Oregon Health & Science University

Specimen Processing Specialist 1 - Relief

Job Locations US-OR-Portland
Requisition ID
Position Category
Position Type
Job Type
AFSCME union represented
Pathology Lab Services
Salary Range
$20.02 - $27.10 per hour
HR Mission
Drug Testable

Department Overview

Come work at Oregon's #1 ranked hospital!

OHSU is more than Oregon's only comprehensive academic health center. It’s an entire community of people dedicated to a single cause. Each of us are here to improve the health and well-being of people in Oregon, and beyond. Our core values of quality, service, transparency and diversity are essential in what we do, but ultimately important because of why we are here. We are here to serve. We are here to innovate. We are here to lead. We are looking forward to the dynamic impact you will make by joining OHSU.


The purpose of this position is to provide technical support for patient care activities in the laboratory by performing data entry, billing, client services, sample processing, resulting, filing, and laboratory procedures.  The major duty is to prepare patient specimens for laboratory testing, which includes determining specimen acceptability, answering telephone inquiries, and multi-tasking while working quickly and accurately. The successful candidate will be of professional demeanor and perform their duties with an attitude which will best serve the clients of the department, OHSU, and outside the organization

Function/Duties of Position

-Specimen receipt and processing:

  • Loads specimens onto automation line for processing
  • Centrifuges samples and transfers to appropriately labeled containers
  • Accurately measures specimens, records volumes, and determines if sample quality and quantity sufficient for testing
  • Directs samples to technologists and testing areas either manually or using the automation lines, or stores samples for future testing.
  • Makes slides for staining
  • Notifies technologists or appropriate lab when priority work is received
  • Determines acceptability of specimens received and calls ward of physician to clarify orders or advise of unacceptable samples.

-Performs data entry for samples received for testing:

  • Checks accuracy of specimens, requisitions, labels
  • Performs computer entry in Epic HIS system
  • Handles and processes samples for many labs on and off campus
  • Accurately labels samples, requisitions, and appropriate specimen containers
  • Is responsible to see that all samples are logged in to the lab and triaged in a timely manner

-Coordinates and prepares samples to be shipped to outside labs for patient care and drug study testing

  • Enters test requests into dedicated referral lab computer
  • Fills out paperwork carefully and thoroughly to ensure accurate testing
  • Packs infectious shipping samples per IATA standards
  • Utilizes electronic systems provided by referral labs orders to transmit

-Trains new employees

-Performs client services duties:

  • Tracks missing specimens and resolves discrepancies quickly and professionally
  • Answers multi-line telephone, and provides a pleasant and professional telephone manner as frontline representative of the laboratory
  • Assists needs of callers in all aspects of laboratory operations
  • Transfers or refers calls or confers with other areas of lab or hospital as needed
  • Performs QC and instrument maintenance and documents results in Epic.

-Other Duties:

  • Assists with miscellaneous tasks as requested, such as retrieving specimens, making phone calls, issuing credits, filing requisitions, etc.
  • Reports potential compliance problems using the reporting processes as outlined in the
  • Code of Conduct.
  • Completes competency exercises, annual review of policy & procedure manuals and safety review.
  • Attends and participates in training programs and staff meetings.
  • Ability to work independently within established guidelines, to adjust to rapidly changing priorities, to communicate and work effectively within a group.
  • Performs requirements for Staff Members as outlined in Compliance Roles and Responsibilities in OHSU Hospitals and Clinics and understands and complies with the Code of Conduct, OHSU and departmental policies and procedures, and other applicable procedures, rules and regulations.
  • Communicates and works effectively as part of a team, and interacts with a variety of clients including doctors, nurses, laboratory staff and patients, maintaining a customer service focus at all times.
  • Carries out job responsibilities ethically, professionally, and with personal integrity, and functions as part of the team exhibiting excellent communication, teamwork and customer service skills.

Required Qualifications

  • High school diploma and at least two years of college lab science courses, plus one year of college math or computer courses; OR
  • High school diploma and two years of clinical lab experience; OR
  • High school diploma and successful completion of a Lab Assistant Training program including clinical lab experience.
  • Must be able to perform the essential functions of the position with or without accommodation

Preferred Qualifications

  • Two years in a clinical laboratory including sample receipt, sample processing, customer service, multi-line phone use.
  • Training or experience demonstrating:
    • knowledge of basic laboratory techniques
    • knowledge of laboratory terminology, equipment, and materials knowledge of basic math
    • ability to follow formulas accurately
    • ability to handle, package, and store laboratory specimens and materials
    • ability to operate and maintain standard laboratory equipment
    • ability to learn routine testing methods, procedures, and techniques ability to keep accurate records in conformance with laboratory procedures
    • ability to follow written and verbal procedures (instructions).
  • Training or experience demonstrating proficiency with healthcare/lab information systems.

Additional Details

Positions in the laboratory and environments may require working flexible schedules including nights, weekends and holidays; working at multiple laboratory or hospital sites; traveling between laboratories and sites by stairs, elevator, tram, shuttle or other means; exposure to blood and body fluids, chemical hazards, radiation; working in a somewhat noisy and crowded environment; wearing gloves and other Personal Protective Equipment for long periods of time; experiencing occasional temperature fluctuations in buildings.

All are welcome

Oregon Health & Science University values a diverse and culturally competent workforce. We are proud of our commitment to being an equal opportunity, affirmative action organization that does not discriminate against applicants on the basis of any protected class status, including disability status and protected veteran status. Individuals with diverse backgrounds and those who promote diversity and a culture of inclusion are encouraged to apply. To request reasonable accommodation contact the Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Department at 503-494-5148 or aaeo@ohsu.edu.

As an organization devoted to the health and well-being of people in Oregon and beyond, OHSU requires its employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.


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