Medical Laboratory Assistant

If you’re organized, able to multi-task, and interested in working in a laboratory or hospital setting, consider a career as a Medical Laboratory Assistant.

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    Delivery Method

    Delivery Method: In-Class and Combined Delivery (only Vancouver Island)

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    Duration: 30 weeks, including a 4-week practicum

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    Starts: Surrey: Three times per year (May, July and October)
    Vancouver Island: Once per year (April)

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    Credential: Diploma

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    Wages: Up to $24.77/hour

If you’re organized, able to multi-task, and interested in working in a laboratory or hospital setting, consider a career as a Medical Laboratory Assistant. Medical Laboratory Assistants perform the practical components of sample analysis. They are integral members of the health care team who share knowledge, promote learning, and collaborate with other professionals in providing effective patient care.

A medical laboratory assistant can perform a wide variety of tasks, depending upon the needs of the institute that is doing the testing. Sample duties include performing phlebotomy (collecting blood), electrocardiograms (ECGs), basic preanalytical procedures and interacting directly with patients.

Stenberg College works very closely with labs and community hospitals and strives at all times to maintain our reputation for providing relevant training and producing highly skilled graduates who are rapidly employed.

Program Delivery: Stenberg College offers a classroom-based Program in Surrey, BC and in collaboration with Life Labs on Vancouver Island, Stenberg College is offering an online-based Program (Vancouver Island only) with Practicum placements at the Life Labs in: Victoria (and surrounding areas), Nanaimo, Duncan and Courtenay.

Stenberg College is accredited by the BC government’s Ministry of Advanced Education through the Private Training Institutions Branch (PTIB).

PTIB is responsible for setting standards of quality and ensuring consumer protection. Stenberg College has also received the BC government’s Education Quality Assurance (EQA) designation which is BC’s brand or “seal” of quality post-secondary education for both public and private institutions.

All of our programs are developed in collaboration with industry to meet their needs which is why our graduates are so successful.

Over 92% of our graduates are employed in their field of study within 6 months of graduation.

As a Medical Laboratory Assistant, you’ll find opportunities for employment in hospitals, communities and private laboratories, public health laboratories, private health insurance companies and research institutions.

Based on employment statistics gathered by Stenberg College, the wage range of Medical Laboratory Assistants is from $20.60 – $24.77 per hour depending on experience and location.

The related national occupation classification number for Medical Laboratory Assistants is 321.

  • Completion of Grade 12 or equivalent
  • Passing Stenberg College entrance examination.
  • Passing Stenberg College entrance interview.
  • Two years of customer service experience with the same employer or a minimum of 6 months of customer service experience with a reference letter from an employer
  • Successful completion of a short written essay
  • Passing Verbal Test of English if English is a Second Language
  • Minimum typing speed of 40 words per minute
  • Completion of a Criminal Record Consent Form under the Criminal Record Review Act

Prior to Program Admission, Program Advisors will outline practice education requirements for the program. Upon enrollment, you will be informed of next steps and timelines. Non-compliance could result in program dismissal. Requirements for practice education placements include:

  • Acceptable Criminal Record Search under the Criminal Record Review Act
  • Proof of Immunity Status as required by industry
  • Acceptable Medical Examination Form completed by a physician

NB: Additional criteria may be required to fulfill industry guidelines; you will be informed in advance of any requirements that need to be fulfilled for placements.

Please click the course title below to scroll to the course description:

Orientation and Student Success Skills

This course will provide a comprehensive orientation to Stenberg College and the program you have enrolled in. As with all new things, there will be some challenges and excitement; this course will explore transitioning as a college student, review learning styles, enhance critical thinking, and familiarize you with the resources available for your use. This course covers student success skills where you’ll learn effective study habits (specially to improving both reading and writing skills) based on your own personal learning style. Life skills exercises are also integral to the course, teaching communication, accountability, teamwork, self-awareness, and building an understanding of the impact you have on others.

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Keyboarding & Computer Fundamentals

This course is designed to provide you with a detailed introduction to correct typing technique and the computer skills required to work in a fast-paced environment. Throughout the course, you will use a simulated program to improve proficiency with the Internet, Windows environment, and Microsoft Office (Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint).
You will also focus on the development and maintenance of accurate keyboarding skills. You are encouraged to practice your keyboarding using the Typing Ace online program outside of your regular classroom hours.

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Medical Terminology

This intensive, fast paced course is an introduction to the world of medical terminology and is designed to provide the foundation for all subsequent courses. You’ll become familiar with various medical word parts, build fluency in the pronunciation and spelling of these parts and learn to build and break down medical terms to determine meaning. Understanding the language of medicine is essential for all healthcare professionals to be able to function effectively and safely in a health care environment. You will also gain a general introduction to each of the body systems, developing a foundation in body systems terminology which will be built upon in subsequent program coursework.

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Anatomy & Physiology/Pathology Fundamentals

Building upon the foundations developed in Medical Terminology / Intro to Anatomy & Physiology, this course will develop your understanding of anatomy and physiology with emphasis on those body systems relevant to medical laboratory assistant practice. You will also learn about diseases and common tests related to the body systems.

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Medical Laboratory Communications

This module discusses the professional behaviour and uses specific examples that pertain to the MLA. It also describes the health care organization and the duties of the team members in the various departments. You will become accustomed with the role of the MLA in providing professional patient/customer service learning how to use outstanding interpersonal skills. This module will teach the cardiovascular system, the components of the blood, and the commonly used veins in phlebotomy. Laboratory structure and the commonly performed tests in each department will be discussed. Quality assurance and improvement as applied to the MLA will be briefly discussed along with the ethical, legal, and regulatory issues. You will learn basic laboratory terminology and measurements.

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Medical Laboratory Procedures

In this course you will learn about diagnostic laboratory tests, documentation and delivery methods of specimens, safety supplies, phlebotomy equipment, and venipuncture procedures. This course will highlight all aspects of phlebotomy including:

  • Venipuncture procedures and working with special populations
  • Blood collection equipment
  • Documentation, specimen handling, and transportation
  • Computerization in health care
  • Pre-analytical complications in blood collection
  • Point-of-care testing
  • Urinalysis, body fluids, and other specimens for laboratory evaluation
  • Forensic toxicology, workplace testing, sports medicine, and related areas
  • Specimen handling and processing

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Pre- and Post-Analytical Procedures and Microbiology

This course will address pre and post analytical procedures and processing and referral procedures required for the medical laboratory assistant to function proficiently in the front end of a medical laboratory environment. Topics covered include: labelling, requisitions, phone protocol, quality control management, packaging, inventory control, ordering of supplies as well as healthcare information systems. You will also become competent in the specific pre-analytical procedures for microbiology set-up.

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Cardiac Procedures

You will review the anatomy of the heart and be introduced to the electrical conductive system of the heart. You will learn procedures that will enable you to use, maintain, and analyze electrocardiogram tracings of 12/15 lead electrocardiograms. Emphasis will be put on the theory and practice of correct application and activation. Troubleshooting will also be addressed. You will also learn about ambulatory ECG monitoring (holter) and be able to identify indications to rule out arrhythmias and identify critical values. Focus will be placed on holter hook-up procedures and care for equipment.

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Career Search Strategies

You will learn to network effectively (online and in person), to search and apply for jobs and to prepare targeted resumes and cover letters. You are also provided with coaching and individualized instructor feedback on their resume, cover letter, and interview skills.

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Consolidated Practice Experience

You will perform procedures such as phlebotomy, electrocardiography, and specimen collection skills in a real laboratory setting.

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Please click the course title below to scroll to the course description.

Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System

WHMIS provides information about materials in the workplace that can be hazardous, such as cleaning agents, compressed gases and flammable materials. Becoming WHMIS certified will demonstrate the ability to identify hazardous materials and handle them properly.

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Personal & Professional Development Skills Certificate

The Personal and Professional Development (PPD) Skills Certificate is a self-directed, online certificate that enhances your soft skills. The six PPD workshops cover Professionalism, Quality Service, Feedback, Diverse Teams, Conflict Resolution, and Leadership. Together, these workshops prepare you to effectively approach and resolve real life situations.

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Provincial Violence Prevention Certification

The Provincial Violence Prevention Training Curriculum will teach you to recognize and respond to violent situations and learn about different types of violence and strategies for dealing with the risks in a variety of health care contexts. The Provincial Violence Prevention Curriculum has been developed by a team of experts from Worksafe BC, the Occupational Health & Safety Agency for healthcare in BC, as well as BC health authorities and healthcare unions. This training and certification is offered in collaboration with Fraser Health Authority.

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Fit Testing

This theory course will cover the correct use and care of respirators, respirator limitations, donning and doffing procedures, and proper disposal of respirators in accordance with WorkSafeBC OHS Regulation Section 8.7.3.

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You could be eligible for Employment Insurance funding for education, government student loans, as well as other financing options; Stenberg’s Financial Aid Officer would be happy to provide further assistance.

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