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Nova Scotia launches new training program for medical laboratory technologists


Halifax, NS December 3, 2003 A new class of 25 health professionals from across Nova Scotia will soon begin training to become certified medical laboratory technologists (MLTs). The new class is part of a government program that also includes bursaries for the students.

The program will pay the tuition of those MLT students who sign a return in service agreement, committing them to work in the Nova Scotia health-care system for two years following their graduation.

“We recognize the need for health professionals in the province, and these students have a bright future ahead of them,” says Rodney MacDonald, health promotion minister. “Our bursary program is aimed at having 25 trained MLTs coming back to work in our hospitals and contribute to our health-care system.”

The MLT program begins in January 2004. Prior to graduation, students will complete a 16-week clinical placement at a hospital in Nova Scotia. The Department of Health and NSCC are working with the clinical lab managers of all Nova Scotia hospitals in each district health authority to arrange student placement opportunities. The student MLTs will learn to perform laboratory investigations relating to the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease. They work primarily with samples of tissue, blood and other body fluids.

“This is a good step for me in my education and career," says Cindy Greenwell of Halifax, a licensed practical nurse and medical assistant in the Army Reserve. "The program will be challenging, but I look forward to learning and training so that I’ll be well-equipped to handle the key role MLTs play in health-care delivery.”