Laboratory professionals are key members of today’s health care team, and quality medical care depends on them. Every day, nurses, physicians, and other medical workers rely on laboratory professionals to perform tests on body fluids and tissue samples, interpret the results and help provide a complete picture of a patient’s health. Without this precise and valuable information, medicine would simply be guesswork.
CentraCare Laboratory Services (CCLS) includes a:
- Team of six pathologists who direct the operations of the laboratory.
- Fully accredited transfusion service department that assures an adequate supply of blood for surgical needs in the St. Cloud area.
- Variety of practices including chemistry, hematology, microbiology, urinalysis, histology, cytology, immunohematology, immunology, and molecular pathology.
Serving the Region
CCLS is comprised of three sites and serves the region with:
- State-of-the art equipment and knowledgeable staff.
- Accurate and timely test results provided to CentraCare Health System and other clients in Central Minnesota.
- Standardized test methods, policies and procedures.
- A common laboratory information system.
At the heart of CCLS is a team of caring, skilled professionals dedicated to the pursuit of excellence. This creates a professional network where staff can work together, serve as resources for one another and engage in system-wide problem solving. Many of our staff participate on hospital and clinic committees and task forces.
Education and Professional Development
Our staff includes skilled professionals that act as consultants and teachers in our laboratory, in our system and for our customers. Our partnerships with regional colleges and universities create opportunities for clinical training internships for many degree and certificate programs including clinical laboratory scientist, clinical laboratory technician, histology technician, medical secretary and phlebotomy. On-the-job training is provided for some positions to individuals with prior medical or related education.
The service provided by CCLS is only as good as our staff. Therefore, we place great importance on empowering employees. Benefits to staff include:
- Comprehensive orientation
- Continuing education
- Tuition reimbursement
- Growth opportunities
Laboratory career opportunities exist in hospital, clinic and private laboratories, as well as research, public health, sales and marketing, consulting, health administration and education.
Lab Careers Information (PDF)
The following careers may be available within CCLS:
Collects blood samples from the patient for specific laboratory testing. To do this, the phlebotomy technician must create an atmosphere of trust and confidence with patients while drawing blood specimens in a skillful, safe and reliable manner. A high school diploma is the minimum requirement. Grade from a phlebotomy or phlebotomy-related program is preferred.
Collects blood samples from the patient and provides additional support in the laboratory. Responsibilities include: specimen handling/processing, performing low complexity testing, culture set-up, data entry, diagnostic coding, patient registration, and other customer service duties. A high school diploma is the minimum requirement. Previous experience, education or training is preferred.
Works closely with the pathologists to transcribe pathology reports to assure accurate and detailed diagnostic information. Other responsibilities include administrative assistant functions, checking billing accuracy and the distribution of laboratory and pathology reports.
Clinical Laboratory Technician
Performs clinical laboratory procedures in chemistry, hematology, microbiology, immunohematology, immunology and other areas of the clinical laboratory. The data is used by a physician to determine the presence and extent of disease and to monitor the patient’s treatment.
Prepares very thin sections of body tissues for microscopic examination. The technician cuts the tissues, mounts them on slides and stains them with special dyes to make the cell details visible under the microscope. The slides help the pathologist and surgeon determine if disease is present and if it has spread — helping direct the best course of treatment for the patient.
Clinical Laboratory Scientist
Performs laboratory tests on blood and other body fluids to help determine the cause of diseases. Because the tests are vital to medical treatment, the clinical laboratory scientist not only must know how to perform these tests with scientific precision and accuracy, but must be well-educated in the scientific principles. They must monitor quality to maintain high performance and also may supervise personnel, conduct research and develop new tests and methodologies.
Examines human cell samples under the microscope to detect early signs of cancer and other diseases. With expert eyes, the cytotechnologist looks for the smallest abnormalities in color, shape and size that can be clues to the presence of disease. The cytotechnologist issues the final report on specimens that contain normal cells. When abnormal cells are present, the cytotechnologist works with a pathologist to determine a final diagnosis.
A medical doctor who examines tissues and is responsible for the accuracy of laboratory tests. Pathologists interpret the results of these examinations and tests — information that is important for the patient’s diagnosis and recovery. The pathologist and the patient’s other doctors consult on which tests to order, test results and appropriate treatments.
For more information about laboratory careers, visit the American Society for Clinical Pathology.
As part of CentraCare Health System we are a team of dedicated health care professionals whose mission is to provide quality service, expert consultation and comprehensive medical laboratory information to Central Minnesota.
CentraCare Laboratory Services
1406 Sixth Avenue North
St. Cloud, MN 56303