People skills need constant updates to keep up with healthcare transformation now that the field has been accelerated with technologically infused changes. Innovation, research, and education are key areas that need to be updated on a regular basis through training, especially in lab settings, according to Dr. Nasir Pervez, Director of Thumbay Labs, Ajman.
However, many medical laboratory science programmes are currently dealing with numerous challenges that may negatively impact the quality of education and competency of graduates. The types and scales of those challenges may vary from country to country, or from region to region.
In the healthcare system, lab professionals act as an investigating liaison between patients and the hospital and therefore the future of healthcare system depends on the medical training of these professionals.
“Medical technologies used in the diagnostic industry are tools and like any other tools, they will perform best when operators know how to use them properly,” said Dr. Pervez. “It is therefore essential that operators get the complete and thorough training they need before making use of equipment,” he added.
Certified training dispenses key knowledge and addresses how the practice needs to grow and provides methods to up-skill the talent to cater to evolving needs. One way to ensure high standards of medical laboratory science programmes is through the accreditation of programmes through national and international professional organisations.
“Well-trained and certified lab professionals are an invaluable resource to the ever-evolving and expanding healthcare ecosystem,” Dr. Pervez said.
As healthcare becomes more technology-driven, the importance of initial training has become more important in the field of diagnostics. “Lab professionals support the doctors as well as the healthcare system in a way that the root of their purpose extends throughout the treatment process,” he added.
He added, “As their work comprises precise detail that needs to be carefully executed at the time of practice, and they are subject to the same regulations and guidelines as any healthcare entity, their training is crucial. It also helps them in improving their day-to-day productivity, meet the guidelines of regulations, and keep up with the constant advances in cutting-edge technology demanded by medical procedures.”
Some of the challenges facing the industry, especially from the perspective of human resource availability, is a shortage of qualified and skilled medical lab scientists in many countries. Reasons include but are not limited to — number of accredited programmes, decreased general interest in becoming a medical laboratory scientist due to poor working conditions or low salaries, and increasing governmental regulations.
These challenges can be resolved by healthcare leaders by addressing specific issues and offering sustainable solutions.