ASCP 2013 Wage Survey Indicates Certified Lab Professionals Earn More than Non-Certified

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Certified lab professionals earn more money than those who are not certified according to the ASCP's 2013 Wage Survey. Non-certified staff level phlebotomists (PBT), for example, reported that they make an average of $13.87 per hour, but the average wage for certified PBTs is $15.93, a 13.8 percent differential.

“Salaries continue to rise and that is good news,” says Andrea Bennett, MPH, MT(ASCP), Director of the ASCP Center for Public Policy and Chair of the ASCP Task Force on the Laboratory Professionals Workforce. “We still see that for most of the lab professionals, being certified makes a difference in wages."

“Salaries continue to rise and that is good news.” 
—Andrea Bennett, MPH, MT(ASCP) 

Published in the Fall 2013 issue of Lab Medicine, the ASCP Wage survey provides current wage data for U.S.-based laboratory scientists. This report is the second half of the ASCP’s Wage and Vacancy Surveys, which are administered as two separate surveys. The Wage portion highlights pay levels broken down by title, geography, certification and other variables using results of an online survey that requested data from more than 10,000 laboratory managers, directors, supervisors, and staff across the United States. ASCP sent electronic invitations to laboratory professionals at hospitals, non-pathologist physician offices, outpatient clinics and reference labs.

The 2013 Wage Survey indicates that the average age for laboratory professionals is 44, down from 48 within the last five years. “We are seeing an increasing number of younger people entering the profession,” Ms. Bennett says.

ASCP’s Board of Certification (BOC) collaborated with the ASCP’s Institute for Science, Technology, and Policy’s office in conducting the wage survey. ASCP BOC certification is widely accepted as the gold standard in the field of certification of medical laboratory professionals. To date more than 450,000 individuals hold BOC certification. BOC-certified individuals have long been recognized by hiring managers as possessing the necessary competence to perform the medical laboratory roles they seek.

The wage report shows the national average annual salaries for laboratory professionals. For example, the staff level MT/MLS/CLS national average is $56,430 per year and $77,113 per year at the supervisory level. Phlebotomists at the staff level make an average of $32,448 per year and supervisors average $34,757 per year. Histotechnicians average $49,837 per year at the staff level and $71,457 per year at the supervisory level.

The report provides useful geographical information, including states with highest and lowest pay for specific job categories. For example, medical laboratory technicians (MLT)/clinical laboratory technicians (CLT) staff and supervisor levels are paid the most in Washington, New Jersey and Massachusetts. California, Nevada, Oregon and Connecticut pay the most for staff and supervisor Medical Technologist/Medical Laboratory Scientist/Clinical Laboratory Scientist (MT/MLS/CLS)s.

The full report can be accessed here.