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Students to graduate from program Aug. 17

Heritage University’s Medical Laboratory Science Program will graduate 12 individuals ready to help meet the demand for high-skilled medical laboratory scientists in our community and nationwide.

While enrolled in the program, the students trained four days a week in clinical laboratories of regional partners including Virginia Mason Memorial Hospital, Astria Regional Medical Center, Lourdes Medical Center, Kadlec Regional Medical Center, TriCities Laboratories and Trios Southridge.

The students ran tests on patient samples, with results being used by physicians and nurses to diagnose illness and monitor treatments. They also performed culture and sensitivity testing on microorganisms, tested samples for hormones, glucose, cholesterol and electrolytes, and monitored medication levels in blood.

Terese Abreu, director of the program said the graduates are now skilled in the main sections of laboratory medicine: chemistry, hematology, microbiology and transfusion services.

“They’re ready for successful careers in the medical field where they’ll work in local hospital laboratories, doctors’ offices and pain management clinics, to name just a few of the opportunities,” Abreu said.

“The need for medical professionals in the lab is so vast, we are pleased to be partners with Heritage University in helping to fulfill this need in our community,” said Diane Patterson, chief of operations at Virginia Mason Memorial Hospital.

The graduates are preparing to take the national certificate exam to earn their medical laboratory scientists credentials.

Abreu said Heritage graduates have a 98 percent pass rate on the national exam, and the scores they earn are often above the national average.

The university will celebrate the graduates’ accomplishments with an Aug. 17 ceremony at 4 p.m. in Smith Family Hall, located in the Arts & Sciences Center at its main campus in Toppenish.

As part of the ceremony, the dozen students that make up the program’s class of 2018 will demonstrate the medical laboratory science skills they’ve acquired.

“This exercise is meant to build confidence in their abilities,” Abreu said. “The graduates will remember fondly where they were when they started at day one, and then they’ll see how far they’ve come in their professional program year.”


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