Inside the Lab

Ep13: Laboratory Staffing Shortages

February 02, 2021 American Society for Clinical Pathology Season 1 Episode 13
Inside the Lab
Ep13: Laboratory Staffing Shortages
Show Notes

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, approximately 4,900 students graduate from MLS and MLT programs in the U.S. every year. But there are 9,000+ job openings. So, what’s behind the 46% vacancy rate? And what can we do as laboratory professionals to address these significant staffing shortages? 

On this episode of Inside the Lab, our hosts Dr. Dan Milner and Ms. Kelly Swails are joined by Dr. Rodney E. Rohde, PhD, SV, SM, MB(ASCP), FACSc, Professor and Chair for the Clinical Laboratory Science Program in the College of Health Professions at Texas State University, Dr. Brandy D. Gunsolus, DCLS, MLS(ASCP)CM, Administrator of the Immunology and Toxicology Laboratories and Specimen Referral at Augusta University Medical Center, and Ms. Edna Garcia, MPH, Director of Scientific Engagement and Research at ASCP’s Institute for Science, Technology and Policy in Washington, DC, to discuss laboratory staffing shortages—before, during, and after COVID-19. 

Our panelists explore the factors that have contributed to the rise in staffing shortages over the past 30 years, discussing why the laboratory continues to struggle with recruitment and retention despite advancements in automation. Listen in for Dr. Rohde’s, Dr. Gonsolus’, and Ms. Garcia’s insight on advancing the visibility of the lab to strengthen the pipeline and find out what we can do to meet the workforce challenges the laboratory faces moving forward. 

Key Takeaways
· How laboratory staffing has evolved over the past 30 years and factors contributing to the rise in staffing shortages
· The challenges around recruitment and retention in the laboratory revealed in ASCP’s Wage and Vacancy surveys
· What can be done to advance the visibility of the lab and how COVID has helped highlight the profession in the past few months
· Why some labs are laying off lab professionals while others are desperate to hire staff to accommodate coronavirus testing
· The challenge the laboratory faces moving forward in terms of strengthening the pipeline and training administrators 

Connect with ASCP 

ASCP on Facebook
ASCP on Instagram
ASCP on Twitter 

Connect with Dr. Rohde 

Dr. Rohde at Texas State University
Dr. Rohde on Twitter
Dr. Rohde on LinkedIn 

Connect with Dr. Gunsolus 

Augusta University Health
Dr. Gunsolus on Twitter
Dr. Gunsolus on LinkedIn 

Connect with Ms. Garcia 

ASCP Institute for Science, Technology and Public Policy
Ms. Garcia on LinkedIn 

Connect with Dr. Mulder & Dr. Milner 

Ms. Swails on Twitter
Dr. Milner on Twitter 


Inside the Lab in the ASCP Store