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Health providers in training benefit from new lab at CNC

CNC has created a new dry lab at its Prince George campus to provide more space for students in the growing medical laboratory technology sciences program.

The expansion and new equipment will ensure CNC students get the hands-on training they need to succeed in the growing field of health care.

“In the last year, the size of our incoming medical laboratory technology class has grown from 24 to 36 students,” said Dr. Tamara Chambers-Richards, CNC’s dean of health sciences. “With the dry lab, we can provide more space for students, but also better tailor education activities based on what students need at specific times in their studies.”

Medical laboratory technologists are key members of health care teams. They work closely with patients to retrieve blood and other samples needed for testing, and complete lab tests that inform treatment decisions for patients.

The term “dry” refers to activities that do not require the strict bio-hazard control measures that exist in the program’s main lab. The new dry lab features:

  • 18 new permanently mounted microscopes and computer workstations to provide a quality space for microscopic work (and reduce staff time transporting and storing microscopes);
  • A state-of-the-art piece of equipment, called a CellaVision, providing automated means of performing microscopic work. It includes a digital library of scanned slides for student use, and to build case studies. The new resource will also create opportunities to improve decision-making skills by combining their theoretical and practical knowledge.
  • Three practice phlebotomy stations and a bed for venipuncture labs to promote hands-on learning experiences in a controlled setting.

The dry lab is also part of a college effort to update instructional spaces and make them more flexible. CNC’s medical laboratory technology sciences program helps students to become key health care providers by training them to use specialized testing to assist physicians in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease in patients.

“The addition of more advanced educational environments helps prepare graduates for their transition into the health care workforce with greater confidence and competence, and ultimately, success,” said Doreen Stewart, Northern Health’s regional manager of student practice education. “Northern Health looks forward to the expansion of this program and retaining successful graduates to work in our beautiful region.”

Funding from the Ministry of Post Secondary Education and Future Skills paid for the dry lab renovation.

For details on the two-and-a-half-year diploma program, visit Medical Laboratory Technology Science Diploma to learn more.

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