In the News: Recent CMS Decision on Nurses and Laboratory Testing

On April 1, 2016 the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Center for Clinical Standards and Quality/Survey & Certification Group released an internal memorandum that provides guidance to CLIA surveyors on acceptable forms of documentation of personnel qualifications for laboratory staff. With the exception of cytotechnologists, who must hold an American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) certification, proof that an individual has obtained the appropriate level degree (Associates, Bachelors, etc.) is sufficient.  Of note, the memorandum also states that “A bachelor’s degree in nursing meets the requirement of having earned a bachelor’s degree in a biological science for high complexity testing personnel.”2 It goes on to say that “An associate’s degree in nursing meets the requirement of having earned an associate’s degree in a biological science for moderate complexity testing personnel.”2  Click here for the full story.


California Bill AB1774 Update

The report on AB1774 in California generated much needed attention from Laboratory Field Services. The bill was introduced by assembly woman Susan Bonilla on February 3, 2016 in response to a recent state audit. The key recommendations were to remove licensure from Laboratory Field Services and defer to CLIA/CMS.

Since that time Laboratory Field Services has made a significant effort to perform its obligations and the Bill has since been dropped.  The Legislative update on the passage of AB599, signed into law on 9/21/2015 was presented by the CAC president Matt Riding on October 1st, 2016 at the annual meeting in Valencia California.

The two most important features of this historic bill are:
1.  California licensed cytotechnologists number 577.
2.  California licensed clinical laboratory scientists number 13,642.
The language of the bill was carefully written to protect the future of cytotechnologists and set an example for other states.

Assembly bill 599 language:
" A licensed cytotechnologist may perform all tests and procedures pertaining to cytology, including, but not limited to, microscopic and non microscopic methodologies and tests and procedures that utilize molecular or genetic methodologies, that are performed on cytologic specimens related to infectious disease or cancer diagnosis, under the overall operation and administration of a laboratory director."
Note: The laboratory director who meets CAP director qualifications is responsible for implementing and maintaining an effective competency assessment program.


2013 ASCT Wage & Employment Survey Results

Click here to view the results

ASCT conducted an online study of wages and employment among professionals in cytology during July 2013. The survey was pretested by Board members of ASCT in early April and launched in early July among 740 member and non-member individuals with deliverable email addresses.

A total of 319 responses were received, for an overall response rate of 43%. This is a relatively high response rate for association surveys, and the confidence intervals for the overall results had a margin of error +/- 4.9% at a 95% level of significance.


2013 ASCP Salary survey results

2013 ASCCP Algorithms 

ASCCP Mobile, an Updated Guidelines mobile reference app  available in iPhone/iPad and Android solutions


October 2012
Certification in Molecular Pathology in the United States
An Update from the Association for Molecular Pathology Training and Education Committee 


June 2012
CAP/ASCCP Lower Anogenital Squamous Terminology for
HPV-Associated Lesions
Summary of Consensus Recommendations 


February 2012
Clinical Laboratory Improvement Advisory Committee on Workload Recommendations for Automated Pap Test Screening