Histotechnician Salary

A major part of providing in-depth, comprehensive patient care is the diagnoses of illnesses and diseases. That process is commonly handled by the pathological examination of blood, tissue, body fluids and more. Collecting and preparing those samples for testing fall under the purview of histotechnicians, also known as histologic technicians, histotechnologists, pathology specialists, clinical laboratory technologists and more, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS.gov).

Salary overview for histotechnicians

Salary data from the BLS shows the national median wage for medical and clinical laboratory technologists was $58,430 in 2013. As wages can be influenced by factors such as experience, location and certification, the overall salary range for laboratory technologists varied in 2013, from approximately $39,000 to $80,000.

The national salary range from the BLS can be seen below:

  • 10% - up to $39,940
  • 25% - $49,100
  • Median - $58,430
  • 75% - $69,900
  • 90% - at least $80,820

Completing the wage data from the BLS is an earnings report from the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP), which published a 2013 survey of wage data for clinical laboratories in the United States. The ASCP report detailed both hourly and annual wages for both histotechnicians and histechnologists.

Histotechnicians. According to the report, the national average hourly wage for histotechnicians is $23.96. However, those numbers fluctuate, depending on experience and title:

  • Staff: $23.96
  • Lead: $26.81
  • Supervisor: $31.29

The national annual wage for histotechnicians was $49,837. Again, those numbers adjust, based on experience and title:

  • Staff: $49,837
  • Lead: $55,769
  • Supervisor: $71,457

In addition to title, certifications may also impact earning potential. The AACP report revealed that individuals holding a credential or certification earned approximately 6.5 percent per hour more than those without certifications:

  • Certified: $26.09 per hour
  • Non-certified: $24.48 per hour

Histotechnologists. According to the AAPC report, histotechnologists earned a national hourly wage of $26.63. Like histotechnician positions, earnings may vary based on title:

  • Staff: $26.63
  • Lead: $28.76
  • Supervisor: $32.41

The national average wage for staff technicians was slightly over $55,000. The breakout by title is as follows:

  • Staff: $55,390
  • Lead: $59,820
  • Supervisor: $80,857

Histotechnician certifications

As reported by the AAPC, certifications can impact earning potential for histotechnicians. Certifications are available from several organizations, including American Medical Technologist and the National Society for Histotechnology.

The National Society for Histotechnology offers multiple certification tracks for Technicians, Technologists and Specialists. Example certifications in each track include the following:

Technologists:

  • Medical Technologist, MT (ASCP)
  • Cytotechnologist, CT (ASCP)
  • Hematology, H (ASCP)

Technicians:

  • Medical Laboratory Technician, MLT (ASCP)
  • Histotechnician, HT (ASCP)
  • Ashpheris Technician, AT (ASCP)

Best paying states for histotechnicians

State-level data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics reveals the top states for annual income included California ($79,710), Connecticut ($70,110), Massachusetts ($69,000), New Jersey ($65,930) and Vermont ($65,630).

Seventeen of the top 20 states had annual average salaries between $60,000 and $69,000, with California and Connecticut both topping $70,000 annually. Rounding out the top ten best paying states for histotechicians include:

  1. Alaska: $65,450
  2. Rhode Island: $65,160
  3. Oregon: $64,950
  4. New York: $64,440
  5. Nevada: $63,750

Employment projections for medical and clinical laboratory technologists

The outlook for career growth within the field of medical laboratory technology is positive. Nationally, employment openings are projected to reach 22 percent between 2012 and 2022, according to job data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

At the state level, the ten states with the largest projected employment increases for histotechnicians include the following:

  1. Utah: 26.1%
  2. Texas: 23.3%
  3. Colorado: 22.3%
  4. Alaska: 21.8%
  5. Indiana: 21%
  6. Washington: 20.2%
  7. Virginia: 19.9%
  8. Idaho: 19.7%
  9. Arizona: 19.6%
  10. Minnesota: 17.3%

With multiple career paths, an expanding industry and solid earning potential, histology is a field worth exploring for prospective students.

Sources

American Medical Technologist, Certifications, http://www.americanmedtech.org/GetCertified.aspx

National Society for Histotechnology, 2013 Wage Survey of Clinical Laboratories in the US, http://www.nsh.org/sites/default/files/2013%20ASCP%20Wage%20Survey.pdf

Bureau of Labor Statistics, OOH, Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technologists and Technicians, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/medical-and-clinical-laboratory-technologists-and-technicians.htm

Bureau of Labor Statistics, OES, Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technologists and Technicians, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes292011.htm

ONET, Histotechnologists and Histologic Technicians, http://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/29-2011.03

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