Attn. Educators/Interested Parties - Revision of HT Essentials/St andards
> To: 'firstname.lastname@example.org'
> Subject: Attn. Educators/Interested Parties - Revision of HT
> NAACLS has commissioned a task force to revise the current HT
> Essentials/Standards. The task force is composed of Norton German, MD;
> Sue Reynolds, MA, HTL(ASCP); John Ryan, MA, HTL(ASCP) and myself. We are
> looking for your input to help revise the "Standards" of Accredited
> Educational Programs for the Histologic Technician (HT).
> Please read/print the document (it is rather long)at the bottom of this
> message and help us:
If you would like this proposal in a Word doc. please contact me
offline and I will send it to you as an attachment.
> 1. ...with the "Description of the Histologic Technician on page 1.(Ist
> 2. ...with the Description of Career Entry of the Histotechnician on page
> 2.(2nd priority)
> 3. ...with the Curriculum (described on pages 7-8). (3rd priority)
> 4. ...anything else
> The "Standards" are the "Requirements for Accreditation" set by NAACLS.
> they are divivded into six(6) parts:
> 1. Sponsorship
> 2. Resources
> 3. Curriculum
> 4. Students
> 5. Program Evaluation
> 6. Maintaining Accreditation
> Dr. Norton German, HT/HTL Pathology Educator from Youngstown, Ohio, who is
> on the NAACLS accreditation committee, asked me to pass along the draft,
> and to ask for the input of all program directors as well as ALL
> interested persons. Please respond to Dr. German or myself sometime in
> this month of February, so the committee can begin to make modifications.
> 1. There is a name change from Essentials to Standards.
> 2. BEGINNING HT:
> Just as a reminder - we are looking at what the HT profession is/should
> be. NOT the HTL (the HTL standards will be written later, as separate
> Also, this is for students during their training, or immediately upon
> graduation. Please do not make comments concerning HTs who have been
> working in the field for 20 years.
> 3. EDUCATION/TRAINING:
> Make certain the Standards will work for those NAACLS programs that are
> based in colleges, hospitals, private labs, technical schools, etc.
> Make certain the Standards will work for NAACLS programs taking student
> after high school, some college, up through an associate degree.
> 4. PAGE 2 of the document:
> Norton and committee would like ALL of our input into what routine
> histologic procedures HTs do.
> Please refer to the new MLT (and MT) Standards that have been approved,
> found on the NAACLS home page: http://www.naacls.org/accreditation
> These will provide suggestions for procedures.
> 5. PARALLEL:
> As much as possible, we would like to make the MLT and HT parallel (and
> later, the MT and HTL).
> 6. PROGRAM DIRECTOR QUALIFICATIONS:
> Page 4 of the document
> Input is needed as to the qualifications of a program director, and if an
> education coordinator is needed.
> Remember, the qualifications for a MLT program director is a Masters or
> PhD. Do we want to make it parallel, or have the education level less? How
> much less?
> If it takes a MA or PhD to be the program director of a MLT program, what
> does it say about our profession if the program director of a HT program
> does not need a degree, or only an associate degree? Or only a BA/BS?
> Please think a lot about this. This was a stumbling block for the 1995
> Essentials. At that time, we made the program director for HT and HTL to
> have a BA/BS, and the education coordinator of the HT to have an AA/AS,
> but for the HTL program a BA/BS.
> Yet some programs found it difficult to find a BA/BS program director, so
> had to have the MT or MLT program director be the program director for the
> HT program, and the histotech with the AA/AS degree be the education
> What happens if we drop the ability to have an education coordinator?
> What happens if all program directors must have a BA/BS? What if it's a
> MA/MS or a PhD?
> But if ASCP is now requiring OJT to be a minimum of AA/AS, what would it
> say about our program directors if they had AA/AS or only a high school
> Please, NAACLS needs your input on this.
> 7. MEDICAL DIRECTOR:
> This is being dropped as a requirement. An Advisory Committee will now be
> required, which could include a pathologist.
> What's your Opinion?
> Note: if you still want to have a Medical Director, you can. It just won't
> be required by NAACLS, if this Standard continues.
> Those are the major changes for right now.
> But PLEASE send all comments and questions to the chair of the NAACLS HT
> Standards committee:
> Dr. Norton German, email@example.com
> DEADLINE IS END OF February!
> The Standards of Accredited Educational Programs
> for the
> are published by the
> National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences
> 8410 West Bryn Mawr Avenue, Suite 670
> Chicago, Illinois 60631-3415
> 773.714.8880 Phone
> 773.714.8886 Fax
> firstname.lastname@example.org Email
> http://www.naacls.org Web Site
> Essentials (Standards) initially adopted
> revised 1978, 1986, 1995, 2002
> Adopted by the
> National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences
> Copyright 2002 NAACLS
> The purpose of these Standards and the Description of the Profession is to
> establish, maintain, and promote standards of quality for educational
> programs in the clinical laboratory sciences and to provide recognition
> for educational programs which meet or exceed the minimum standards
> outlined in this document.
> The Standards are to be used for the development and evaluation of
> histotechnician (histologic technician) programs. Paper reviewers and
> site visit teams assist in the evaluation of the program's compliance with
> the Standards. Lists of accredited programs are published for the
> information of students, employers, and the public.
> DESCRIPTION OF THE HISTOTECHNICIAN PROFESSION
> The histotechnician is qualified by academic and applied science education
> to provide service and research in histotechnology and related areas in
> rapidly changing and dynamic healthcare delivery systems.
> Histotechnicians perform, develop, evaluate, correlate and assure accuracy
> and validity of laboratory results; direct and supervise histology
> laboratory resources and operations; and collaborate in the diagnosis and
> treatment of patients. The histotechnician has diverse and multi-level
> functions in the areas of analysis and clinical decision-making,
> information management, regulatory compliance, education, and quality
> assurance/performance improvement wherever histologic testing is
> researched, developed or performed. Histotechnicians possess skills for
> financial, operations, marketing, and human resource management of the
> histology laboratory. Histotechnicians practice independently and
> collaboratively, being responsible for their own actions, as defined by
> the profession. They have the requisite knowledge and skills to educate
> laboratory professionals, other health care professionals, and others in
> laboratory practice as well as the public.
> The ability to relate to people, a capacity for calm and reasoned
> judgment and a demonstration of commitment to the patient are essential
> qualities. Communication skills extend to consultative interactions with
> members of the healthcare team, external relations, customer service and
> patient education. Histotechnicians demonstrate ethical and moral
> attitudes and principles that are necessary for gaining and maintaining
> the confidence of patients, professional associates, and the community.
> DESCRIPTION OF CAREER ENTRY OF THE HISTOTECHNICIAN
> At career entry, The histotechnician will be able to perform routine
> histologic procedures (such as *.*
> and other emerging diagnostics) as the primary analyst making specimen
> oriented decisions on predetermined criteria, including a working
> knowledge of criteria requirements. Communications skills will extend to
> frequent interactions with members of the healthcare team, external
> relations, customer service, and patient education. The level of analyses
> range from bedside to complex histology laboratory procedures in the
> various major areas of histology. The histotechnician will have diverse
> functions in areas of pre-analytic, analytic, and post-analytic processes.
> The histotechnician will have responsibilities for information processing,
> training, and quality control monitoring wherever histologic procedures
> are performed.
> Standards of Accredited Educational Programs
> for the
> REQUIREMENTS FOR ACCREDITATION
> I. SPONSORSHIP
> 1. Institutional Affiliation
> The sponsoring institution and affiliates, clinical and/or academic,
> if any, must be accredited by recognized regional and/or national
> In programs in which the education is provided by two or more
> institutions, responsibilities of the sponsoring institution and of each
> affiliate for program administration, instruction, and supervision must be
> described in writing and signed by both parties. All provisions of the
> agreement must be active with written documentation of the following
> A. General
> 1. Reason for the agreement
> 2. Responsibilities of the academic facility
> 3. Responsibilities of the clinical facility
> 4. Joint responsibilities
> B. Specific
> 1. Supervisory responsibilities for the students
> 2. Student professional liability coverage
> 3. Student health and safety policies
> 4. Provision for renewal
> 5. Termination clause providing for program completion of
> enrolled students
> 2. Acceptable Institutions
> Educational programs must be established in:
> A. colleges and universities;
> B. community and junior colleges
> C. vocational technical schools authorized to grant the associate
> D. hospitals and medical centers;
> E. other post-secondary institutions or consortia which meet
> standards for education in histotechnology.
> 3. Sponsoring Institution's Responsibilities
> Accreditation is granted to the institution that assumes primary
> responsibility for curriculum planning and selection of course content;
> coordinates classroom teaching and applied education; appoints faculty to
> the program; receives and processes applications for admission; and grants
> the associate degree or certificate documenting completion of the program.
> A. The sponsoring institution or consortium must be responsible for
> providing assurance that the activities assigned to students in the
> clinical setting are educational.
> B. There must be documented ongoing communication between the
> sponsoring institution and its affiliates for exchange of information and
> coordination of the program.
> II. RESOURCES
> 4. General Resources
> Resources must support the number of students admitted into the
> program. The instructor to student ratio must be adequate to achieve the
> stated program goals.
> 5. Program Administration
> A. Program Director
> 1. The program must have a qualified program director.
> 2. Responsibilities
> The program director must be responsible for the
> organization, administration, periodic review, planning, development,
> evaluation and general effectiveness of the program. The program director
> must have input into budget preparation and must be responsible for
> maintaining NAACLS accreditation of the program.
> 3. Qualifications
> The program director must be a (histotechnologist?)
> or histotechnician(?) who holds nationally recognized certification and
> who has an associates(?) degree, baccalaureate(?) degree, or master's(?)
> degree and three years of experience in histotechnology education that
> includes teaching courses, conducting and managing learning experiences,
> evaluating student
> achievement, providing input into curriculum
> development, policy and procedure formulation, and evaluation of program
> effectiveness. The program director must have a knowledge of education
> and administration as well as current accreditation/certification
> 4. Faculty Appointments
> The program director must have a faculty appointment
> at the sponsoring institution or must have faculty appointments in each
> affiliated academic institution. In the case of a clinically based
> program, the program director's appointment at affiliated academic
> institutions may be a regular one, a non-salaried clinical or courtesy
> appointment, or an adjunct appointment, depending upon the regulations of
> the academic institution.
> B. Advisory Committee
> 1. There must be an advisory committee composed of individual(s)
> from the community of interest (i.e. pathologists, other physicians,
> scientific consultants, academic professionals, administrators, practicing
> histotechnologists(?), practicing histotechnicians(?), and other
> professionals who have knowledge of histotechnology education.
> 2. Responsibilities
> The advisory committee of the program shall have
> input into any aspect of the program / curriculum with regard to its
> current relevancy and effectiveness.
> 6. Faculty
> The program must have qualified faculty (e.g., histotechnologists,
> histotechnicians, physicians, administrators, and managers).
> A. Responsibilities
> The faculty must participate in teaching courses, supervising
> applied laboratory learning experiences, evaluating student achievement,
> developing curriculum, formulating policy and procedure, and evaluating
> program effectiveness.
> B. Qualifications
> Faculty designated by the program must demonstrate adequate
> knowledge and proficiency in their content areas and the ability to teach
> effectively at the appropriate level.
> C. Professional Development
> The program must assure and document ongoing professional
> development of the program faculty to assure that the faculty members are
> able to fulfill their instructional responsibilities.
> 7. Financial Resources
> Financial resources for continued operation of the educational
> program must be ensured by an adequate, institutionally approved budget or
> by a statement of continued financial support from an executive officer of
> the sponsoring institution.
> 8. Physical Resources
> A. Facilities
> Classrooms, laboratories, administrative offices and other
> facilities must be adequate, equipped for safety, and must be in
> compliance with pertinent governmental laws.
> B. Equipment and Supplies
> Each student must have reasonable access to and experience with
> modern equipment and supplies.
> C. Information Resources
> Each student must have reasonable access to information resources
> containing current editions of books, periodicals and other reference
> materials in contemporary formats related to all content areas of the
> D. Instructional Resources
> Adequate instructional resources must be available to facilitate
> each student's attainment of entry level competencies.
> E. Computer Technology
> Each student must have access to and experience with contemporary
> computer technology.
> III. CURRICULUM
> 9. Curricular Requirements
> A. Curricular Structure
> Instruction must follow a plan which documents a structured
> curriculum composed of general education, basic sciences, mathematics, and
> professional courses including applied (clinical) education. The
> curriculum must include clearly written program goals and competencies
> with syllabi which include individual course goals and objectives.
> The curriculum must include all the major subject areas
> currently offered in the contemporary clinical histopathology laboratory.
> Behavioral objectives which address cognitive, psychomotor, and affective
> domains must be provided for didactic and applied (clinical practice)
> aspects of the program and must include clinical significance and
> correlation. Course objectives must show progression to the level
> consistent with entry into the profession.
> The applied courses must be taught in a clinically equipped
> teaching laboratory on the college campus, in an affiliated clinical
> facility, or in both facilities sufficient for developing basic skills,
> understanding principles, and mastering the procedures involved.
> B. Instructional Areas
> The curriculum must include principles of:
> 1. Methodologies for all major areas currently practiced by
> a modern histopathology laboratory, including problem solving and
> troubleshooting techniques;
> 2. Collecting, processing, and analyzing biological
> specimens and other substances;
> 3. Laboratory result use in diagnosis and treatment;
> 4. Communications sufficient to serve the needs of
> patients and the public;
> 5. Technical training sufficient to orient new
> 6. Quality assessment in the laboratory;
> 7. Laboratory safety and regulatory compliance;
> 8. Information processing in the clinical
> histopathology laboratory;
> 9. Ethical and professional conduct; and,
> 10. Significance of continued professional development.
> C. Learning Experiences
> The learning experiences needed in the curriculum to develop
> and support entry level competencies must be properly sequenced and
> include instructional materials, classroom presentation, discussion,
> demonstrations, laboratory sessions, supervised clinical practice and
> 1. Student experiences must be educational and balanced so
> that all competencies can be achieved.
> 2. Student experiences at different clinical sites must
> be comparable to enable all students to achieve entry level competencies.
> 3. Policies and processes by which students may perform
> service work must be published and made known to all concerned in order to
> avoid practices in which students are substituted for regular staff.
> After demonstrating proficiency, students, with qualified supervision, may
> be permitted to perform procedures. Service work by students in clinical
> settings outside of academic hours must be noncompulsory.
> D. Evaluations
> Written criteria for passing, failing, and progression in
> the program must be provided. These must be given to each student at the
> time of entry into the program. Evaluation systems must be related to the
> objectives and competencies described in the curriculum for both didactic
> and applied education components. They must be employed frequently enough
> to provide students and faculty with timely indications of the students'
> academic standing and progress and to serve as a reliable indicator of the
> effectiveness of instruction and course design.
> IV. STUDENTS
> 10. Program Description / Publications
> Students must be provided with a clear description of the
> program and its content and current publications, which must include:
> A. program mission statement;
> B. program goals and competencies;
> C. course objectives;
> D. applied education assignments(if applicable);
> E. admission criteria, both academic and non-academic;
> F. a list of course descriptions;
> G. names and academic rank or title of the program
> director and faculty;
> H. tuition and fees with refund policies;
> I. causes for dismissal;
> J. rules and regulations;
> K. a listing of clinical facilities (if applicable);
> L. essential functions; and,
> M. policies and procedures when applied experience
> cannot be guaranteed.
> 11. Admissions
> Admission of students, including advanced placement, if
> available, must be made in accordance with the clearly defined and
> published practices of the institution. Specific academic standards and
> essential functions required for admission to the program must be clearly
> defined, published and provided to prospective students, and made
> available to the public. The signature of the student, indicating full
> u7nderstanding of the policies for progression in the program and
> completion of the program, must be secured.
> 12. Acceptable Conduct
> Rules and regulations governing acceptable personal and
> academic conduct must be defined and provided to all students upon
> entering the program.
> 13. Student Records
> Student records must be maintained for admission,
> evaluation, and counseling or advising sessions. Individual grades and
> credits for courses must be recorded and permanently maintained by the
> sponsoring institution. The program must maintain the student records,
> conforming to any governmental regulations and the regulations of any
> other accrediting agencies.
> 14. Health and Safety
> There must be a procedure for determining that each
> applicant's or student's health will permit the individual to meet the
> written essential functions of the program. Students must be informed of
> and have access to the usual student health care services of the
> institution. The health and safety of students, faculty, and patients
> associated with educational activities must be safeguarded. Emergency
> medical care must be available for students while in attendance.
> 15. Guidance
> Guidance must be available to assist students in
> understanding and observing program policies and practices, for advising
> on professional and career issues, and for providing counseling or
> referral for personal and financial problems that may interfere with
> progress in the program. Confidentiality and impartiality must be
> maintained in dealing with student problems.
> 16. Appeal Procedures
> Appeal procedures must be distributed to students upon
> entering the program. They must include provisions for academic and
> non-academic types of grievances and a mechanism for neutral evaluation
> that ensures due process and fair disposition.
> 17. Fair Practices
> A. Programmatic announcements must accurately reflect
> the program offered and include NAACLS' name, address, and phone number.
> B. Student recruitment and admission must be
> non-discriminatory in accordance with existing governmental regulations
> and the regulations of any other accrediting agencies applicable to the
> C. Faculty recruitment and employment practices must be
> non-discriminatory in accordance with existing governmental regulations
> and the regulations of any other accrediting agencies applicable to the
> D. Academic credits and costs to the student must be
> accurately stated, published, and made known to all applicants.
> E. Policies and procedures for student withdrawal and
> refunds of tuition and fees must be published and made known to all
> F. If more than one histotechnology program is offered
> at an institution, the sponsoring institution must demonstrate that each
> program is being conducted to assure appropriate instruction for the
> students at the different educational levels.
> G. The program must culminate in an associate degree or in
> a certificate for the student who enters the program with an associate
> degree or higher. The granting of the degree or certificate must not be
> contingent upon the student's passing any type of external certification
> or licensure examination. Academic standards for the program must be
> acceptable to the institution that grants the degree or certificate.
> H. A written record of all formal student complaints
> and resolution must be maintained.
> I. Program evaluation information, including
> graduation, placement, and any certification pass rates must be made
> available to NAACLS upon request.
> VI. PROGRAM EVALUATION
> 18. Systematic Review
> There must be a mechanism for continually and systematically
> reviewing the effectiveness of the program to include survey and
> evaluation instruments that incorporate feedback from a combination of
> students, employers, faculty, graduates, exit or final examinations, and
> accreditation review.
> 19. Outcome Measures
> A review of outcomes measures (e.g. external certifying examination
> results, results from capstone projects) from the three preceding years
> must be documented, analyzed, and used in the program evaluation.
> 20. Graduation and Placement Rates
> A review of graduation rates and placement rates must be documented,
> analyzed, and used in the program evaluation.
> 21. Program Evaluation and Modification
> The results of program evaluations must be documented and reflected
> in ongoing curriculum development and program modification, followed by an
> analysis of the effectiveness of any changes implemented.
> VII. MAINTAINING ACCREDITATION
> 22. Program / Sponsoring Institution Responsibilities
> Programs are required to comply with administrative requirements for
> maintaining accreditation, including:
> A. Submitting the Self-Study Report, an Application for
> Continuing Accreditation, or a required Progress Report as determined by
> B. Paying accreditation fees, as determined by NAACLS;
> C. Informing NAACLS of relevant administrative and operational
> changes within 30 days. This includes changes in program official names,
> addresses or telephone numbers; affiliates, status (e.g., inactivity,
> closure) or location; and institution name.
> D. Completing an Annual Report prescribed by NAACLS and
> returning it by the established deadline;
> E. Verifying compliance with these Standards upon request from
> NAACLS; and,
> F. Agreeing to a site visit date before the end of the period
> for which accreditation was awarded.
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