Medical Technician Certification—How to Get One?
In the healthcare industry, medical technicians are one of the highest paid professions. Moreover, medical technicians can work in different settings and facilities. They can work in hospitals, clinics, laboratories, and nursing homes, among others. However, before a person becomes a medical technician, he needs to obtain first a medical tech certification.
A medical tech certification is only given to individuals who had only obtained and completed a medical technician training and had passed the exams provided for aspiring medical technicians. Furthermore, before being able to obtain a medical tech certification, a person needs to undergo first a medical technician training.
Individuals who wanted to undergo a medical technician training must present a high school diploma or it equivalent together with some aptitude tests in sciences. Contact the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS) to ensure that the school and colleges enrolled into is accredited to offer programs on medical technician.
A medical technician training usually lasts for 2 years. Yet, there are some specialties that require a few years more, and some entails just less than 2 years. The subjects that might be included in the curriculum for the medical technician training are as follows: medical terminology, medical laboratory skills, medical clinical skills, basic life support, intravenous therapy, pathology, and human growth and development.
After rigorous lectures in the training, the aspiring medical techs are required to undergo the clinical internship. With this, they can apply what they learn inside the classroom. They will know how it feels to become a medical tech for real. The internships can be done in affiliated hospital and clinics.
After completion of the training, the future medical techs will have to pass the examination for medical technicians provided by every state. They can also obtain medical tech certification from the American Medical Technologists (AMT). The AMT will contact the applicants for their examination date.
Moreover, the applicants can request study guides from AMT for their examination. These guides will help them in successfully passing the exam. When they are able to pass the exam, they can now be given a medical tech certification. This medical tech certification is a key to finding a job perfectly if not that quickly.
There are lots of career options for a medical technician, which are also known as clinical laboratory technicians. The options differ with the tasks and specializations. The choices are as follows: Histotechnician, Surgical technician, Medication technician, Dialysis technician, Radiology technician, Medical lab technician, and Ultrasound technician. The career options mentioned typically work under and function under the supervision of laboratory managers, medical technologists, nurses, and or physicians.
Possessing a medical tech certification gives any individual an edge over other applicants because the medical tech certification is a proof that they know their job, they are capable of doing the tasks, and of course, they are certified. Also, through the medical tech certification, medical technicians can demand higher salaries from their employers. Nevertheless, being a medical technician is not just about high salaries, just like any other healthcare profession, it needs to have heart for others.
Getting Your Medical Tech Certification As A Medical Technologist
What is a medical technologist?
A medical technologist is a laboratory professional that is crucial to diagnosing and preventing diseases. Medical technologists perform complex analyses in the lab. According to the certification organization, American Medical Technologists, these analyses can include:
- Examining blood and other bodily fluids with a microscope
- Making body fluid cultures and tissue samples to look for bacteria, fungi, parasites, and other microorganisms
- Analyzing samples for chemicals and determining concentrations of compounds like blood glucose
- Cross-matching blood samples for transfusions
- Evaluating test results, developing procedures, and monitoring the accuracy of tests
- Supervising others in the laboratory
Medical technology is an important field that advances medical science.
What are the requirements for getting your medical tech certification?
There are a few main requirements for getting your medical tech certification. Certification requires a bachelor’s degree in a science, such as biology or chemistry, or Medical Technology. This means taking a variety of science and math-related courses, such as microbiology, chemistry, statistics, and clinical lab classes. Many medical techs also have to do internships in hospitals.
A bachelor’s degree is the minimum requirement to become a medical technologist. However, many states and employers prefer that medical technologists be officially licensed and certified. The requirements for licensure vary from state to state and often involves passing an exam. For example, in New York, candidates must pass the American Society for Clinical Pathology Board for Registry’s examination for Medical Technologist with at least a score of 75. Candidates need to contact their states’ boards of health or boards of occupational licensing to see whether they need to take a licensing exam.
Once the bachelor’s degree is received and/or the exam is passed, medical technologists should look into becoming certified by the American Medical Technologists, since many employers prefer this. This involves applying to the association and taking another exam. If the candidate passes, they receive a certificate and a membership card from the American Medical Technologists. This is the final step that can be taken in getting your medical tech certification.
What other skills are useful to become a medical technologist?
Sometimes, it isn’t enough just to have a degree or to have a medical tech certification. Employers seek certain skills that will ensure that the medical technologist will do a good job in their lab. For example, medical technologists need to demonstrate good analytical judgment and problem-solving skills, and the ability to work well in a stressful environment. Medical technologists need to be detail-oriented when working with microscopic samples and organisms, and they also need computer skills to be able to work with all of the highly advanced lab equipment.
Medical technologists who prove they have what it takes can advance in their positions. They may become lab supervisors or chief technologists, or they may be hired to work in product development and marketing by companies that make diagnostic kits and lab equipment. It is helpful to be officially certified and to have a graduate degree in medical technology to advance in the field.