Organisation Structure

organisational-chartThe International Association of Medical Laboratory Technologists (IAMLT) was founded in 1954 in Switzerland by Ms Elizabeth Pletscher and her colleagues. For many years the office was operated from either the home or the workplace of the President. The first official office was established by Margareta Haag during her tenure as Executive Director and utilized space provided by the Swedish Society in Stockholm. The name of the organisation was changed by the GAD in 2002 to the International Federation of Biomedical Laboratory Science (IFBLS). As the result of staffing changes, the office was relocated to Hamilton, Canada that same year. The organisation was initially registered in Sweden as the IAMLT; however, in the spring of 2005 the IFBLS Board initiated the procedures to secure incorporation in Canada and in 2006 the incorporation process was completed and accepted by the office of the Minister of Industry in Canada.

The World Congress is hosted by a BLS Associate Member in partnership with IFBLS and is comprised of two parts; the Formal GAD and the Open Forum., usually on different days. It is an opportunity to stimulate professional development with an effort made to provide sessions that will meet the needs of all members including those from developing countries. Congress locations are varied to ease the travel burden.

The formal GAD/Alternate GAD is the highest authority of IFBLS and provides an opportunity for the elected Board of Directors to report to Associate Members on the Federation’s progress since the last meeting and to receive feedback from the delegates and set priorities for the future.

The Open Forum provides the opportunity to gather information and prepare reports for the GAD. Working groups debate current topics and develop strategies for future activities and inclusion in the Action Plan. The report on the group work is reported to the Board of Directors and delegates in the Formal GAD.

Board meetings are at least once every calendar year at a location determined by the Board.

The work of the Board is divided into five Committees. – The Management Committee, Awards Committee, Development Committee, Membership Committee and Scientific Committee. The President appoints Directors and members at large as well as Committee Chairpersons. The work of the committees is based on the Goals and Objectives and the bylaws and directives from the GAD that become part of the Action Plan.


IFBLS recognizes the existence of Associate members comprised of three groups: BLS Association members. Provisional BLS Association members, and Group members.

A Provisional BLS Associate member is an Association of members that has applied for and been recognized as such by the Membership Committee. Recognition is based on having a membership comprised of individuals of whom a majority are Locally Qualified Biomedical Laboratory Scientists or Students and have non-discriminatory policies, has a council or board and governs its own affairs.

A newly applied member Association will be deemed a provisional BLS Association membership until such time as approved by the Board there by becoming a BLS Associate member with all the privileges entitled to them.

Group membership is a group of individuals comprised of a minimum of 10 individuals that have applied for and been recognized by Membership Committee. Once recognized by the Board, Group members are given the privileges entitled to them including the right to seek election to the Board of Directors.

Advisory Groups

The goals and objectives of IFBLS Advisory Groups is to establish a forum of qualified and experienced Biomedical Laboratory Scientists, within the different specialties of Biomedical Science, who would be willing to share their professional expertise within IFBLS. This is done by making the work of experts in biomedical science and related fields more easily accessible for IFBLS, both for projects within the organisation, or in cooperation with other organisations; by encouraging initiative and expert work in fields that are important to the development of the profession and the organisation and by increasing professional communication between experts within the organisation.

One member of each group is appointed the Chair and will act as the contact person between the IFBLS Board and the Advisory Group and is responsible for reporting to the relevant Committee. The Chairperson duties include:

  • Interfacing with IFBLS Board on issues relevant to their Advisory Group and participate in internal and external
    projects at the request of the IFBLS Board
  • Maintain active communication within the Advisory Group.
  • Assist Congress planners for speakers for scientific programs when asked
  • Provide articles of relevant topics to be posted on the web journal/newsletter related to diagnostic analyses, education, development opportunities, quality assessment and information technology
  • Communicate activities of the Advisory Group via IFBLS web site and association newsletters

Bylaw Changes Approved by Industry Canada

The Bylaw changes that were voted on at the GAD in 2014 were submitted to Industry Canada to comply with the Canadian Not for Profit Act. These changes were approved by the Canadian government in March 2015. The most current Bylaws can be found in the IFBLS Membership tab.