Goals and Objectives

During training, each Resident will master the following skills:

    Patient Care
    To be able to provide advice to clinicians about appropriate specimens for different types of nucleic acid-based diagnostic tests, and to communicate urgency of certain samples to the laboratory staff.

    Know the test of choice for the identification of specific viral diseases, including viral isolation, detection of viral antigens, detection of genomic nucleic acid, or viral serology.

    Know the fundamentals of testing for human immunodeficiency virus, and to be able to correlate the results with the stage of the patient's disease and treatment.

    Know current protocols and recommendations for testing cervical cytology specimens for human papilloma virus, including interpretation of tests.

    Learn current tests available for the detection of syphilis, including the ability to correlate test results with disease stage.

    Medical Knowledge
    Understand the physical and chemical methods used for the purification, analysis and detection of nucleic acids.

    Know the molecular structures, biological functions and physicochemical properties of nucleic acids that are relevant to modern methods of nucleic acid analysis of clinical specimens

    Know the catalytic activities of enzymes used for the analysis of nucleic acid specimens including amplification of specific nucleic acid sequences.

    Know the theory and specific uses of methods for the analysis and detection of RNA or DNA for the diagnosis of infectious diseases.

    Know the cytopathic effects in tissue culture of the most common viral isolates.

    Know the advantage and disadvantage of antigen test and the sensitivity and specificity of each test.

    Understand the significant of each viral serology test.

    Understand and interpret the panel EBV test.

    Understand the different test methods and their usage.

    Know the biology of hepatitis viruses.

    Know the choice for hepatitis A virus and why.

    Know how to test for hepatitis B and how to interpret the results of the test panel.

    Know how to test for hepatitis C and the window period for different test.

    Know the biology of human papilloma virus

    Know the properties of certain new emerging viruses and suspected viral diseases.

    Know the fundamentals of specimen collection, processing and preparation for virus isolation.

    Know the general principle of virus life cycle.

    Practice Based Learning and Improvement
    Understand the use of quality assurance and control in the molecular diagnostics laboratory

    Understand laboratory safety, including how to properly inactivate various common viruses.

    Interpersonal and Communication Skills
    To effectively communicate with clinicians about the test results with appropriate interpretation.

    Systems-Based Practice
    Know the available antiviral therapy and mechanism of action.

    Understand concepts of laboratory design and procedure that are specific to nucleic acid testing.

    Understand regulatory issues relevant to nucleic acid testing of patient specimens.


The rotation in diagnostic virology, viral serology and molecular diagnostics lasts one month.

Duties and Responsibilities of Residents by Year

Because the core curriculum is taught at one point in the Resident's training, responsibilities do not change on a yearly basis.

Residents will spend time at each laboratory bench in order to learn proper techniques for identification of viral pathogens by culture, serology, or detection of viral antigens.

Residents will process a given unknown specimen for identification, and will review their diagnosis with members of the virology laboratory staff.

Residents will sign out all positive or suspected positive tests with the Attending Pathologist.

Teaching Staff

Yung Huang, PhD - Director of Virology Rotation

Scott Hite, MT, MS, ASCP

Debbi Briggs, MT, ASCP

Supervision and Evaluation

Residents meet on a regular basis with the Attending Pathologist and with the lead technologists for supervision.

Residents are evaluated on a monthly basis with regard to acquisition of the Core Competencies listed in this Program Statement. Evaluations are forwarded to the Residency Program Director, where they are available for review.