Western Pathology Quality Assurance Association (WPQAA) is leveraging a small revenue stream to initiate a nationwide effort to relieve the shortage of medical technologists.

Scope of the Problem
Each year, 4,000 newly trained medical technologists are needed to replace others leaving the workforce and an additional 3,000 are needed to keep up with the growth in work volume. Fewer than 2,000 medical technologists, however, graduated in 2004. The graduation rate has edged up in recent years, but it remains well below historic levels of 3,572 in 1995 and 6,519 in 1977.

Many universities have reacted to the loss of interest in clinical laboratory careers by pulling the plug on their four-year MT programs. The number of these programs has declined from nearly 800 in 1970 to 232 in 2004. Nonetheless, as the technologistsí supply tapers off, the workload increases. In response, many labs have brought in more automation and hired staff with less training.

Seed Money for Endowments
In this setting, a cadre of highly trained medical technologists is more important than ever to maintain and improve laboratory medicine. WPQAA has, therefore, established initial $10,000 endowments at ten schools of medical technology and one school with a masters program in laboratory medicine:

Despite the high level of interest from Medical Technology programs, the endowments are so small that it can be difficult to persuade big universities to accept them. Once established, however, they can grow with money contributed by alumni and other sources directed to the endowments. For example, the endowment administered by the University of Washington has grown to $100,979, Sacred Heart Hospital to $39,413, San Jose State University to $24,565, San Francisco State University to $30,052 and Colorado Center for Medical Laboratory Science to $33,055. The $110,000 invested in these programs beginning in 2002, now has a total market value of $333,398 with an additional more than $42,700 being distributed in grants to students.

WPQAA Endowment/Scholarship Progress Report

Institution Date
Funded
Interest & Contributions Market
Value
Awards
Granted
Awards
Available
Class
Size
Laboratory
Training Sites
British Columbia Institute of Technology 4/4/2002 $10,000 $15,400 $0
  2004 0  15,400 708      
  2005 0  15,400 772      
2006 0  15,400 772
  2007 0  15,400 772   1st yr  82  
  3/31/2008 0  15,440 772   2nd yr  58  
  12/1/2009 0 13,124 1,297      
  3/31/2010 0 15,440 556      
  3/31/2011 605 15,131 605     16
  3/30/2012 519 15,440 605 519    
  3/31/2014 3,559 18,999 551      
               
University of Washington
baccalaureate
9/14/2002 $10,000 $10,000 ---      
  6/30/2003 2,200 12,791 ---      
  6/30/2004 6,395 21,296  970      
  6/30/2005 2,755 25,298 1,098      
  6/30/2006 2,410 30,768 1,289      
  6/30/2007 15,520 53,764 1,944  2,353    
  6/30/2008 6,288 58,192 2,506 2,628    
  9/30/2008   56,358    

23 - 28

 
  6/30/2009   49,596 2,220 1,705    
  9/30/2009 2,695 53,193 2,000 2,200    
  6/30/2010 3,100 55,497 2,500 1,135    
  2/17/2011 1,500 62,144   2,000+ 30 13
  6/30/2011 1,490 62,979 2,225 2,460    
  6/30/2012 2,900 62,224 2,475 2,517    
  1/1/2013 1,730 68,936 3,000      
  8/16/2013 1,796 74,160 1,250 2,800    
  6/30/2014 27,330 109,212 3,541 3,909    
               
University of Washington master's 3/28/2007 $10,000   $0      
  2/1/2008 2,000 $12,947 0      
  9/30/2008 0 11,635 0      
  6/30/2009 809 10,017 459 351    
  9/30/2009 240 10,732 0 1,060    
  6/30/2010 273 11,039 0 1,135 12 2
  6/30/2011 350 12,618   446    
  6/30/2012 71 11,954 0 484    
  1/1/2013 75 12,617   2,542    
  8/16/2013 0 13,074   2,666    
  10/1/2013 520 14,390 0      
  6/30/2014 1,318 15,849 534 567    
               
Sacred Heart (Spokane) 9/2/2003 $10,000 $10,000 $0 29    
  12/30/2004 187 10,399  0 399    
  12/31/2005 3,906 13,931 0 817    
  12/31/2006 4,685 19,444 0 1,407    
  12/31/2007 500 21,126 0 2,286    
  12/31/2008 3,906 15,425 1,496 1,576 14+  
  12/31/2009 930 19,428 0 2,233    
  12/31/2010 234 22,537 1,678 547   7
  12/31/2011   22,526   1,280    
  12/31/2012 3,582 28,267 0 2,100    
  8/30/2013   32,074 0      
  10/31/2013   39,413 0 2,644    
  11/30/2014 2,826 40,042 0 2,249    
               
Arizona State University 6/16/2004 $10,000 $10,000 $0      
  6/30/2004 0 10,000 0      
  12/30/2004 0 9,934 0      
  6/30/2005 932 10,326 0 340    
  6/30/2006 1,513 11,181 0 778    
  7/30/2007 0 12,561 471 649    
  7/30/2008 0 11,867 500 549

24

 
  6/30/2009 0 9,187 382 931    
  9/1/2010

 Program terminated; $10,000 returned to WPQAA

 

0

               
San Jose State
University
6/1/2005 $10,000 $10,000 $0      
  2/1/2007 10,000 20,000 0      
  2/5/2008 0 20,000 800     17
  1/22/2010 1,091 20,000    

29

 
  3/21/2012   20,649 2X500 500 34  
  12/31/2012   20,614 754   38  
  12/6/2013 3,015 24,565 754      
  6/30/2014 1,377 25,789 928      
               
Colorado Center for Medical
Laboratory Science
9/9/2007 $10,000 $10,000 $0      
  9/28/2007 7,064 17,064 0      
  12/31/2008 1,200 $18,362 800     40
  2/1/2010 1,225 19,591 975   18+  
  12/31/2010 1,109 21,976 1,250      
  9/4/2013   26,294     24  
  12/16/2013 2,042 33,055        
  6/30/2014 97 33,055 0      
               
California State University Dominguez Hills 2009         31  
  5/28/2010 $10,000 $10,000 $0  

40

10 Full + 5P
  6/30/2011 236 10,236 0   42 11 Full + 5P
  4/30/2012 228 10,464 0   43 11 Full + 6P
  6/30/2012 1,156 11,620 0   43  
  3/31/2013 0 11,620 2x300   44 12 Full + 6P
  8/31/2013 1,200 11,620 0 3x300    
  12/20/2013 631 12,778 0      
  6/30/2014 0 12,450 0      
               
San Francisco State University 12/9/2010 $10,000 $10,000 $0  

35

16
  10/28/2011 7,795 17,795 0   40  
  4/19/2013   18,295 0   44  
  5/1/2013   25,295 1x500      
  12/1/2013 4,757 30,052        
  12/31/2014 87 30,179 500      
               
University of Nebraska 12/21/2010 $10,000 $10,000 $0  

32

19
+ 5 university affiliates
  6/30/2011 247 10,334 0      
  12/31/2011 166 10,500 0      
  6/30/2012 513 9,911 0      
  2/29/2013 41 11,095 0   39  
  7/31/2013   26,279 0      
  9/30/2013   31,362        
  6/30/2014 4,883 33,291        
               
Oregon Institute of Technology 6/1/2011 $10,000 $10,000 $0  

28

21
  6/30/2012 555 10,555 0      
  12/26/2013 2,334 12,819 534      
  6/30/2014 3,037 14,542 267      
               
University of Missouri 11/3/2011        

12

3
  6/30/2012            
  12/9/2013   11,203        
  6/30/2014 1,700 12,903 513      


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