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The Role of a Medical Laboratory Technician

Typically, medical laboratory technicians work in hospital or laboratory settings and spend most of their time in lab coats, gloves, goggles and masks. Working in a laboratory setting means that medical lab techs are exposed to bacteria and pathogens on a regular basis, so taking extra safety precautions is a must.

The exciting role of a medical lab tech is to play detective by running tests and analyzing specimen samples to help physicians in the diagnosis and treatment of patients. No day in the field is the same, and each individual case presents its own unique challenges. Much of the excitement in this field surrounds the problem-solving and diagnosis of medical illnesses.

On any given day, a medical laboratory technician can be responsible for:

  • Collecting blood or specimen samples from patients
  • Receiving tissue samples from patients
  • Logging patient samples and preparing them for tests
  • Setting up lab equipment
  • Conducting routine tests and analyses of samples
  • Cleaning equipment and maintaining a sterile laboratory environment

The intrigue of performing tests to solve a medical mystery is a popular reason that people enter the field. While most tests yield typical results, there is always the chance that a complicated analysis could be necessary. Professionals in this field tend to perform well under pressure and enjoy problem-solving.

What You can Expect as a Medical Laboratory Technician

Medical laboratory technicians are usually employed in a hospital or private laboratory. Because of the technical nature of the job, it is necessary to work in sterile environments where patients can get timely results to their tests.

Working in a hospital allows for a more flexible schedule, as testing is constantly being needed by emergency rooms patients, in-patients and out-patients. The work of a laboratory technician is never finished, especially in a hospital. The work of a medical lab tech is critical to physicians, patients and other medical professionals that rely on their testing and analyses to help in treatments and diagnoses.

If you would love to work in a fast-paced field where you can be a vital member of a team of medical professionals, find a career-focused medical laboratory technician training program near you.

Program availability and / or degree offerings subject to change. Employment and salary are not guaranteed.