Re: Recent disturbing postings

From:Sarah Jones

Dear David,
  As Sean Connery said in The Rock, "thank you for proving my point"!.  Obviously the notion of "teamwork" does not exist in your idea of the workplace.  
  At one hospital I worked at, I covered for the secretary when she was out AND did all the histology work that day.  It was not in my job description to do those tasks.  Transcription and histology are as far apart as a nurse and dietary. She also came back and helped me assession when I was busy. 
  Your attitude proves the point of the first email on the subject where they were having trouble with the PA.  I wouldn't want to work with you.
  I can gross with the best of them, assist on fine needle aspirates, assist on bone marrows etc.  It was just part of the job to me.  And I enjoy learning new things so it made the job more interesting.  
  I'm so glad you told us there is nothing wrong with being a histotech!  I can stop going to therapy now!
  What ever happened to teamwork?  Sarah

Sarah Jones HT(ASCP)
Dept. of Vet. Anatomy & Public Health
Histology Lab
Texas A&M University
College Station, TX 77843-4458
phone: 979-845-3177
fax:  979-458-3499

>>> David Costanzo  06/27/03 12:31 PM >>>
Today someone handed me copies of several posts from this listserv on
the subject of pathologist's assitants. I have to say they are quite
alarming and amazing at the same time.
Terry Murphy says "the majority of them......arrogant and self serving"
Elliott Osterhaus, M.D., Ph.D. writes: "from the $40-55 per hour they
get, they don't appear to do much"
These are disturbing accusations. First, on average a path assistant
DOES NOT earn $55.00 per hour, NOT EVEN CLOSE. That would amount to
$123,200 per year. In a recent survey I conducted nobody earned that
much (60 respondents). The average is far lower. As a matter of fact 95%
of path assistants earn less than $39.00 per hour.
Even more disturbing is the continuing trend to attmept a comparison
between path assistants and histotechnologists. There is ABSOLUTELY
NOTHING WRONG with being a histotech. I do not feel they are inferior,
nor do I feel the environmental staff at the hospital are inferior.
However, comparing a histotch to a University trained path assistant is
not apples to apples. Many of you may feel hostility because you know of
a histotech that trained on the job and poof - became a path assistant.
I assure you if this is the case (AND they passed the national AAPA
exam) they were held to the same difficult standards that us University
trained path assistants were held to. They are just as deserving of the
job as I am. Just because they got their start as a histotech does not
mean that they are stilll histotechs. Many M.D.'s started out in nursing
- does that mean a nurse can suggest he/she is of the same calibre
still? Of course not!
Do not hold resentment to pathologists assistants because you think they
should be held responsible for helping you do YOUR job in busy times.
Who helps them when they are busy? It is not your job to gross a few
colons to help them, likewise it is not their job to cut controls for
you, or accession for that matter. The job of a path assistant is
different than the job of a histotech, we just work in the same room.
You have your duties, I have mine. I know nothing about
immunohistochemistry, and a tech knows nothing about staging a cancer
case. Our roles are different. Stop the senseless bickering and
comparison of apples to bananas. It is ridiculous.
We are supposed to, as adults, work together with positive attitudes. We
are all here to serve the patient. This does not appear to be the case
in instances reported on this listserv, but they are not from my
experience the rule. I have never had a problem with a histotech, I have
made many friends at work. I am not sure what your problems are, or
where they arise. But be sure to remember a path assistant has as much
duty to do histology work as an OR nurse has to cook for the cafeteria.

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