Qualified Lab Pros in High Demand

April 7, 2011



Mercy is offering a new scholarship to incentivize people to go into laboratory technology careers. Designated by U.S. News & World Report as one of the best healthcare careers in 2011, lab professionals are in high demand.

Laboratory professionals are skilled in clinical chemistry, hematology, immunology, immunohematology, microbiology, and molecular biology and work as detectives to uncover cancer, heart attacks, diabetes, viruses and bacteria, as well as other types of health conditions. They provide information from lab analyses to physicians and assist in patient diagnosis and treatment, as well as monitoring and prevention of diseases.

“The efforts of laboratory professionals often go unnoticed,” says Kelley Phillips, Mercy Clinic - Nixa laboratory supervisor. Positions in this field are empty because of a lack of awareness. This profession is expected to continue to grow.

Those seeking to become laboratory professionals have several educational options in the Ozarks. OTC offers a two-year program where students attend general classes for one year and spend their second year doing clinical rotations to obtain an associate’s degree, medical laboratory technician. Drury, Evangel, and Missouri State University students obtain medical technologist certification through completion of a four-year Bachelor of Science Degree, which includes a year of internship at an approved School of Medical Technology. Mercy Hospital Joplin's School of Medical Technology and Cox School of Medical Technology are affiliated with the local Universities.

A new scholarship is being offered for those in pursuit of a Laboratory Professionals degree. The deadline to apply for the scholarship is April 30, and the scholarship announcement will be made in June. The Mercy Foundation for Community Health Sunshine Run will help fund the scholarship program by allowing participants to elect to have a portion of their registration fee benefit the lab scholarship program.

Click here for the Scholarship Application.

Mercy clinic and hospital laboratories are celebrating national Laboratory Professionals Week, April 24-30, to help educate the public about the important role lab professionals play as a part of a health care team. Individuals interested in learning more about laboratory professionals are invited to stop by the Smith Glynn Callaway lobby April 27 to visit with representatives from OTC and Mercy Hospital Joplin's School of Medical Technologyfor information about the training needed to enter the field.

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