Microbiologist II

Texas Health & Human Services Commission Austin , TX 78719

Posted 2 months ago

Under moderate supervision of the Advanced Molecular Microbiology Group Manager and the Clinical Bacteriology Team Lead and following standard protocols, performs moderately complex and highly complex microbiological work for the isolation and identification of pathogenic bacteria from both referred cultures and clinical specimens using a battery of laboratory tests. Performs quality control and preventive maintenance for the Advanced Molecular Microbiology Group.

Duties are performed with adherence to standard protocol, but with significant use of initiative, scientific knowledge and independent judgment. Safe operation of either a state-owned vehicle or personal vehicle is required to conduct state business and an acceptable driving record must be maintained in accordance with DSHS Policy OS-3901, Fleet Operations and Management & Procedures and standards developed by the Texas Department of Public Safety.

Essential Job Functions:

Attends work on a regular and predictable schedule in accordance with agency leave policy and performs other duties as assigned.

EJF 1. Under technical guidance of the Team Lead, performs moderately complex and highly complex procedures for the isolation and identification of bacteria from both referred cultures and clinical specimens.

Performs bacterial isolation procedures to obtain a pure culture on referred cultures for confirmation and identification using standard protocols. Inoculates pure culture isolates to a battery of tests; reads, interprets and records test results. Performs antimicrobial susceptibility testing.

Completes the testing process, accurately records all test reactions, and confirms the identification of the organism by interpretation of appropriate identification keys. Recognizes problems or deviations and refers to supervisor or team lead. Initiates troubleshooting and proposes solutions to problems to supervisor. Participates in proficiency testing program and demonstrates proficiency in testing work. (40%).

EJF 2. Performs quality control.

Routinely prepares and evaluates the quality of reagents used in tests by tracking expiration dates, performing required quality control, and documentation of quality control results. Initiates quality assurance corrective action; Documents technical performance issues. Identifies any aberrant Quality Control results, performs troubleshooting, and makes recommendations to Team Lead for corrective actions. Assists Team Lead with preparation of Quality Assurance documents including data graphs, problem and corrective action logs, competency documentation, training documentation, review of quality control records, and turnaround time statistical analysis. (10%).

EJF 3. Evaluates test results and assures accuracy and completeness.

Enters test results into laboratory information system for reporting. Identifies abnormal results and refers to Team Lead. Files completed reports according to standard protocol. Releases uncomplicated results based on SOP's including reviewing, entering, and validating test results in the laboratory information system (Labware) for final reporting. (10%).

EJF 4. Ensures that there is an adequate supply of reagents and miscellaneous supplies and assists in supporting the Advanced Molecular Microbiology Group in maintaining an adequate supply of media and supplies. Reviews on a monthly basis the expiration dates of reagents and places requests for reagents when supply is below desired level. Reviews supplies for completeness of information and coordinates semi-annual SAO inventory. (10%)

EJF 5. Performs preventative maintenance.

Performs advanced troubleshooting on instruments. Recognizes problems and deviations and refers to supervisor with recommendations for problem solving. Assists Team Lead with revisions of preventive maintenance records, equipment standard operating procedures, and corrective action documentation. (10%).

EJF 6. Participates in cross-training program by teaching or demonstrating laboratory techniques in accordance with standard operating procedures.

Documents all training and delivers to Manager within 10 days of completion. Participates in training program by reading procedures, listening, taking notes, and asking questions. Takes responsibility for ensuring that the knowledge and skills demonstrated are clearly understood and competency can be demonstrated. (10%).

EJF 7. Assists with verification or validation studies of new products or techniques. Assists in development and revision of procedural manuals. Assists with special projects or surge capacity testing. Under technical guidance of the Team Lead, provides data for project updates. Compiles data in spreadsheet or word processing format for presentations. (5%)

EJF 8. Assists other staff in their duties and provides additional support with special projects to maintain the section's high quality and productivity. Participates in the weekend and holiday rotations. Attends meetings, interacts and communicates with customers when applicable. Attends and/or participates in work related workshops, seminars and other training activities. Answers routine customer inquiries according to SOP's and some non-routine inquiries as directed by supervisor. Interacts with other programs as requested. Based on your work area, consistently comply with DSHS Laboratory, local, state and federal guidelines to ensure a safe functioning laboratory. Other duties as assigned include but are not limited to actively participating and/or serving in a supporting role to meet the agency's obligations for disaster response and/or recovery or continuity of operations (COOP) activation. Such participation may require an alternate shift pattern assignment and/or location. (5%)

Knowledge Skills Abilities:

Comprehensive knowledge of diagnostic and public health bacteriology, including the use of identification keys and biochemical tests to accurately identify bacteria representing the entire spectrum of the pathogenic organisms. Knowledge and experience of advanced bacteria identification techniques such as MALDI-TOF.

Detailed knowledge of the expected reactions of most bacterial culture media with known quality control organisms. Detailed knowledge of the nucleic acid hybridization probe technology for bacterial identification directly from clinical material. Ability to use identification keys for bacterial identification; determine the cause of adverse abnormal reactions in bacterial culture media.

Ability to perform antimicrobial susceptibility testing. Ability to use a computer for word processing, spreadsheet and database analysis, and results reporting. Ability to communicate effectively orally and in writing; follow written and verbal instructions; teach bacteriological procedures and use of various items of laboratory equipment.

Ability to effectively communicate technical instructions, ability to work independently and make technical decisions based on professional knowledge and experience. Skill in manipulating standard laboratory equipment with speed, accuracy and safety. Cannot be color blind. Registration or Licensure


Have an earned bachelor's, master's, or doctoral degree in a chemical, physical, biological or clinical laboratory science or medical technology from an accredited institution; or

Experience and education may be substituted as defined by the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments of 1988 (CLIA '88) Standards.

Must possess a valid Class C Texas driver's license, or equivalent license from another state

Initial Selection Criteria:

Education as described above.

Knowledge of clinical bacteriology.

Laboratory experience in clinical bacteriology.

Experience with antimicrobial susceptibility testing, desired but not required.

Experience with using MALDI-TOF for bacteria identification, desired but not required.

Additional Information:

Note: Military occupation(s) that relate to the initial selection criteria and registration or licensure requirements for this position may include: 67B, 71A, 230X, 43TX. For more information see the Texas State Auditor's Military Crosswalk at http://www.hr.sao.state.tx.us/Compensation/JobDescriptions.aspx.

Applicant is required to list all college level biology, microbiology, chemistry and other science courses on application or a separate sheet showing the course name and number of semester hours (copy of college transcript is acceptable). Applicant may fax list of completed coursework as described above to AccessHR at 1-866-245-3646. Please note Requisition number on all faxed information.

If the selected applicant has not been previously retired from state employment under the Employees Retirement System of Texas (ERS), he or she will receive at least 2.5 percent above the posted minimum salary rate.

Applicants with diplomas awarded in countries other than the U.S. must contact Laboratory Personnel Services (512-776-7318) for an approved list of credentialing agencies and must provide credentialing agency foreign transcripts assessment report with this application.

In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), HHS agencies will provide reasonable accommodation during the hiring and selection process for qualified individuals with a disability. If you need assistance completing the on-line application, contact the AccessHR service center at 1-888-894-4747. If you are contacted for an interview and need accommodation to participate in the interview process, please notify the person scheduling the interview

MOS Code:

67B, 71A, 230X, 43TX

HHS agencies use E-Verify. You must bring your I-9 documentation with you on your first day of work.

I-9 Form - Click here to download the I-9 form.

In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), HHS agencies will provide reasonable accommodation during the hiring and selection process for qualified individuals with a disability. If you need assistance completing the on-line application, contact the HHS Employee Service Center at 1-888-894-4747. If you are contacted for an interview and need accommodation to participate in the interview process, please notify the person scheduling the interview.

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Microbiologist II

Texas Health & Human Services Commission