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A look into the day to day job of a microbiologist


A microbiologist may be known as a Bacteriologist, a Chemist, or a Medical Laboratory Technician, but the duties cut across the board. If you want to have a snippet in the day to day life of a microbiologist, you came to the right place. Here is a brief description of their daily activities.

What does a microbiologist do?

A microbiologist takes a closer look at infectious diseases belonging to different patient groups. They are also involved in outbreak management and in the control of infections where the aim is to stop the rapid spread of an outbreak or infection. The workload is varied but exciting and gives you the opportunity to apply scientific knowledge and principles to solve clinical issues.

A close look at the day to day work life of a microbiologist

If it’s time for you to apply for microbiology jobs, knowing what lies ahead of you will help you prepare for work life. Generally, your day will start at 9 in the morning where the first hour is spend handing over from your colleagues and checking emails.

Also, it’s advisable to interpret and authorize clinical samples that have been processed in the lab first thing in the morning. From there, your day will involve answering calls from doctors in the hospital you work and from the community. You will also pick up salient results and look at a clinical specimen that needs to be tested.

You may also be needed in meetings with the infection control nurses, virologists and clinical scientists if you are testing the cause of an outbreak and looking for a way to control it. Meetings include the discussion of problematic cases where your expertise is required.

You may end your day in yet another meeting, but this time to discuss transplant patients. Your day will typically end at 5 pm and leave you with enough energy to enjoy your evening. However, whenever you are on call, the hospital may call on you after working hours if they need your assistance. Usually, a phone call is enough to sort things out.

Daily tasks you will need to handle

  • You will investigate the relationship between diseases and the organisms that cause the disease. This will also include the control of epidemics, and the effects antibiotics have on the organisms in question.
  • You will also provide health services to health departments, physicians in need of information for diagnosis and treatment, as well as community environmental health programs.
  • You will also use sophisticated equipment in your daily duties. This includes thermocyclers, electrophoresis units, fluorescence activated cell sorters, gas chromatographs, electron microscopes, among others.
  • You will examine cultural, physiological, and morphological characteristics and identify them in human beings, food and water. You will also classify the organisms.

Every month, you will be expected to prepare technical reports, study how the human, animal, plant, cells, pathogens, and toxins and finally conduct necessary chemical analyses of substances such as alcohol, enzymes and acids.

Now that you know how your day is likely to turn out, you can start applying for jobs and join a college that offers microbiology.

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