Ah yes! My favorite time of year where I get to remind as many people as possible that I get to test bodily fluids all day long and basically just let people know that we exist. Medical Laboratory Science involves any and all diagnostic laboratory testing. The types of testing include typing for blood transfusions, predicting a course of antibiotics, cancer testing, cholesterol, diabetes, and the list goes on and on.
if you thought your doctor was simultaneously seeing patients, running lab tests, and investigating your house for mold, well then you've watched too many episodes of House! ;) But that would explain those long wait times! Doctors, nurses, laboratory scientists, pharmacists, etc all contribute their piece to the puzzle and are equally important to the diagnostic process. But since I sometimes feel like we are a hidden profession I will gladly use the celebration of Medical Laboratory Professionals Week as a platform to remind everyone that we are the ones providing your doctors and pharmacists the necessary results to get the patient their appropriate treatment. I also like to use this week to talk about parasites and bacteria without having to apologize. So there's that.
But now that you guys have an idea of what I do everyday, what's the best way to get my kids interested in the idea?
It's easy really. Science is all around us and pointing that out to small children is key in raising critical thinkers. Nothing in this world comes together fully assembled, and science explains it all. Start small and as they get older the curiosity will grow and grow. As I was doing some baking for lab week, Sebastian couldn't help but be intrigued by the whole process. His favorite part was watching the cupcakes and cookies expand in the oven. As he got more and more excited, I had to jog my memory with a quick Google search so we could talk about how the baking powder I used released carbon dioxide to help the dough / batter expand. We also discussed how each ingredient we added had a job. Structure, air, moisture, etc.
Ultimately I don't care what profession my children enter into to, but appreciating science and its fundamental role in the world around us just makes for smart, well rounded people. And all I could ever ask is that I raise moral, intelligent human beings that care for their environment and for mankind.