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World Health Worker Week: Recognizing the Work of Laboratory Professionals

This post originally appeared on on the Knowledge for Health (K4Health) Blog.

Since I joined K4Health almost two years ago, I have had the privilege of working with the Association of Medical Laboratory Science of Nigeria (AMLSN) and the Medical Laboratory Science Council of Nigeria (MLSCN). They represent a category of health professionals who I scarcely knew existed before. In The hidden profession that saves lives, Rodney Rohde, professor and Associate Dean for Research at Texas State University, describes the role that medical laboratory professionals play:"Have you ever wondered who conducts the detailed laboratory testing for your annual exam, such as cholesterol and glucose levels, and analyzes the results? Or who conducts specialized testing for genetic disorders like sickle cell disease? How about those who identify an antibiotic resistant infection like Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and determine which antibiotic is required to save someone's life? Well, if you thought that it was your physician, or perhaps a nurse or someone else you see at your doctor's office or in the hospital, you would be incorrect."

AMLSN works hard to ensure that everyone has access to a skilled, motivated, supplied, and supported health worker within a robust health system.  

AMLSN’s mission is to encourage the study of medical laboratory science and advance its practice, which they do through programming via radio, television, and social media. Their dedication to the profession, the services they provide, and the communities they serve have been on constant display through my work with them. Together with K4Health, AMLSN has developed six eLearning modules focused on helping medical laboratory scientists stay up-to-date on the latest information, guidelines, and techniques as required to maintain their license to practice. In addition to authoring accredited eLearning courses, AMLSN also holds an Annual Scientific Conference and General Meeting (this year marks the 50th anniversary), publishes a Journal, and is developing a West Africa Postgraduate College of Medical Laboratory Science.

They are an affiliate of Federation of African Associations of Medical Laboratory Scientists (FAAMLS) and the International Federation of Biomedical Laboratory Scientists (IFBMLS).

AMLSN is working hard on the goals of Health Worker Week: to ensure that everyone has access to a skilled, motivated, supplied, and supported health worker within a robust health system. They have also opened my eyes to a “hidden profession.”