Laboratory Profession and Training
Until recently only Clinical Laboratory Scientists (CLS) were recognized as testing personnel in California laboratories. Legislation has passed and regulations are pending for a new California category of Medical Laboratory Technicians (MLT) to do testing when supervised by CLS personnel. In addition, regulations Certifying Phlebotomists have been in effect since April 8, 2003. Official recognition of these categories provides a “career ladder” within our laboratories and will help assure quality training of laboratory staff and better service to our patient community.
General information regarding qualifications for training and educational background for all categories of Laboratory Personnel can be obtained from Laboratory Field Services, State Dept. of Health Services. Additional qualifications and entrance requirements for specific training programs should be obtained directly from the school(s) offering training.
Laboratory Brochure Now Available
CAMLT has developed an attractive tri-fold brochure which is now available to members and others for use in explaining the Laboratory profession. This brochure is appropriate for career fairs and other recruitment efforts. The brochure can be downloaded and printed by you or ordered directly from CAMLT at nominal cost. CAMLT members can obtain up to 10 copies per year for only the handling charge. See the downloadable order form below for details.
Clinical Laboratory Scientist (CLS)
Licensure as a CLS in California requires a Bachelor’s degree with required coursework to qualify for a CLS Trainee license and entry into a training internship program. The internship is generally one year and includes practical laboratory training in all specialty areas of a cooperating medical laboratory as well as didactic training. After training the candidate must pass a comprehensive written exam* to obtain a California CLS License. Many schools also qualify their students to sit for one or more of the national certifying exams which are used as a benchmark in states without licensing laws. Once licensed, renewal will require 24 Continuing Education units per two year licensing cycle.
Medical Laboratory Technicians (MLT)
This is a new category of personnel for the clinical laboratories of California but has been in existence in other states for many years. California regulations require specified course work and an Associate of Arts degree. Candidates will also need to pass one of the California recognized National MLT examinations to qualify for a California MLT license. There is a requirement for twelve Continuing Education units per year for license renewal. Licensing is on a two year renewal cycle.
Phlebotomists must be certified at one of three levels as shown below. Final Phlebotomy regulations have been in effect since April 9, 2003. Phlebotomists with experience prior to the enactment of the regulations (April 9, 2003) must have additional training and take an approved exam to become certified under the new regulations. Experience may waive the practical portion of the training (depending on the number of hours of prior employment).
More Phlebotomy information is available from Laboratory Field Services.
Laboratory Field Services (LFS)
The Mission of Laboratory Field Services (LFS) is to ensure quality standards in clinical and public health laboratories and laboratory scientists through licensing, examination, inspection, education, and proficiency testing.
LFS is the primary link between the health of California citizens and quality oriented, accurate and reliable clinical laboratory testing. LFS provides oversight for clinical and public health laboratory operations and for the licensed and certified scientists and other testing personnel who perform testing in clinical laboratories.