Medical Laboratory Technologist
Medical Laboratory Technologists provide medical laboratory data used in the treatment and diagnosis of surgical and medical conditions in detachments and clinics, as well as in combat and operational units.
They must perform their duties according to established protocols, safety guidelines and existing legislation at all times. Their duties include:
- Collecting and preparing biological specimens for analysis
- Performing routine and specialized analyses
- Validating test results
- Perform analytical techniques on specimens that originate from a variety of sources
- Practice and promote the principles of quality and resource management
Medical Laboratory Technologists work in a variety of medical facilities and temporary labs while deployed in peacekeeping missions and humanitarian missions around the world. They may work in shifts. They are posted to bases in Canada, are deployed on missions around the world or on ships at sea.
Pay and career development
The starting salary for a fully trained Medical Laboratory Technologist is $49,400 per year; however, depending on previous experience and training the starting salary may be higher. Medical Laboratory Technologists who demonstrate the required ability, dedication and potential are selected for opportunities for career progression, promotion and advanced training.
Related civilian occupations
- Medical Laboratory Technologist and Pathologist Assistant
- Biochemistry Technologist
- Histology Technologist
- Microbiology Technologist
Basic military qualification
The first stage of training is the Basic Military Qualification course, or Basic Training, held at the Canadian Forces Leadership and Recruit School in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec. This training provides the basic core skills and knowledge common to all trades. A goal of this course is to ensure that all recruits maintain the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) physical fitness standard; as a result, the training is physically demanding.
Basic occupational qualification training
Medical Laboratory Technologists are posted to a medical unit in Canada to complete a one-year preceptor program under the supervision of senior staff. This training provides the core knowledge required to practise as a Medical Laboratory Technologist in a military setting.
Medical Laboratory Technologists may be offered the opportunity to develop specialized skills through formal courses and on-the-job training, including:
- Technical Administration
- Leadership and Management
As they progress in their career, Medical Laboratory Technologists who demonstrate the required ability and potential will be offered advanced training.
The minimum required education to apply for this position is you must be unconditionally accepted or currently enrolled as a full-time student in an academic program at a post-secondary institution selected by the CAF under the Non-Commissioned Member Subsidized Training and Education Plan (NCM-STEP) program.
If you already have a college diploma in Medical Laboratory Technology, certification from the Canadian Society for Medical Laboratory Science (CSMLS) and have unrestricted licence or registration to practise (active status) or letter of good standing from a provincial/territorial regulatory authority. If you graduated more than 12 months ago, six months full or part-time clinical medical laboratory experience gained in the last two years is required. If you graduated within the last 12 months no experience is required.
Non-commissioned Member Subsidized Education Program
Because this position requires specialty training, the Forces will pay successful recruits to attend the diploma program at an approved Canadian college. NCM SEP students attend basic training and on-the-job training during the summer months. They receive full-time salary including medical and dental care, as well as vacation time with full-pay in exchange for working with the Forces for a period of time. If you choose to apply to this program, you must apply both to the Forces and the appropriate college. For more information, see Paid education.
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