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Medical/Clinical Laboratory Technician

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Associate's degree

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What They Do

Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technicians Career Video

Performs routine medical laboratory tests for the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. May work under the supervision of a medical technologist.

This career is part of the Health Science cluster Diagnostic Services pathway.

A person in this career:

  • Conducts chemical analyses of body fluids, such as blood or urine, using microscope or automatic analyzer to detect abnormalities or diseases and enter findings into computer.
  • Analyzes the results of tests or experiments to ensure conformity to specifications, using special mechanical or electrical devices.
  • Sets up, maintains, calibrates, cleans, and tests sterility of medical laboratory equipment.
  • Prepares standard volumetric solutions or reagents to be combined with samples, following standardized formulas or experimental procedures.
  • Collects blood or tissue samples from patients, observing principles of asepsis to obtain blood sample.
  • Supervises or instructs other technicians or laboratory assistants.
  • Conducts blood tests for transfusion purposes and performs blood counts.
  • Inoculates fertilized eggs, broths, or other bacteriological media with organisms.
  • Obtains specimens, cultivating, isolating, and identifying microorganisms for analysis.
  • Examines cells stained with dye to locate abnormalities.

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Exposed to disease and infections more than once a month through work such as patient care, laboratory work, and sanitation control
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Exposed to conditions such as high voltage electricity, combustibles, explosives, and chemicals more than once a month
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Sound and noise levels are loud and distracting
  • Work in this occupation involves making repetitive motions more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves sitting more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves standing more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Identifying color and seeing differences in color, including shades and brightness
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Rotating shift work
  • Weekend work

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Certified Clinical Laboratory Technician
  • Clinical Laboratory Scientist — Performs lab tests that doctors use to diagnose and address patients' health issues.
  • Clinical Laboratory Technician (Clinical Lab Technician)
  • Laboratory Assistant (Lab Assistant)
  • Laboratory Supervisor
  • Laboratory Technician
  • Medical Laboratory Technician (MLT)
  • Medical Laboratory Technicians (Medical Lab Technician)
  • Medical Technician