So What Do Clinical Laboratory Scientists Do?
Clinical laboratory scientists are responsible for determining the possible causes of diseases as well as what cures will be appropriate. They do this by utilizing specialized laboratory equipment and procedures available to them. They need the right chemicals, reagents, and tools in order to accurately study body tissues and fluids.
As a degree, clinical laboratory science is a relatively versatile one, as it covers plenty of areas of specialization as well as career opportunities. Needless to say, the ability of an expert to evaluate tissue and blood samples and the insight and accuracy in analyzing and diagnosing clinical findings are essential in treating injuries and curing illnesses.
In order to get a job in this field, there are various trainings that come with a certificate or associate’s degree that also provide options to students with regards to specialization. These specialty areas are very important for any clinical lab scientist as they can determine later on what specific career they will take on in the future.
There are several areas of specialization that a student of clinical laboratory science may opt for. These include:
- Urinalysis – the analysis of urine on the microscopic, chemical, and physical level.
- Microbiology – identifying and analyzing different types of viruses and bacteria as well as how their properties may affect a certain disease
- Serology/Immunology – the study of immune responses in relation to diseases
- Immunohematology – the analysis of antibodies and antigens related to the components of blood transfusion
- Chemistry – the study of chemical components of bodily fluids
- Bacteriology – the analysis of bacteria
- Hematology – the study of blood producing organs and blood, plus the analysis of plasma proteins and blood cells for indications of any disease
A clinical laboratory scientist will have a great background in the basic principles of science. In particular, basic biology, organic chemistry, and general chemistry are the ones used by a clinical lab scientist to make accurate investigations and analyses to how the human body works. They perform the tests using lab equipment, whose results and findings are analyzed by them as well.
Aside from becoming scientists working in laboratories alone, there are other positions that can be pursued by a clinical laboratory science graduate. They may earn certifications and undergo training to work as a laboratory administrator, teacher in universities, as well as a researcher. All these positions are available to anyone, but would greatly depend on the degree program or diploma attained by a practitioner.