Return to Practice Guidelines for Medical Laboratory Technologists

RETURN TO PRACTICE GUIDELINES FOR MLT'S

Developed by the NSCMLT Credentials Committee, approved by NSCMLT Board of Directors. 

This policy pertains to Medical Laboratory Technologists (MLT) who are not currently employed as a Medical Laboratory Technologist in Nova Scotia and wish to obtain a Practicing License. THe policy ensures that there are clear and concise guidelines for education and clinical practicum in place for return to practice MLTs. The theoretical and laboratory practicum are intended to reaquaint MLTs with the knoweldge, values and skills to support MLT practice decisions. The guidelines aim to support professional growth, which is integral to the maintenance of continuing competency.

Definitions

Direct Supervision:  The supervising MLT continually monitors the performance of the person being supervised.  The supervising MLT is always readily accessible on site in case of difficulty or needed intervention.  The supervising MLT will use continuous observation to assess competencies.

Supervisor / Supervising MLT:  a licensed practising member of the NSCMLT.

Temporary License:  issued to an individual for a specified period of time allowing that individual to work as a MLT under direct supervision.  A Temporary License may be issued for a period of up to one year.  

Temporary Restricted License:  issued to an individual for a specified period of time allowing that individual to work as a MLT under direct supervision in a specific discipline.  A MLT working with a Temporary Restricted License must complete the required number of supervised practice hours in each discipline in order to obtain a pratising License.

Practising License:  issued to an individual for the current licensing year which allows the individual to practice without direct supervision in any discipline for which they are qualified.

Approved:  refers to approval by the NSCMLT Credentials Committee and or Registrar.

Return to Practice for a Medical Laboratory Technologist not Currently Practising: refers to a MLT who has not engaged in the practice of Medical Laboratory Technology in more than one year (e.g. one year plus a day) and does not hold a practising position in Nova Scotia.

Timeframe I 5 years or less

    General MLTs, Diagnostic Cytology MLTs, Clinical Genetics MLTs who have practiced within the previous 5 years must obtain or have a valid teKnowledge.ns certificate before a Practicing License will be issued. MLT's must work towards holding a valid teKnowledge.ns certificate and provide prove of the necessary educational credits. Please contact the NSCMLT office to aid you in this process.

Timeframe II 5-10 years

    General MLTs, Diagnostic Cytology MLTs, Clinical Genetics MLTs who have not practiced in more than 5 years (5 years plus a day), but less than 10 years must successfully fulfill the following requirements before a Practicing License will be issued:
    * Refresher course in the discipline(s) they wish to practice.
    * 400 hours of direct supervised practice by a licensed MLT.
    * Temporary Restricted License will be issued in the discipline(s) being assessed for competencies by a licensed MLT.
    * All relevant competencies in the workplace must be demonstrated and signed off while under direct supervision in each discipline in which the MLT wish to obtain a practicing license.

Timeframe III 10 years or more

    General MLTs, Diagnostic Cytology MLTs, Clinical Genetics MLTs who have not practiced in 10 years (10 years plus a day) or more must fulfill the following requirements before a Practicing License will be issued:
    * Refresher course(s) in the discipline(s) they wish to practice.
    * 500 direct supervised practice hours by a licensed MLT.
    * A Temporary Restricted License will be issued in the discipline(s) being assessed for competencies by a licensed MLT.
    * All relevant competencies must be demonstrated and signed off while under direct supervision in each discipline in which the MLT wish to obtain a practicing license.

    The candidates Temporary Restricted license will be expanded to include practice in additional disciplines as additional courses are completed. The candidate must complete the required supervised practice hours to obtain a Practising license.

 

CLINICAL ASSESSMENTS FOR RETURN TO PRACTICE MLT'S

The NSCMLT Board of Directors has approved the NSCMLT Clinical Assessments for MLTs  that return to practice under the NSCMLT Return to Practice Policy.  The Clinical Assessments consist of General Competencies (Occupational Health and Safety, Data Management and Specimen Collection) and Discipline Specific Competencies (Cytotechnology, Clinical Genetics, Clinical Chemistry, Histotechnology, Blood Transfusion Science, Microbiology and Haematology).

MLTs with a prospective employer, that return to practice under the NSCMLT Return to Practice Policy, may forward a NSCMLT Initial Registration application to the College requesting a Temporary Restricted Licence if the following additional document can be provided with the completed application:

  • letter on official letterhead from employer that indicates the Discipline Specific Competency(s) that will be completed by the Employer and the MLT requesting the Temporary Licence.

On receipt of this information, the General and Discipline Specific Competency(s) will be forwarded to the employer for completion.

The Temporary Restricted Licence issued is valid only for the Discipline Specific Competency(s) requested.

Regardless of the Discipline Specific Competency(s) indicated, the General Competencies are required to be completed.  Completed General Competencies and Discipline Specific Competency(s) are required to be submitted at the same time that the confirmation of supervised practice hours is returned to the NSCMLT.  The licensed MLT responsible for the supervision of the MLT ‘s return to practice hours is requested to forward confirmation of supervised practice hours on official letterhead to the NSCMLT.

On receipt of completed Discipline Specific Competency(s), General Competencies and confirmation of supervised practice hours, the MLTs Temporary restricted licence will be altered to Practising in the specific general certification area(s) that has been refreshed.

All required documents; Discipline Specific Competency(s), General Competencies and confirmation of supervised practice hours must be received by NSCMLT and if incomplete it may result in revocation of the MLT’s Temporary Licence.  In agreement with Section 9 (2) of the NSCMLT Registration Regulations, A temporary member is permitted to practice medical laboratory technology only under the supervision of a licensed MLT and who is not a temporary member.

Please contact the NSCMLT Registrar if there are any questions.

If cases arise which do not fall within the scope of this policy, the Credentials Committee will review each case on an individual basis and render a decision on the requirements for returning to practice.  This decision will then be used as a guideline for future cases of a similar nature.

Appendix A

Refresher Course List

If there is a refresher course you know of that is not on this list please bring it to the attention of the NSCMLT office.

If you are interested in taking a refresher course not on this list and wish to have it count toward Return to Practice requirements, you must have it approved by the NSCMLT Credentials Committee prior to enrollment.

Developed: October 2004

Revised: June 2006, April 2015