RE: Florida HT/HTL licensing catch-22

From:"Rivera, Maria L. (Tallahassee)"

What you "see" is a perfect example of not knowing what you are speaking of.

The purpose for licensing in the State of Florida is to make sure that  the
quality of care is maintained through regulation and accountability for
those who practice in ANY field of medicine.
In other words, if your livelihood depended on your license you would be
more careful or face ramifications, i.e. lose your license and therefore
your livelihood.
Right now, in most States the only "ramification" around is that a Histotech
would lose their job, then all a Histotech need to do is find another job,
where is the accountability there?

ASCP doesn't take the license away for inept Histotech's.  ASCP's concern is
to make sure you are qualified, the "policing" is left to the individual
hospitals.  Not so in Florida, the Department of Health takes licensing
seriously as a way to ensure the public of quality of care. 
All of us at one time or another have dealt with certain Histotech's that
are the techs from hell. They don't care and other than losing their jobs
they don't pay a price for the inadequacies (headache) they leave the rest
of us, who do care.

If the case was to drive up wages, it certainly did not work in Florida,
this State is probably the lowest paying around.


 -----Original Message-----
From: 	Rose Richardson [] 
Sent:	Thursday, September 27, 2001 2:43 PM
To:	Sharron Ladd; 
Subject:	Re: Florida HT/HTL licensing catch-22

Licenses  are supposed to lead to higher pay and better training, at least
that is the idea that has been tossed around in Indiana. ( with Florida used
as an example!) What I see with this situation you are caught in: the goal
is to limit availability of HT/HTL's to drive the wages up.  Big mess for
the ones left on the job, trying to take up the slack when no one can be
hired with license! Who would want to as you say take a year off for a
training program when you have a four year degree and extensive training in
the area? This arrangement is just driving interested people out of this job
market I know that it is said that the training in the school would be
better than on the job.  At least where I obtained my degree, I had to have
two semesters of general chem, two of organic chem, two of physics and an
elective from analytical or physical chem!
----- Original Message -----
From: "Sharron Ladd" 
Sent: Thursday, September 27, 2001 11:16 AM
Subject: Florida HT/HTL licensing catch-22

Please read the following. Your comments and suggestions would be
greatly appreciated!

1. I want to work as a HT/HTL in the State of Florida.
2. I have a BS degree in biology and 1 year experience working at a
university, in the faculty of medicine working with ANIMAL tissue
(processing, sectioning, staining etc.) which I don't need any special
licenses or ASCP accreditation to do.
3. Because of #2, I qualify to take both the HT and HTL exams offered by
the ASCP BOR and can sign up to do that immediately.
4. Supposing I take and pass the ASCP exam for becoming a HT, I still
need a license to work in Florida.
5. The Florida Department of Health states that the
qualifications for Histology technician licensing are as follows:
" For the category of histology, applicants must have 4 hours board
approved HIV/AIDS continuing education and board certification gained by
examination in histology through the Board of Registry of the American
Society of Clinical Pathologists certification program at the
Histotechnician (HT) level with a minimum of a high school diploma or
TRAINING PROGRAM (or FOUR years experience plus certification)."
6. If you follow me thus far, here is the catch 22. I must move to
another state to get 4 years of experience (obviously I can't get the
experience here without a license), OR I have to quit my job and sign up
for the training program. There are only 2 places in Florida that offer
the approved training program, Dianon Systems Inc. and Suncoast
Pathology and these training programs are 1 year long.
7. If you are still with me, you might be saying to yourself "oh well,
that's the price you have to pay." However, imagine you are a HT in
another state and you have worked for 3 years as a HT. You want to move
to Florida. You could not get a licence here unless you took the
training program. How ridiculous..who is going to take a training
program for something they have already been thoroughly trained to do?!?

Firstly, this could be why I see postings on histonet asking why there
are so many job openings in Florida.
Secondly, this is a major deterrant for people with degrees wanting to
become HT/HTLs. I have already taken 5 years of university in the
biological sciences as well as some Master's degree courses in advanced
molecular techniques. I really like histology but I not interested in
taking a 1 year technician program that I could have taken when I
finished high school.
Thirdly, will this lead to further shortages of HT/HTLs with degrees in
the work force?

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