ASCP certification is the recognition by the American Society for Clinical Pathology Board of Certification that an individual has met certain established requirements for laboratory professionals. The ASCP Board of Certification is an independent certification agency that develops relevant standards and procedures to assure the competence of medical laboratory personnel.
The ASCP BOC acknowledges the importance of impartiality in conducting certification and qualification activities. It manages conflict of interest and ensures objectivity by representative membership on its Board of Governors from other associations and societies.
Certifications and qualification are offered in a number of disciplines and technical areas. Individuals who sit for either a certification are required to meet certain academic and clinical requirements, and achieve a predetermined acceptable performance or competence level. Certification examinations are of fixed-length and time, are criterion referenced and use computer adaptive testing.
The disciplines and technical areas covered by ASCP certification include:
- Technician certifications of histotechnician and phlebotomy, donor phlebotomy and medical laboratory technician
- Technologist certifications of medical laboratory scientist, cytotechnologist, histotechnologist, and technologist in blood banking, chemistry, cytogenetics, hematology, microbiology and molecular biology
- Specialist certification in blood banking, chemistry, cytotechnology, hematology, and microbiology, and pathologist assistant
- Diplomate in laboratory management
ASCP certification is time-limited for three years. To remain valid, practitioners must demonstrate their competence by completion of documented educational activities.
ASCP certification is accepted by all U.S. states and territories and the cities of Abu Dhabi and Dubai for licensure purposes, provided the individual meets all other licensure requirements.
The BOC offers certification study guides, content outlines, and suggested reading lists as resources for taking each certification examination. Online practice tests are also available as a study aid for many of the BOC examinations.
ASCP’s 2013 Wage Survey of U.S. Clinical Laboratories found that certified laboratory professionals earn more than their non-certified counterparts.
WHILE THERE’S BEEN PLENTY of publicity about the growing shortage of medical technologists (MT) and medical laboratory technicians (MLT), less attention has been paid to the factors which brought about this situation.
For example, a careful study of ASCP (American Society of Clinical Pathologists) data going back to the 1950s reveals some interesting facts. There was