ASCP News - April 2024

By Susan Montgomery - April 08, 2024


Dynamic Building Bridges Webinar Series Returns

The second installment of the Building Bridges Across the Laboratory Community webinar series has just begun and will take place monthly on Wednesdays, from 11am- 12 pm CST, through June. The series—presented by ASCP, in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Division of Laboratory Systems—highlights case studies of laboratory partnerships and alliances that have played a vital role in addressing workforce challenges and/or enhancing public health response efforts.

Each webinar will focus on key aspects relevant to the greater laboratory community, such as the collective impact of these partnerships, lessons learned, and best practices applicable to those seeking to implement similar collaborations or interventions.

This year, each webinar will feature two to three mini case studies on a core topic, with additional integration of case studies demonstrating the important role that public health laboratories play in partnerships. Join us as we examine the dynamic landscape of laboratory collaborations and communities.

The live sessions in this year’s series will be eligible for free CMLE credit (1 CMLE credit/webinar) through the ASCP store. To learn about upcoming webinars and registration information, visit

New Medical and Public Health Laboratory Workforce Coalition Gaining Traction

ASCP is gaining recognition among several prominent allied health organizations for its integral role in establishing the Medical and Public Health Laboratory Workforce Coalition (MPHLWC) and other workforce initiatives.

The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP), which represents more than 100 national health profession associations, providers, certification bodies, and educators, recently invited ASCP staff to provide an overview of how the coalition was developed, its current activities, and goals at its symposium in January. Laboratory workforce data and initiatives were also shared, demonstrating partnerships among laboratory organizations to support the pathology and laboratory field.

“CAAHEP is one of our coalition members and its Executive Director Gina Scarboro thought it would be beneficial for allied health representatives to hear about the development of the coalition,” says Edna Garcia, MPH, ASCP Senior Director of Scientific Engagement and Research, who represented ASCP at the symposium in Jacksonville, FL.

The MPHLWC coalition was several years in the making. ASCP collaborated with the University of Washington Center for Health Workforce Studies in 2021 in a study on the medical laboratory workforce. The data that emerged from that study went into a report, known as the Blueprint for Action, which outlined recommendations to address the workforce shortage. Following the publication of the Blueprint, ASCP established a Workforce Steering Committee which is working to implement the recommendations.

“It appears that some of the allied health professions encounter challenges in gathering the kind of robust data that we have, whereas ASCP has other partners that help us in the data gathering process,” Ms. Garcia says. She will give a similar presentation in March in Pentagon City, VA, before the American Blood Center, also a coalition partner.

“ASCP is unique in the partnerships it has established over many years,” Ms. Garcia says. “Through these partnerships among lab-related organizations, we were able to gather such robust data and create multifaceted initiatives to strengthen the medical laboratory workforce. We are more than happy to share with other allied health organizations the process that we created as we strive to strengthen the laboratory workforce.”

Two New Chapters Join Growing Roster of ASCP Chapters Nationwide

ASCP has added a new Carolinas Chapter and a Texas Riverwalk Chapter to an ever-expanding list of chapters across the United States. The Carolinas Chapter, which serves both North and South Carolina, hopes to host its first meet-and-greet event later this spring in Charlotte, NC. ASCP chapters provide the opportunity to attend regional networking events and collaborate with other pathologists and laboratory professionals about issues affecting the laboratory. To learn more, visit and click on ASCP Local Chapters.

Laboratory Day of Service Offers ASCP Members a Way to Give Back to Their Communities

ASCP will hold its inaugural Laboratory Day of Service this spring to encourage laboratory professionals and pathologists to transform their passion for this profession into service that empowers members and strengthens communities.

The ASCP Day of Service will be held during Medical Laboratory Professionals Week (aka Lab Week), from April 14-20, 2024, and offers an opportunity for members talk about to the laboratory’s essential role to the community, while shedding light on the laboratory workforce shortage and the variety of careers that are available within the laboratory.

Participants may choose any day during Lab Week as their Day of Service. ASCP Ambassadors are encouraged to take the lead and:

  • Research local service opportunities (or create one).
  • Choose the day during Lab Week to organize an event.
  • Plan an activity. It could be an Ambassador-type student or community laboratory awareness event, or a volunteer service project.
  • During the activity, talk about Medical Laboratory Professionals Week and what that means.
  • Invite local media to cover the event.
  • Publicize the event on social media, using hashtags #ASCP #ASCPLabWeek #ASCPDayOfService.

The Society encourages ASCP Ambassadors worldwide to embrace the ASCP Day of Service, working individually or with others on a project or event, and then share that story. Anyone who is not an Ambassador and wishes to lead a Day of Service project or event may contact ASCP’s Membership Department at

ASCP 2024 40 Under Forty Program Celebrates Emerging Leaders! Apply or Nominate Someone Today!

Applications for ASCP’s 2024 40 Under Forty program are now being accepted through April 19, 2024. Celebrate your professional achievements and apply to become part of this prestigious program!

The ASCP 40 Under Forty program recognizes members under 40 for their achievements and leadership qualities impacting pathology and laboratory medicine. Forty pathologists, laboratory professionals, and residents are chosen annually through an application or nomination process. The program has recognized worthy members of the laboratory team, both nationally and internationally. From the 40 Under Forty honorees, five individuals are selected as the 40 Under Forty Top Five through a combination of public voting and committee selection.

Many previous 40 Under Forty Top Five honorees say the experience opens new avenues for growth, offers the opportunity to meet people who may be potential mentors, and fosters networking with colleagues. Apply now! Visit

University of Connecticut MLS Students Reign Supreme in Cell Bowl Competition

ASCP and YouTuber Medical Lab Lady Gill completed the 2023 Cell Bowl competition to help medical laboratory students strengthen their knowledge while preparing for the ASCP Board of Certification exams. The winning team of medical laboratory science (MLS) students were none other than the reigning champions of the top prize in the 2022 Cell Bowl—a team of MLS students from critical values | volume 17 | issue 2 April 2024 | critical values 33 the University of Connecticut, under the leadership of Bruce Blanchard, Director of Medical Laboratory Science, and assistant clinical professor in the Allied Health Sciences Department.

The Cell Bowl is a lively, interactive competition between medical laboratory science programs nationwide that culminates in the Super Cell Bowl for the Varsity league and the Second Chance Showdown for the Junior Varsity league. A team of MLS students from Wichita State University won the Second Chance Showdown and received a virtual fieldtrip to the CellAVision headquarters. The Cell Bowl tests the scientific knowledge of MLS and MLT students with team competitions that enhance their knowledge of blood cell morphology and build their professional networks.

The Super Cell Bowl winning institution receives a trophy, the ASCP BOC Study Guide and Interactive Practice Exam Bundle, and individual participant certificates. ASCP is the top-tier sponsor and supporter of the Cell Bowl. The Cell Bowl is the brainchild of ASCP member Tiffany Gill, MA, MLS(ASCP)CM, also known as “Medical Lab Lady Gill,” who is coordinator of the Medical Laboratory Technology program at the College of Southern Maryland came up with the concept for her own medical laboratory technician students. She wanted to share this fun education tool with educators across ASCP’s membership. Ms. Gill loves to engage medical laboratory students in learning and also educates through her YouTube channel, Medical Lab Lady Gill. Watch for details about the 2024 Cell Bowl by clicking on and then click on Get Recognized.

ASCP Transitions Choosing Wisely Program, Continuing Commitment to Effective Test Utilization

After a successful 10-year run, the ABIM Foundation has chosen to discontinue its Choosing Wisely campaign. ASCP, which joined the Choosing Wisely campaign soon after its inception in 2012, is reorganizing its effective test utilization efforts to continue supporting the needs of patients and its members. ASCP’s effective test utilization initiatives will be folded into the work of its Quality and Patient Safety Steering Committee. Going forward, ASCP will continue to champion efforts to bring the right test to the right patient at the right time under its effective test utilization best practices campaign.

ASCP has had tremendous success with its Choosing Wisely program, serving as the organization representing pathology and laboratory medicine. It’s been an incredible honor working with colleagues to identify services that provide the best value for our patients,” says Elise Occhipinti, MD, FASCP, chair of ASCP’s Quality and Patient Safety Steering Committee.

When the Choosing Wisely program was launched, the ABIM Foundation’s historic campaign sought to address the issue of over-utilization of testing across many facets of the healthcare industry and to spark conversations between clinicians and patients about what tests, treatments, and procedures are needed and cost efficient.

“The ABIM Foundation’s Choosing Wisely campaign was the catalyst to get this conversation started and to put the framework for vetting recommendations in place,” says ASCP Chief Medical Officer Ali Brown, MD, FASCP. “It was highly successful, and ASCP is ready to take it from there.”

“We will continue to accept and vet new recommendations under the effective test utilization best practices campaign,” she says. “ASCP is also moving toward an expanded focus where we will look at the implementation of practical tools and programs that laboratories across the country can use in their own utilization and quality improvement initiatives.”

ASCP’s participation in Choosing Wisely over the past decade engaged more than 750 members in the process of vetting the many recommendations that were proposed for inclusion. The diverse expertise that ASCP members brought to the table has touched a significant portion of the decisions made in patient care, Dr. Brown notes.

To learn more about ASCP’s ongoing work in effective test utilization, please contact Liz Waibel, MPH, ASCP Senior Director of Quality Initiatives and Health Policy, at

Susan Montgomery

ASCP communications writer