Anyone who is interested in working in a career in healthcare that provides vital assistance to physicians and patients alike may wish to consider becoming either a certified medical assistant CMA or a medical lab technician MLT. While both work with physicians and other healthcare staff, professionals in these two roles have very different responsibilities, and for the most part work in different settings; as such, anyone who is deciding between these two career options should fully understand them before making a final decision on which one to pursue. If a CMA specializes in a field like podiatry or chiropractic medicine, this may add to or alter his or her list of responsibilities. Another difference between the two roles involves the organizations responsible for providing certification; certified medical assistants must obtain certification through the American Association of Medical Assistants , whereas those hoping to becoming medical lab technicians may receive certification through the American Society for Clinical Pathology or another certifying body. Beyond the core similarities and differences mentioned above, there are several additional differences between these two career options, including the education required, salary, and other factors. And, in light of this, we have provided a side-by-side table that compares and contrasts these two careers in more detail.
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To inform the pathology and laboratory field of the most recent national wage data. Historically, the results of this biennial survey have served as a basis for additional research on laboratory recruitment, retention, education, marketing, certification, and advocacy. Compared with , results show an overall increase in salaries for most laboratory occupations surveyed except cytogenetic technologists, laboratory information systems personnel, and performance improvement or quality assurance personnel. Geographically, laboratory professionals from urban areas earned more than their rural counterparts. As retirement rates continue to increase, the field needs to intensify its efforts on recruiting the next generation of laboratory personnel.
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While no one can deny the importance of physicians, surgeons, and nurses, there are a number of other healthcare professionals who work behind the scenes, often unnoticed, making significant contributions to healthcare. Not the least of these is the medical laboratory technician, or MLT, who conducts a variety of lab tests to help with the diagnosis, treatment and monitoring of conditions as varied as AIDS, cancer and diabetes. Once medical lab technicians have the skills needed for employment, one of the exciting aspects of their job is the ability to work in a wide variety of environments.
Perform routine medical laboratory tests for the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. May work under the supervision of a medical technologist. Find occupations related to multiple tasks. Hot Technology — a technology requirement frequently included in employer job postings. Find occupations related to multiple detailed work activities.