Certification of Histotechnologists
Become a Histotechnologist
Some states do license clinical laboratory workers. In most states, certification is a voluntary process. National board certification is a testament to your skill and is available through the American Society for Clinical Pathology. Baccalaureate or post-baccalaureate education in an accredited histology program is a prerequisite for taking the technologist level certification exam. The exam is computer-adaptive and can be scheduled at your convenience. You can find study tools on the NSH site. This certification is good for three years. In order to renew it, you will need to earn 36 points of continuing competency. Fortunately, there are a number of agencies that have been approved to offer continuing competency classes and activities.
Some histotechnologists pursue an additional qualification in immunohistochemistry through the ASCP after they have spent some time out in the field. In order to pursue this credential, you will need to have six months related experience, performing a range of procedures related to immunofluorescence or immonochemical histotechnology. Some employers do specify this credential, so if you get a chance to get some work experience in this area, you may well to take advantage of it!
The National Society for Histotechnology is an excellent source for professional development, offering symposiums and forums as well as teleconferences and other web resources. Your own state Histology Society representative is a good source of current information.
A few states do mandate licensure. Remember that mandates for licensing are subject to change and that there has been a recent trend in many health professions toward increased regulation. New York is among the states that has seen recent legislation impacting medical laboratory workers. The ASCP supports licensing and posts updates about legislative successes and failures.