LIVE COVERAGE: You Might Be a Med Tech
In a special session today at ASCP, Barbara M. Castleberry, PhD, MT(ASCP), took an introspective look at her 40-year career in medical technology in a lecture in her name.
Describing her personal and professional evolution from bench technologist, to educator, to administrator, Dr. Castleberry offered her perspective on using lessons of the past to face the challenges of the future.
In an entertaining trip through time, Dr. Castleberry recalled her early start in laboratory medicine, at Tampa General Hospital (circa 1966), when the technology of the day included a Technicon Dual Channel Auto Analyzer, a Coulter Counter Model A; and chemistry was performed manually, and urinalysis by dipstick.
She then played her rendition of "you might be a 60's med tech if ... " listing:
- you have ruined a new pair of pantyhose doing PBIs,
- used a paint shaker to mix a 24-hour fecal fat specimen,
- dropped the mercury bulb on a Van Slyke apparatus,
- done 120 VDRLs on Monday morning,
- performed a pregnancy test using a frog,
- hemolyzed the sheep blood in a batch of blood agar plates,
- eaten birthday cake off the counter in microbiology, or
- pipetted blood, spinal fluid or other body fluids by mouth.
Dr. Castleberry shared the following principles, goals and beliefs that guided her career: satisfaction, a sense of purpose, attitude, motivation and using failure to your advantage.
Of the importance of having a sense of purpose, she noted it is important to see a real benefit in what you do. Dr. Castleberry encouraged attendees to take a moment at the end of each shift to give themselves credit for what they have accomplished.