CLIA waived Tests

“Laboratory testing is instrumental in our system of care providing physicians with actionable data to diagnose and treat patients. Unfortunately, the current shortage in the clinical laboratory workforce has reached a breaking point. It will take everyone working together to reverse the current trajectory.”

– Kathy Nucifora, MPH, MT(ASCP), Chief Operating Officer, COLA

Workforce Action Alliance Summit

The 2023 Workforce Action Alliance Summit

The Laboratory Workforce Shortage Challenge

The inaugural Summit of the Workforce Action Alliance (WAA) was held on May 2, 2023, in Fort Worth, Texas.  After a highly productive review of the current state of the laboratory workforce shortage and sharing of some exemplary innovations to address the crisis, the Executive-level group went to work.  After considerable discussions and the generation of ideas, the WAA identified 3 actionable goals for the year.  The group concluded that in order to accomplish those goals, we will all need to work together.  The 3 goals are: 

#1 Strengthen the data to understand the laboratory workforce 

#2 Communicate career pathways for new and transitioning professionals 

#3 Standardize professional titles 

During the WAA Summit, the group outlined action plans for each goal and several Executives volunteered to refine those action plans with practical steps, a timeline and metrics of success.  The revised plans will be presented to the entire group in August when the group will organize to implement those plans.  

Additionally, a document titled “Proceedings” is currently being drafted, and it will be made accessible to anyone interested. 

Contact COLA at to learn more about the WAA or to make a charitable donation in support of the 2024 Summit, which will be held May 7, 2024, in Fort Walton Beach, Florida.   

Members of the Planning Committee for Summit

Kathy Nucifora

Chair, COO for COLA


Mark Birenbaum

Administrator, National Independent Laboratory Association & American Association for Bio Analysts


Kelly Winter

Chief of Training & Workforce Development Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


Amy L. Leber

Director, Clinical Microbiology & Immunoserology Nationwide Children’s Hospital, representing American Society for Microbiology

Ph.d, D(ABMM)

Melanie Sloan

Senior Director Accreditation and Quality

Association for the Advancement of Blood and Biotherapies


Edna Garcia

Senior Director, Scientific Engagement & Research, American Society for Clinical Pathology


Jim Flanigan

CAE, EVP, American Society for Clinical Laboratory Science

Christine Bean

Chief Learning Officer, Association of Public Health Laboratories


Michelle Bell

Clinical Pathology Support Manager, Clinical Pathology Associates, Buda, TX

Representing the National Society for Histotechnology

Michelle Bell, HT (ASCP), QIHCcm

COLA will also host its annual Laboratory Enrichment Forum May 7-9, 2024, in Fort Walton Beach, Florida.