Histopathology Technician

  • Location: Bethesda, Maryland
  • Type: Direct Hire
  • Job #34400


National Institutes of Health (NIH)

National Cancer Institute (NCI)

Center for Cancer Research (CCR)

Laboratory of Pathology (LP)

Histopathology Section



  • Provide support for the Histopathology Laboratory, in support of the Surgical and Molecular Pathology sections.
  • Responsible for accessioning and processing patient pathology material to include order forms, reports, slides, and paraffin blocks.  Accurately accounts for and accession submitted material.
  • Accessions fresh tissue samples collected from NIH clinics, nursing units, and Operating Room; ensuring accuracy of patient identification matching samples with orders. Enters patient cases into Laboratory Information System (LIS), labels samples with LIS barcoded labels, and distributes samples and requisitions to the Pathologists Assistant, Clinical Fellows, or Histopathology technician.
  • Process human specimens received in the Laboratory – and the associated documentation – and computer orders before accessioning to make sure that necessary elements are present for the acceptance of the specimen.
  • Selects appropriate histology techniques for preparing the patient samples according to the quality and quantity of the specimen and the patient's clinical information.
  • Labels forms and specimen containers with the assigned surgical pathology number, selects the correct processing protocol for each case and prepares the necessary number of cassettes with the patient identification number to assist the pathologist with grossing and processing of tissue specimens.
  • Performs tissue processing using the automatic tissue processing system.
  • Performs routine maintenance of tissue processors and troubleshoots machine problems when necessary.
  • Uses tissue embedding centers to embed human tissue sections according to the established procedure which requires experience with the embedding center components, proper type of paraffin for processing and embedding and well as troubleshooting problems.
  • Performs routine H&E and histologic special staining manually or with automatic stainer.
  • Operates and troubleshoots stainers.
  • Performs quality control of stained tissues and instruments.
  • Performs both manually and automatic cover slipping techniques performs both simple and highly complex special stains to demonstrate different type of tissue structures, micro-organisms, and minerals according to the special stains procedure manual.
  • Assist staff with other clinical support tasks as necessary.



  • Preferred: Certification as a Histotechnician (HT) or Histopathology Technologist (HTL) from ASCP
  • Acceptable: completed necessary education to be eligible to for HT ASCP certification
  • Minimum of two years of experience cutting and embedding small biopsies
  • Broad comprehensive, practical knowledge, of the theories which underlie biology, chemistry, physiology and human anatomy as they relate to basic pathology and experience in the field of Histotechnology.
  • Knowledge of federal privacy laws and/or patient privacy laws to ensure confidentiality of patient information.
  • Strong communication skills, both oral and written.
  • Excellent organizational and time management skills.



The world famous “Building 10” on NIH’s main campus in Bethesda, MD


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