Medical assistant – Successful careers in the field of medicine

With a boom in the healthcare industry and stricter regulations in place, there is an increasing demand for Medical Assistants (MA) or Certified Medical Assistant (CMA). According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, medical assistants (MAs) and medical assisting careers are expected to increase by 29% through 2022, an astounding figure indeed!

Who is a Medical Assistant?

These are the professionals who function as a part of the health care delivery team and perform administrative duties like scheduling appointments, maintaining medical records, patient billing, and coding information for insurance purposes. They are also required to record medical history of patients and to do a first-hand analysis of the symptoms. Furthermore, they are the ones responsible for conducting blood tests, preparing patients’ medical charts, getting them ready for surgical procedures and to administer dosage for the patients.

America’s best Medical Assistant Programs:

Experience the Rewards of Caring, With ECPI’s Medical Careers Institute, you can Earn Your Bachelor’s Degree in 2.5 Years or Your Associate’s Even Sooner through Our Year-Round Schedule!

Programs:

  • Medical Assisting - Associate
  • Dental Assisting - Associate
  • Practical Nursing - Diploma
Locations: HenricoRichmond
Don't wait another day to take the next step forward in your career. Kaplan University can give you the real-world knowledge and skills you need to succeed in your chosen field.

Programs:

    Locations: Hagerstown
    The ITT Technical Institutes offer programs in some of today's hottest technical areas. With over 100 locations nationwide and several online programs available, the ITT Techs are one of the leading providers of technology education. Each ITT Tech offers convenient class schedules and Career Services are offered to help you find a job.

    Programs:

    • AS - Medical Assisting and Administration

    Give your career a boost with an education from Bryant and Stratton College. We offer certificate, associate degree, and bachelor's degree programs for careers in the business, criminal justice, design, finance, technology, health care, and legal fields.

    For more information about Bryant and Stratton’s graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed the program, and other important information, please visit our website at www.bryantstratton.edu/disclosures.

    Programs:

    • Medical Assisting-AAS
    • Medical Administrative Assistant-AAS
    Locations: Hampton
    Animal Behavior College offers affordable, flexible programs for busy professionals interested in animal careers. We offer hands-on experience in over 400 locations nationwide.

    Programs:

    • Veterinary Assistant

    Virginia College  continues the tradition ofgiving lives new direction, fulfilling our mission statement tostudents wherever they live and offering the chance to pursue adegree while maintaining commitments to work and family.

    Programs:

    • AS - Medical Office Administration

    Fortis Institute can give you the skills you need to train for a career in the healthcare field.

    * Programs vary by location

    * Please contact each individual campus for accreditation information

    Programs:

    • Dental Assistant - Diploma
    • Dental Assistant
    • Practical Nursing
    Locations: Richmond
    Considering a new career or need additional job training? Whether you want to train for a new career, advance within your current company, or simply learn new skills to stay competitive in today's job market, Allied's distance education training can help! Because the courses are offered online and through traditional distance education, the stress associated with driving to and attending a live class is eliminated. Start your new career training today, start it with Allied Schools.

    Programs:

    • Pharmacy Technician Program
    • Medical Coding

    Pioneering distance education since 1985, Liberty University is now the nation’s seventh largest university. With more than 300 online and residential areas of study, Liberty offers programs from the certificate to doctoral level.

    Programs:

    • AA: Medical Office Assistance
    • MA Human Services: Health & Wellness
    Locations: Lynchburg

    Designed with the needs of working adult students in mind, South University, Online Programs is built on the similar curriculum offered at South University's campus locations. As a student at South University, Online Programs you will receive the same quality instruction, variety of learning options and level of service found at the campus locations.

    Programs:

    • Allied Health Science (AS)
    • Specialization in Nurse Educator (MSN)

    Schools by State:

    Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California
    Colorado Connecticut Delware Florida Georgia
    Hawaii Idaho Illinois Kansas Kentucky
    Louisiana Maine Maryland Massachusetts Michigan
    Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska
    Nevada New Hampshire New Jersey New Mexico New York
    North Carolina North Dakota Ohio Oklahoma Oregon
    Pennsylvania South Dakota Rhode Island South Carolina Iowa
    Tennessee Indiana Texas Utah Vermont
    Virginia Washington West Virginia Wisconsin Wyoming

    Education

    To become a certified Medical Assistant, a person can either attend a one-year course that a lot of schools across the United States offer or they can attend a two-year associate’s degree course. Students are trained on medical terminologies, basic math skills, billing procedures and first aid among the most important part of their studies. They are also trained to carry out the administrative duties that would be required of them.

    Program Fees

    Depending on the course duration, the average price of a class ranges from $1,200 to $4,200 dollars. Training programs usually includes theory classes and an externship; this may alter the program cost. Externship may or may not be provided by the college in which case students are required to arrange for them using their own means. For cost effective programs, students can look up the community colleges that offer the same courses at a much economical fees. However, the quality of education differs and hence students need to take a thoroughly thought step.

    The cost of supplies, books and accommodation (for out of city students) also needs to be catered for. An extra $125 or $250 to take up the Certified Medical Assistant examination needs to be considered, depending on whether a person is a recent grad and/or a member of the AAMA.

    Certification

    Owing to the changing scene of the healthcare industry in the U.S, a certification in Medical Assistant field is considered mandatory by almost all the employers. Considering the surge in litigations in the healthcare industry, health care providers rather that the personnel obtain the ”Certified Medical Assistant” credential that is awarded by American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). Add to this, the requirement of managed care organizations (MCOs) for certified personnel given the cost limitations imposed by them during mergers and acquisitions with small scale physician practices. The Government itself has also laid down stricter regulations for professionals to be certified via the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) and the Clinical Laboratory Improvements Act (CLIA)

    Hence, although not mandatory yet to be a CMA, job options are definitely better for certified personnel as compared to the ones not certified.

    After successfully completing their education programs, Medical Assistants can take up the  ”Certified Medical Assistant” exam that is conducted thrice a year by American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). The certification needs to be renewed every five years.

    Work Profile

    As already discussed above, Medical Assistants perform clinical as well as administrative tasks. They are required to work a minimum of 40 hours per week and schedules may vary depending on whether the medical offices are open at nights and on weekends. Overtime may be necessary given the operational requirement and availability of staff.

    Pros

    Healthcare industry is a recession-immune one and hence job opportunities can never cease. In fact, there has been a boost in the opportunities over the last few years. Hence, stability and job security are assured. Further, professionals can explore more areas of expertise by choosing careers in nursing and medicine (as a doctor).

    If one is keen to learn more and to keep on learning, then this field is definitely a good choice. Also, for people inclined towards making a difference to the society, will find their job profile particularly alluring and enriching.

    Cons

    A vertical growth is somewhat restricted, assured only on obtaining higher education since it would require more advanced skills.

    Remuneration of a Medical Assistant

    The average salary is benchmarked at $30,000 annually according to a survey conducted by AMA website. Additional perks like medical insurance may be offered by some medical institutions.

    Apply today!