The Histotechnologist is responsible for processing all specimens received in the Histology laboratory under minimal supervision. This position requires independent judgment in selection of methodologies utilized in processing specimens and in solving non-routine problems. Histotechnologists contribute to the overall efficiency of the laboratory and Dermatopathology practice in a cost effective manner by performing a variety of tasks, consisting primarily of preparing and processing all Dermatopathology specimens in preparation for Dermatopathologist review and diagnosis. The Histotechnologist receives all histology specimens and processes them using various methodologies, complex machinery and staining systems. The Histotechnologist then prepares the slides for Dermatopathology review by cutting prepared blocks of tissue utilizing complex machinery. Histotechnologists are responsible for appropriately staining the slides with both routine and special stains. Throughout this process, the Histotechnologist is responsible for labeling, entering and tracking the progress of the specimen until it reaches the Dermatopathologist for review. This is extremely important in overall patient care. Inappropriate processing, lost specimens or incorrectly labeled specimens can result in incorrect or unavailable diagnoses, which can cause repeat procedures or life threatening treatment choices. The Histotechnologist must be familiar with many laboratory policies and procedures. The position also assists in maintenance of the histology area by maintaining inventory and supplies, cleaning and organizing work stations, disposing of biological waste, and adhering to all compliance and operational procedures.
Examples of Work Performed
Determines appropriate handling and processing for specimens, and priorities on requested procedures.
Utilizes appropriate equipment with precision for all histological protocols.
Performs computer data entry, recall, and labeling on complex pathology network.
Performs routine preventative maintenance, cleaning, and minor adjustments on all lab equipment.
Prepares and examine solutions for contamination, impurities, or instability.
Follows procedures on all lab tests.
Examines microscopically all stained slides and controls to determine accuracy of the last test and make modifications to the procedures as needed.
Retrieves and stores specimens properly for long term storage.
Assists in maintaining accreditation standards, to include all check sheets and quality control information sheets.
Performs all procedures in a timely manner.
Performs other duties as assigned.
Answers laboratory phone properly and take information correctly.
Assists in the ordering of laboratory supplies to maintain proper inventory.
Knowledgeable of all lab procedures and specimen submission requirements.
Understands and uses proper safety practices.
Working knowledge of all Histology Laboratory Assistant duties.
Trains lab assistants and mentors them into becoming histologists.
Coordinates resolution of laboratory issues.
Responsible for monitoring supply inventory levels within lab and coordinate supply ordering.
Provides input to Manager regarding laboratory personnel quality and quantity of output.
Helps maintain procedure manuals and filling out CAP required documents.
Other duties as assigned
The Histotechnologist must be able to make decisions regarding the processing of specimens, including assessing the quality of slides and stains for Pathologist review.
The Histotechnologist may have to make processing decisions in the course of a power outage or mechanical breakdown of equipment. This position must also make decisions about who and when to call in the event of mechanical malfunction or maintenance. Must also be able to troubleshoot processing irregularities.
The Histotechnologist must be aware of processing requirements and if specimens are unable to be processed in a timely manner, they must make the supervisor aware to advise the affected clinicians.
Some other examples of problem solving: The Histotechnologist must be able to recognize discrepant information as it applies to specimen receipt and decide on a course of action. This includes inspecting all submitting paperwork and specimen labels to ensure they are correct and congruent. The Histotechnologist must be aware of processing requirements and, if specimens are unable to be processed in a timely manner, the Histotechnologist must make the supervisor aware to advise the affected clinician. The Histotechnologist must follow appropriate protocol after a chemical spill.
Results of Actions
The Histotechnologist provides direct patient care support and positive actions result in correct and timely information to the attending clinic physician for patient treatment.
Errors are potentially devastating to the patient as a lost of specimen, mix up of specimens, incorrect specimen sampling or any number of other errors may result in inability to provide diagnostic information for patients or an inaccurate diagnosis. In some case this may be life threatening. Injury could also occur to the individual and/or others working in the histology due to negligence of protocol.
Internal/external communications are frequent among coworkers, and various Dermatopathology staff (clinicians, transcriptionist, etc.). Specimens are received from internal and external sources, so both types of communication occur often. The purpose is to discuss policies, procedures, problems, upgrades, etc… with internal staff members. External communication is mainly for additional information needed for a specimen, or problems with the specimen.
The Histology environment is potentially hazardous and precautions must be taken while in the lab. Great attention to detail is needed as specimens arrive constantly and cannot be mixed up, misplaced, or un-necessarily delayed. Use of sharp instruments is constant and various chemical solutions are used. Gloves must be worn at all times, and frequent hand washing is mandatory as biohazardous materials may be present. There is some lifting of boxes, large specimens, and large containers containing formalin.
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
Thorough knowledge of routine histological activities such as receiving, preparing, processing surgical specimens. * Knowledge and use of laboratory equipment. * Excellent math and analytical skills. * Basic knowledge and understanding of MS Word and Excel and data entry skills. * Demonstrated ability to organize workload, file correctly by alphabetical and numerical order, to pay attention to details, and * Understanding of basic medical terminology * Ability to listen and follow precise protocols and to follow precisely written procedural instructions. * Familiarity and understanding of basic cutaneous anatomy and physiology. * Demonstrated proficiency in teaching, communicating and working well with others. * Experience working within an educational medical environment.
Additional Salary Information: Salary commensurate with qualifications and experience.
Internal Number: 20180404
About Colorado Dermatology Institute
Colorado Dermatology Institute's (CDI) mission is to help you become comfortable in your skin while providing you with the most up-to-date and comprehensive dermatologic care possible. We do this by offering comprehensive treatments and protocols for general dermatology issues, skin cancer to include Mohs Micrographic Surgery, and cosmetic dermatology. In addition, we are actively involved in medical research to help develop the next generation of treatments and we have the first Dermatology Residency program in Southern Colorado to train the next generation of Dermatologists. In all that we do, we strive to be the premier provider of the full range of Dermatology services and to exceed your expectations each and every visit. Our intention is to create a comfortable, “green,” and therapeutic environment focused on encouraging health. It is our job to actively educate our patients on their diagnosis, discuss treatment options, and explain medication usage so that they can become an active participant in your medical care.
CDI also offers expert general and surgical dermatologic care (to include our own pathology lab), from the best eczema treatment to MOHS surgery recovery, th...e professionally trained staff at the Colorado Dermatology Institute is pleased to offer cosmetic services as well.