Pathology Assistant Requirements

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    • Pathologist's assistants assist in postmortems and surgical procedures.Medical instruments image by Keith Frith from

      Pathology assistants are usually employed in surgical pathology or autopsy pathology. Surgical pathologists obtain essential clinical information from patients and assist in a range of procedures including analyzing specimens for bacterial and viral information. Autopsy pathologists help conduct post-mortem examinations on human bodies. Duties include obtaining legal authorization for autopsies and taking photographs. Pathology assistants work in hospitals, research laboratories, funeral homes and morgues, as stated on the Schools In The USA website. As of 2010, the average salary for a pathology assistant was is $71,000, according to Indeed.

    Personal Skills

    Preliminary Education

    • A diploma in biological science provides eligibility for certain procedures.A High-School Graduate image by TMLP from

      There are no specific undergraduate diploma course routes for prospective pathology assistants. Candidates require a baccalaureate diploma in anthropology, biological science or another relevant field to be eligible to apply for certification as a pathology assistant. These courses provide students the relevant training and experience to carry out limited procedures with pathologists in hospitals, health care centers and physician's practices. To practice as a pathology assistant without restrictions, candidates go on to gain certification with the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS).

    Further Education

    • The master's program teaches students how to analyze specimen slides.microscope kit image by PHOTOFLY from

      Once candidates have completed the baccalaureate program, they are required to complete a program accredited by the NAACLS, says Education-Portal. Most of these programs are offered at the master's level and provide candidates with practical experience in specimen photography and utilizing microscope slides for specimen analysis. Students also learn about keeping confidential patient records and how to use and maintain laboratory equipment. Some students who undertake the master's program emerge from professional backgrounds as lab technicians or clinical assistants. This will provide them with knowledge of the fields of anatomy and physiology, and in the identification and treatment of a range of diseases.


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