Is medical laboratory science marketable in Kenya?

This article answers the question “Is medical laboratory science marketable in Kenya?”..

Medical courses seem to fascinate a lot of form 4 leavers in Kenya for some reason..

Perhaps it is the uniform (nurses appear very neat in their uniforms), the pay (doctors are among the best paid professionals in Kenya), the prestige (medical professionals are well respected by the society)….  whatever it is, it is an open secret that many young Kenyans dream of working in hospitals and other medical facilities in Kenya..

But we also know that many things have changed when it comes to the availability of jobs in nearly all industries in Kenya (jobs are harder to come by these days) and even some medical courses do not guarantee you employment.

In this article, we shall look at your employment prospects if you do one of these courses: medical laboratory science.

So, is medical laboratory science marketable in Kenya?

Read on for my answer…

Is medical laboratory science marketable in Kenya?

Well, while it is not as marketable as courses like nursing, medical laboratory science has a good number of jobs..

In other words, while you might not get employed directly from college (lucky ones do), there is a good chance of you getting a meaningful job down the road (The thing is, you may  have to hustle a bit before securing a permanent job)..

One of the reasons why I consider the course fairly promising is the rate at which medical centers are being opened in Kenya..

If you check around you, you’re likely to notice more newer medical facilities in the town you live.

At least that is the case in the town I’m currently living in- I have noted that about 7 private clinics and two small hospitals have been started in my town in the last 3 years.

I should add that medical laboratory technologists are very important in the diagnosis process and doctors and clinicians cannot do without them when diagnosing illnesses in patients.

And that means that most of these medical centers cannot usually do without an in-house medical laboratory professional.

Also, I feel that as a course, medical lab science is not as flooded as medical courses like clinical medicine (I keep reading that many graduates of a clinical medicine diploma are taking too long to get jobs)..

To cut the long story short, medical laboratory technology is a fairly marketable course and people do secure work at some point (but be prepared to hustle for some time).

The other reason I find the course good is that you can employ yourself..

Yeah, you can open your own medical lab after graduating and getting the right certificates including a practicing certificate from KMLTTB(Kenya Medical laboratory technicians and technologists board).

And yes, you can make good money if you market your business properly.

Let us now look at the minimum entry qualifications for the course including KMTC medical lab requirements.

Medical laboratory science requirements in Kenya

Certificate in medical laboratory science requirements

Unfortunately, you cannot take a certificate in medical laboratory science in KMTC.

You cannot also pursue a craft certificate in medical laboratory technology as the course is no longer offered at the certificate level.

In short, you lowest you can start is at the Diploma level and below are the entry requirements..

Diploma in Medical Laboratory Sciences in Kenya requirements

You need these grades (minimum) to do a diploma in medical lab at KMTC:

KCSE Mean Grade: C

Additional requirements

English or Kiswahili: C

Biology/Biological Sciences: C

Chemistry/Physical Sciences: C

Finally, you must also have a  C plain grade in any of these: Mathematics, Physics/Physical Sciences

You can also take a Diploma from the following National Polytechnics in Kenya as long as you have the above grades:

  • Eldoret National Polytechnic– Call 0714 871 685,0738 092 126
  • Kisii National Polytechnic– Call 0700152177/0752031300
  • Kisumu National Polytechnic– Call 0723 446 773

The other institution offering the course is Mawego Technical Training Institute (Call 0734 156 640)

Degree in Medical Laboratory Science in Kenya (requirements)

The following are the minimum requirements if you want to pursue a Bachelor of Science (Bsc.) In Medical Laboratory Science and Technology in Kenya:

KCSE Mean Grade: C+

Additional requirements

Biology C+
Chemistry C+
Math / physics C+
English / Kiswahili C+

Universities offering Medical Laboratory Science in Kenya

  • Alupe University College
  • Baraton University
  • JKUAT University
  • Kisii University
  • Kenyatta University
  • Mt Kenya University
  • Masinde Muliro University of Science & Technology
  • Maseno University
  • Moi University
  • Meru University of Science & Technology
  • Muranga University of Technology
  • SEKU (SouthEastern Kenya University)
  • University of Nairobi

What do holders of medical laboratory science qualifications do?

Below now are some of the typical jobs and responsibilities you will be expected to discharge once you get work:

  • Effectively manage all laboratory supplies in order to ensure their availability, efficient use, as well as minimal stock variances.
  • Dispatch samples for out-sourced testing on time and maintain the necessary records.
  • Maintain laboratory archives.
  • Assist in media preparation as well as the sterilization of lab apparatus and waste.
  • Follow relevant infection control guidelines/standards to minimize hazards brought about by infectious specimens.
  • Collect required specimens from patients.
  • Carrying out requested laboratory tests in a careful manner and accurately by following standard operating procedures.
  • Preparing laboratory reagents
  • Indexing and processing all experimental data.
  • Compiling and submitting lab research reports.
  • Maintaining the inventory of all lab assets and consumables.
  • Performing the calibration and other quality control procedures ahead of performing tests.

Skills and interests required to pursue a career in this field

  • Good organizational skills.
  • Above average problem-solving skills
  • Good interpersonal skills.
  • Ability to work without continuous supervision.
  • High levels of integrity (you must be able to maintain confidentiality).

Other requirements by employers

Apart from having a Diploma or a Degree in medical laboratory sciences, you could be asked for the following:

Registration with KMLTTB(Kenya Medical laboratory technicians and technologists board)- KMLTTB is the body that licenses medical lab practitioners in Kenya and it is important to register with them immediately after you finish the course.

Driving license- Possession of a genuine driving license is considered a plus by some employers

Excellent computer skills– For the most part, you need to have a certificate proving that you’re proficient in the use of various computer software too.

 

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Is public health marketable in Kenya?

Is health records marketable in Kenya?

Is medical engineering marketable in Kenya?

 

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CPA John Gitahi is a former college lecturer and has been involved in education all his life. He's passionate about helping young people make great career choices. He studied Commerce and ICT at the University and runs several successful online entreprises. He is also an avid traveller.

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