Happy Histotechnology Professionals Day!

Today is Histotechnology Professionals Day, commonly known as HPD, a day dedicated to the important, but often overlooked role that histotechs play in patient diagnosis. This HPD is particularly special, as it marks a decade since the first HPD, March 10th 2010. To celebrate, NSH has asked our histology community to submit videos, photos, and articles documenting what lab life is like in 2020, and the changes that have occurred over the course of their careers. These submissions will serve as a virtual time capsule, for the next generation of histologists to open on HPD 2030. You can check out the submissions, and add your own, on the NSH website: https://www.nsh.org/nsh-events/histotechnology-day

If your lab is celebrating, make sure to post your pictures to social media, including NSH's Histology Professionals Facebook Page, using #HPD, #ns4histotech, #histology, and don't forget to tag us @ns4histotech.

Check out this article by 2010 Region Director, Melissa Hill, documenting the first HPD, published in NSH In Action:

"The medical laboratory is made up of many different professions, each requiring its own level of education and expertise. The profession that is nearest and dearest to me is histotechnology.

Although many may be unaware of the important role that the histotechnologist plays in providing a diagnosis for the patient, we are the group of professionals who combine our technical skills with scientific knowledge to perform a wide range of tissue-related procedures in our laboratories. We go above and beyond to prepare and stain tissue sections in a variety of ways to enable the patholo­gist to identify an underlying disease.

We are artists in every sense of the word. We have learned to work with limited amounts of very small tissue, very large tissue, over-fixed and under-fixed tissue and just about any other kind of tissue you can imagine. Some of us work in state-of-the-art laboratories and hospitals while others of us work in the windowless basements of our facilities (otherwise known to some as “the dungeon”). Some of us work in pathology laboratories, while others work in veterinary, industry or research laboratories.

Whatever your case may be, we have all done our best to create and deliver quality work because we know that only the best will do. We have given our all, sacrificed our time, sometimes given up vacation days or important events to help others because we know there is a sick person behind every piece of tissue we touch. We are usually the unseen, unknown or forgotten spoke in the wheel of medical related professions.

We celebrate along with technologists in other fields of medicine during Medical Laboratory Professionals Week, but now is the time we shine the spotlight directly on us. At the 2008 Board of Directors meeting in Pittsburgh, a task force was created to develop a Histotechnology Day. I am proud to tell you that we have finally succeeded! Our first Annual Histotechnology Day will be observed March 10, 2010. A t-shirt contest has been announced. We are looking for logo designs and slogans. The designs will be placed online at the NSH website so members can see the creations that have been received.

NSH is creating a toolkit consisting of a sample press release, a proclamation that may be signed by your community’s mayor or state governor, suggestions for publicizing the event, etc. Our goal is to have the kit available for you in October at the S/C in Birmingham — all the tools necessary to take back to your respective facilities to aid in planning Histotechnology Day celebrations.

NSH and some state societies have been working to educate students about histotechnology with the Career Day program. In creating Histotechnology Day, our hope is to bring awareness of histotechnology to the public as well as practitioners of other professions in healthcare.

Sometimes you have to “toot your own horn” to be heard. March 10, 2010 will be all about us. We are very excited about Histotechnology Day. We hope that you will join our efforts in proudly celebrating histologists everywhere and all that we do!"

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