On the Job

Montana Licensure Requirements for CMAs (AAMA)

I recently received the following question from a CMA (AAMA)® working in Montana:

As a [CMA (AAMA)], is it possible and legal for me to take a job as a medical laboratory technician or medical technologist in the state of Montana? … Or, [do] I need to take any classes to be certified to do this type of job?

To answer this question, please review the application for Montana licensure of clinical laboratory scientists, including medical laboratory technicians. Note the following excerpt:

CLINICAL LABORATORY TECHNICIAN

• Graduated with an associate degree or possess 60 semester or 90 quarter hours in a science-related discipline, or completed a military medical laboratory training program of at least 12 months in duration.

• Passed a technician examination offered by a national certifying body for clinical laboratory scientists.

There are some exemptions under federal law, such as those detailed in the Montana Code Annotated 2019. Note the following language, which states that an individual performing only Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA)–waived tests does not have to become licensed:

37-34-302. Exemptions. (1) This chapter does not limit or regulate the practice of licensed physicians, including but not limited to pathologists.

(2) This chapter does not apply to:

(e) any person performing only waived tests as provided for in the federal clinical laboratory regulations set forth in 42 CFR part 493.

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