Job Market & Salary
Although Medical Laboratory technicians are not found on popular TV shows, MLTs work behind the scenes using microscopes to identify blood cells and bacteria. They perform tests to match blood for transfusions, monitor the treatment of patients with various diseases, and perform many other tasks using sophisticated laboratory equipment. The job market for Medical Laboratory technicians is expected to remain strong. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment growth of 14.7% between 2010 and 2020. Current rating: Best Healthcare Jobs is #17; and the 100 Best Jobs is #39.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (released in May 2011), the national annual median salary for Medical Laboratory Technicians is $36,950, based on geographic location. Currently there is a shortage in many parts of the country, ensuring employment and higher salaries for graduates. With the current shortage of laboratory practitioners, wages are expected to rise higher than average. Further information can be found on the Bureau of Labor Statistics website.
Starting salaries in the Oklahoma City area range from $34,320 to $41,600 annually (not including weekend/shift differentials and sign-on bonuses).
The graduate of an accredited Medical Laboratory Technology Program is qualified to perform routine laboratory tests in a variety of settings: physician's office, clinic, hospital laboratory, research facility. The Medical Laboratory Technician (MLT) provides vital information to physicians regarding the health status of patients: for well-person exams; to diagnose disease; to monitor treatment. For more in-depth information on Medical Laboratory Technicians see the American Society of Clinical Pathologists Board of Certification (ASCP.org) and American Society for Medical Laboratory Science (ASCLS.org).