Medical laboratory science is the study and practice of diagnostic medicine. A practitioner with appropriate education (ordinarily a bachelor's degree) in the profession is called a Medical Laboratory Scientist (MLS). Medical laboratory scientists perform tests that analyze blood, urine, tissue or other body specimens. These professionals perform, develop, evaluate, correlate and assure accuracy and validity of laboratory data. A medical laboratory scientist's role is to provide accurate laboratory results in a timely manner. These results are used to confirm a diagnosis or to monitor treatment.
Medical laboratory scientists practice independently and collaboratively and are responsible for their own professional actions. The ability to relate to people, care about patient outcomes and display calm and reasoned judgment are essential qualities. Although medical laboratory scientists seldom have personal contact with patients, they play a major role in disease diagnosis and in monitoring therapy. They work closely with physicians, researchers and other health care professionals.