career track based on level of education: medical laboratory technician (2 years) and medical laboratory scientist (4 to 5 years). Medical laboratory technicians are competent in the collection, processing, and analysis of biological specimens; the performance of lab procedures; the maintenance of instruments; and relating lab findings to common diseases/conditions. Medical laboratory scientists have a more extensive theoretical knowledge base. Therefore they not only perform laboratory procedures including very sophisticated analyses, but also evaluate/interpret the results, integrate data, problem solve, consult, conduct research, and develop new test methods.

The laboratory team has a number of individuals with specific, and specialized roles in the department. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Laboratory Director
  • Pathologists.
  • Technical and General Supervisors
  • Medical Laboratory Scientist (MLS), Medical Technologist (MT), Clinical Laboratory Scientist (CLS)
  • Clinical Laboratory Technician (CLT) or Medical Laboratory Technician (MLT) , and
  • Phlebotomist (PBT)

Medical Laboratory Professionals Week is scheduled for April 18-24. ASCLS notes:

Medical Laboratory Professionals Week (MLPW) provides the profession with a unique opportunity to increase public understanding of and appreciation for clinical laboratory personnel.

MLPW, which takes place the last full week in April each year, is coordinated by a collaborative committee with representatives from 17 national clinical laboratory organizations, including ASCLS. Now in it’s 44th year, it is important to reflect on the important history of MLPW.

ACUTE CARE, INC. supports our hospital-based clinical laboratory professional colleagues.

Paul Hudson, FACHE
Chief Operating Officer