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Hi all I was wondering if someone could pleaseee help me out. My husband is a biochemist who is applying to a job for a microbiology medical technologist. They ask very specific questions that he needs to answer on paper. He has an overall knowledge but he has mainly worked in research, not clinical settings. So can anyone help out with these questions so that his answers will be most accurate?

1. Knowledge of antibiotics and their appropriate use in the treatment of infectious disease. (Give examples of appropriate
treatment and inappropriate treatment choices for MRSA, ESBL-producing Enterobacteriaceae, and MDR Acinetobacter

2. Ability to perform studies such as culture set-ups for routine and fastidious organisms, isolation and identification of
pathogens, and susceptibility testing on pathogens. (Give examples of requests to rule-out a routine and a fastidious
organism, and a probable workflow of the request from beginning to end.)

3. Ability to operate, calibrate, and maintain laboratory instruments and equipment. (Give examples of instruments and
equipment used in a clinical Microbiology laboratory and your abilities regarding them.)

4. Knowledge of quality control procedures. (Give examples of routine QC processes in a clinical Microbiology laboratory.)


I would say that it's going to be a hard sell for him. Most people that work in micro are M.T. (ASCP) and they will know this going in, as it's included in the internship training for M.T's and is covered in the registry examination. I am surprised that a lab would even consider a biochemist who is not trained in medical micro.

As far as treatment choices for the organisms listed, my answer would be that I am not a physician and this is out of the realm of expertise of a micro tech to some extent. However, I think what they are getting at is that he has to have basic working knowledge of sensitivity patterns for MRSA, ESBL's and MDR ACBC's. Vanco would always be appropriate for MRSA. ESBL stands for extended spectrum beta lactamase producer (you can google this). We run Colistin and Tigecycline on MDR ACBC's the first time they are isolated on a patient.

Question 2 is just too extensive to go into here. He needs to know basic microbiology; including basic media and selective media. Without some training in clinical micro I think he's going to have a rough road to hoe.

Clinical Micro doesn't have a lot of instrumentation but the basic instrument is the automated equipment for ID/Sensitivities. There are two platforms in use in large labs: Microscan and Vitek2. There are also other platforms like the Phoenix. I only have knowledge of Vitek2. Again - WAY too complicated to go into here. There are still a few labs that do everything manually but that is getting to be less and less nowadays, although basic biochemical reactions for organisms are still part of the registry examination.

Micro QC is fairly standard but again, there are QC standards for manual sensis vs. automated sensis. It involves 30 day QC vs. weekly QC vs. daily QC for different reagents and tests. Some items require "on receipt" QC and then repeat QC once the reagent is opened and then every so often thereafter depending on what it is. My QC assignment is Gram Stain Reagents. The rules for those are "on receipt" and then weekly once in use. However, when Gram's Iodine is reconstituted you must QC the day it is put into use (two things have to be combined to make commercial Gram's Iodine) and then weekly thereafter. Decolorizer must be QC'd the day it is made and then weekly thereafter (assuming the lab makes it, which we do).

I have been a micro tech for over 30 years. This is all knowledge acquired both in training and on-the-job. These are fairly basic questions to screen out candidates that don't know clinical microbiology. Your husband needs to get his hands on some info either via the internet or a basic clinical micro textbook pronto.

I think his only hope is stressing that he is willing to learn the ropes and concentrate on what he DOES know from his research. Good luck.

Check out for more information about getting the proper credentials.

Edited by bactitech on Dec 20, 2011 - 9:42 PM



Thanks very much for this comment. It help me to think about my ideals.

Tks again and pls keep posting.


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Thanks very much for this comment and link. I was actually hired from another interview I had. I'm sure this thread will be useful for others though.

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Edited by vegetablevn on Sep 09, 2010 - 7:46 PM




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I agreed with you. Any way, your points of view make me thinking about some thing for my project.

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Edited by topconlacj on Dec 29, 2011 - 5:16 AM. : Update


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Quality technician interview questions


Best regards.



Thanks very much for this comment. It help me to think about my ideals.

Tks again and pls keep posting.

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Edited by quynh012012 on Jan 05, 2012 - 8:54 PM



Thanks very much for this comment. It help me to think about my ideals.

Tks again and pls keep posting.


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