Medical Lab Tech Job Outlook/Salary for 2019
March 22, 2019
Medical laboratory technicians collect samples and perform routine laboratory tests and procedures ordered by physicians and other healthcare professionals. Lab techs play an important role in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease, and they’re a vital part of a patient’s medical team. Due to an increased need for skilled laboratory personnel, a qualified travel lab tech often finds themselves in great demand.
Rapidly changing technology requires continued learning, and working in a variety of laboratory settings is a great way to gain new skills and experience. As your lab tech expertise increases, so does your opportunities for higher salaries and career advancements.
Medical lab technicians work in medical laboratories, but those laboratories could be housed in a wide array of environments. From acute-care hospitals and private practices to large, cutting-edge medical facilities and small-town clinics, travel med techs work in all types of settings.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), about 335,700 medical and clinical laboratory technicians and technologists were employed in 2016. While almost half of them worked in state, local and private medical and surgical hospitals, the remaining lab techs and technologists worked in medical and diagnostic labs, physicians’ offices, educational institutions and outpatient care centers.
Travel lab tech jobs are available across the country, but some states employ larger numbers of permanent lab techs than others. In May 2017, California employed 29,690 lab techs, and Texas employed 26,700, which was at least double the amount employed in every other state, except New York, Florida, Pennsylvania and Michigan. Vermont employed the least amount with only 450 lab techs working in the state, followed by Wyoming, where 490 were employed. To ensure gratification in your allied travel career, seek lab tech jobs that match your personal and professional goals.
Phlebotomy is a common requirement for laboratory technicians, but true generalists may find themselves performing tasks in every area of a laboratory. Travel lab tech positions help you gain experience in a variety of settings, and your ability to rotate through all departments significantly enhances your resume.
Consider positions with numerous responsibilities in hematology, urinalysis, chemistry, serology, microbiology, blood banking, coagulation and miscellaneous other areas in the laboratory to provide yourself with well-rounded expertise.
Common contracts and shifts
Travel lab tech contracts commonly run about 13 weeks, but shorter contracts for 9-12 weeks are also available. Some contracts are even shorter, requiring only 1 to 8 weeks in a given position. If you’re looking for something longer term, consider lengthier contracts that run between 14 to 26 weeks.
You may even find allied travel positions for lab techs lasting 27 weeks or longer, and some temporary positions can transition into permanent ones. Work periods for travel lab tech positions include day, evening or night shifts of eight, 10 or 12 hours apiece, but positions in a 24-hour facility may require you to work a combination of shifts.
Medical Lab Tech Travel Salary expectations
Salary rates for medical lab technicians and technologists vary based on the location of the assignment; however, the BLS reported a median wage of $51,770 in May 2017. Of the various work environments, general medical and surgical hospitals paid the highest salaries, followed by medical and diagnostic laboratories and then educational institutions.
Travel lab tech positions often pay higher wages with average hourly rates between $31 and $36. However, facility budgets and seasonality may impact this. Your salary package may also include a combination of taxable and non-taxable earnings and reimbursements.
The ever-growing aging population presents an increased need for diagnostic testing and other laboratory procedures. Combined with an escalating desire among prospective parents for complex prenatal testing, the job outlook for medical lab techs and technologists is extremely optimistic.
The BLS predicts a faster-than-average job growth in the field with a projected growth of 14 percent between 2016 and 2026. Lab techs who complete accredited education programs and earn professional certifications typically have better jobs prospects, but allied travel jobs also make you a highly desirable job candidate.
The diverse knowledge, skills and experience you receive in varied travel lab tech positions help grow your career and opportunities for advancement. Whether you’re seeking short-term or long-term positions, you’ll find flexibility with travel lab jobs you might be currently missing.
Apply for some high-paying Medical Lab Tech jobs from the link below and make your year a success.