Medical Lab Technician: Duties, Skills, and Education Requirements

Medical Lab Technician
Medical Lab Technician

The healthcare industry plays a big role in the development of a country. They not only provide medical care for patients but also bring job opportunities such as doctors, nurses, and other individuals working behind the scenes with different areas of expertise like medical lab technicians. Who are medical lab technicians? What are the necessary skills and qualifications to become one? This post will cover a deep look at this unique position.

What is a Medical Lab Technician?

A medical lab technician is a professional performing necessary tests on patient samples. Normally,  patients need to take blood and tissue cell tests to reveal what really affects a person and what treatment methods need to apply.

Then the results of a medical lab technician’s tests are interpreted by physicians. Therefore, they are an important career to provide accurate results for patients. Medical lab technicians also work directly with doctors on the diagnostic process to give effective medical care for patients. 

What are Medical Lab Technician duties?

Medical lab technicians (medical laboratory assistants or clinical lab technicians) work under the direction of a medical laboratory technologist. Generally, medical lab technicians most often work in a lab but sometimes they have the responsibility of collecting samples from patients due to the needs and constraints of their workplace. 

What are Medical Lab Technician duties?
What are Medical Lab Technician duties?

5 common duties of a medical lab technician

  • Analyze body fluids (like blood, urine) and tissue samples, then record their findings
  • Study blood samples for use in transfusions
  • Operation of lab equipment like microscopes and cell counters
  • Use automated equipment and computerized instruments to conduct large-scale testing
  • Log in data into medical records

Where do Medical Lab Technicians work?

Medical lab technicians work in laboratories in hospitals, doctor’s offices, clinics, diagnostic laboratories, and research facilities. Each work environment also comes with significant differences that require medical lab technicians to always try their best to improve technical skills. 

Due to working with patient samples, it’s very easy to infect. So medical lab technicians must wear lab coats, masks, goggles, and gloves when working with samples.

Technical Skills to Become a Medical Lab Technician

Medical lab technicians need a strong understanding of specific procedures and protocols. What are employers seeking in this medical lab technician career? We are listing some important skills to pursue this path.

  • Quality assurance and control
  • Chemistry
  • Phlebotomy
  • Laboratory testing
  • Patient care
  • Customer service
  • Laboratory equipment
  • Data entry
  • Microbiology
  • Specimen collecting

Additionally, they also need to have critical thinking, communication skills, and a well-tuned eye to see the smallest abnormality for an accurate diagnosis.

Technical Skills
Technical Skills

Educational Requirements for Medical Lab Technicians

If you want to become a medical lab technician, you need to have a postsecondary certificate or an Associate’s degree with many important technical skills related to this field. The BLS states that medical lab technicians usually. The medical lab technologist career also requires a license to launch in the healthcare industry. 

Medical Lab Technician – Is it a potential job?

Based on the BLS report, Medical Lab Technicians earned the median salary of $52,330 in 2018. This is a sustainable salary range compared with other careers.  The Medical Lab Technician also is expected to grow 11% in the period 2018-2028.

Now you can understand the basic information about the medical lab technician job. The job decision is in your hand! Take a look at some advice for people who want to enter this field!