[Histonet] Medical technician versus laboratory assistant

From:Gayle Callis

I hope I can offer some insight on what a medical technician or MT(ASCP) 
but laboratory assistant is left as explanation by others, hopefully from 
someone who is a laboratory assistant.  I would like to see that 
explanation myself.  In other countries, the qualifications and even titles 
can be different - Canada has a different system for training and 
subsequent title(?).

A medical technician,or MT(ASCP), in the USA will have a baccalaureate 
degree (complete four years of university) in some science curriculum which 
could be a BS in microbiology with a Med Tech option and an internship in 
an accredited laboratory/hospital setting.  After the internship, they take 
a test for certification as an MT(ASCP).    When I did my med tech 
training, 18 months internship was required before graduated from 
university - a long haul since it was 5 full years of college instead of 4 
years.  I later opted to take the HT(ASCP) histologic technician and 
HTL(ASCP) certification exams long after getting the MT(ASCP).

MT's perform complex diagnostic testing in a laboratory including 
microbiology including parasitology, urinalysis, blood chemistry, 
hematology, serology, blood gases, virology, and probably more  skills i.e. 
molecular biology related testing?    In the 60's, med tech training still 
included histology with testing on our certification exam, but that has 
changed.  The registry for histotechnicians (HT or HTL) is now a separate 
entity and certification, although potential MT's often have exposure to 
histotechnology during their training, and many MT's are also certified as 
HT and HTL's.

I will let someone else explain an laboratory assistant.  Also, the ASCP 
website should provide even more details on medical technicians.

Hope this helps to some extent.

Gayle Callis
Research Histopathology Supervisor
Veterinary Molecular Biology
Montana State University - Bozeman
Bozeman MT

At 08:28 AM 4/18/2007, you wrote:
>What is the definition of a Laboratory Assistant and a Medical

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