Re: [Histonet] "Brit" Hitotech/Firestorm?

From:"Sarah Jones"

I have to remind you here, Diana, that you are speaking for yourself only
with your statement about "in NA we tend to stay put".  That may be for some
people.  However, I have found throughout my ~40 year career in
Histotechnology (especially in the last half of it!!) the only way to get a
decent raise is to pack up and move on.  Unfortunately, here in NA our
annual raises do not even keep up with the cost of living.  In fact, it is
down-right terrible!!  I have my HTL and got my CM recently, I am proud to
say.  However, I haven't received any additional compensation for either,
and I doubt I ever will.  (HTL for 24 yrs.)

Which brings up something else:  The ASCP used to be the American Society of
Clinical Pathologists.  It is now the American Society of Clinical
Pathology.  What changed?  I'm not sure.  Does anyone know, except the
'insiders', that is?  I do have first-hand knowledge of what used to be.
The Pathologists ran it, and they had a lot to do with where Histotechs
sat -- low on the rung of the Pathology Laboratory ladder for YEARS.  The
Registry was in my home town in Muncie, Indiana, and my Mother was the
secretary to the Registrar for many years.  (This was all before it was
centralized in Chicago.  Prior to the relocation to Chicago, the Registry
was in the town where the Chairman of the Board was located.  L. Montgomery,
M.D., was the Chairman of the Board for ~30 years that I know of, and thus
was the Registry located in Muncie.)  There are other things I could tell
you; but I was sworn to secrecy years ago, and I will honor that pledge.
Suffice it to say, the Pathologists wanted to keep the salaries of the
Histotechs down, and did everything in their power to do so.  'Nuff said!

When I started into the field of Histotechnology at the University of
Chicago back in 1965, the Techies associated with the ASCP were trying to
change the requirements for Histotechs, but to no avail.  Not until January
of 2005 did the change they were attempting to accomplish way back then
prevail.  I didn't really understand what was happening  then, but today I
do.  There are MANY places here in the USA (where there is a severe shortage
of Histotechs) where they will still hire techs that are not licensed.  In
fact, there are places where a licensed Histologic Technician OR a licensed
Histotechnologist are black-listed by the other techs--most likely in fear
that their own incompetence might be discovered!

The cost of living in certain areas of the country are no longer taken into
consideration in the way they were in the past when it comes to hiring
techs.  That also saddens me.  How is it that they think I can live in the
most expensive county in California that pays the lowest wages of any county
in California??  That is craziness in my book!!!!  Yet they wonder why they
cannot find good Histotechs here in this county!  GO FIGURE!!

Anyway, I could go on and on, but I won't.  Hope this sheds some light on
some things for some folks.  Please address any personal questions to:


----- Original Message -----
From: "Diana McCaig" 
Sent: Friday, August 05, 2005 10:41 AM
Subject: RE: [Histonet] "Brit" Hitotech/Firestorm?

> What are you all using to compare the wage scales.  Biomedical scientists
> not get paid as well as we do in North America if you factor in their cost
> of living.  I understand there is a recent trend to increase the wages in
> order to keep them on board as there is a lot of migration to various labs
> throughout a career where in NA we tend to stay put.
> Diana McCaig, MLT
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Larry Woody []
> Sent: Friday, August 05, 2005 1:35 PM
> To:;
> Subject: Re: [Histonet] "Brit" Hitotech/Firestorm?
> You may want to try some of the big biotech companies where there is
> a need for people with more skills in the lab and the compensation can be
> better than a medical lab.
> wrote:Rogerson Kemlo carries on the discussion
> about histotechnologist training.
> In regards to hospital histology labs in the USA:
> I don't want to start a firestorm of criticism here, but I think
> there is a real danger that in Great Britain those technologists
> in the histology laboratories may be over qualified.A few months ago here
> the Histonet, someone in the U.K. was bemoaning the lack of histology
> technologists in the U.K., and how short staffed they were. Was that
> the bar had been set too high? Was the level of education required too
> for the compensation received? Has a "closed shop" (to use a union term!)
> effect, been created?
> Here in the United States there are hundreds of community type
> hospitals and smaller medical centers that have histology laboratories. In
> those laboratories work histotechnologists doing a fine job with a lot
> education than a fully qualified histotechnologist in the U.K.. At the
> end of the spectrum are histology laboratories here doing more advanced
> procedures where degrees and extra training are required.
> However, histotechnology training in the U.K. and USA are inherently
> different. When I lived in the U.K. years and years ago (and it may have
> changed now), all the hospitals were government owned, lab personnel got a
> day off each week with pay to attend IMLT classes, and the classes were
> free. To work in a hospital laboratory you had to be "State Registered".
> In the USA hospitals are owned by all sorts of organizations. You
> don't get "day release" to attend classes. If you do attend classes, money
> has to come from somewhere to pay for it. Further you may live miles/hours
> from the nearest college where you can attend classes.Since the different
> organisations may be "for profit" or even "Non-profit", they want to save
> money by not paying too higher salaries. Most often they pay what other
> hospitals in the area pay for the same type work.
> The 50 states have different requirements for working in their
> hospital laboratories.
> Hospitals have coped with these differences by making histology
> laboratories a separate section of the laboratory, with
> technicians/technologists trained just to work in that lab.
> I think a histotechnologist from the U.K. could easily find a
> position in the USA, but they might feel underappreciated and underpaid!
> (maybe even under challanged!)
> Well, that's my two bits worth!
> Mike Titford
> USA Pathology
> Mobile AL USA
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