Congratulations on your decision to start your career as a medical assistant!
You are entering a field that is in high demand so your chances of getting a job and becoming a medical assistant are good! According to Indeed, there are over 1.4 million medical assistant job titles!
Medical assistant training requirements vary from state to state. Please select your state below to read all the necessary training requirements to be a medical assistant so you can quickly get started.
We hope that we can help you on your journey to getting great medical assistant training.
Medical assistant’s work alongside physicians, mainly in outpatient or ambulatory care facilities, such as medical offices and clinics.
Most are employed by clinics, medical offices, hospitals or urgent care centers. The nice thing about being a medical assistant, is that jobs are in high demand.
Medical Assistant Job Description
The job description for a medical assistant can vary depending on the clinic/health care center; and typically medical assistant’s are trained in both administrative and clinical duties. With that said, most medical assistant jobs entail:
- Clinical Duties
- Drawing blood
- Collecting and preparing laboratory specimens (sputum, urine, stool, semen, etc.)
- Acquiring medical histories of patients
- Collecting patient(s) vital signs
- Collecting any necessary information from patients about their visit
- Prepping and cleaning the exam room
- Prepping patients for examinations
- Assisting the physician during exams as needed
- Giving instructions to patients about their medication(s) or dietary requirements
- Administrative Duties
- Answering telephones
- Managing patient records
- Scheduling appointments
- Handling bookkeeping responsibilities
- Greeting patients
- Filling out insurance forms
- Keeping exam rooms supplies stocked
There are more or less required duties but it varies upon the clinic and their requirements.
Medical Assistant Jobs
As previously mentioned, the demand for medical assistants is very high. As long as you meet the qualifications and have completed the proper training or certification, then you have a great chance of getting hired.
According to the Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, medical assistant jobs are projected to grow by 23% from 2014-2024, which is much faster than the national average. And hopefully with the aid of this website you can get yourself a job in the medical assistant field.
Medical Assistant Candidate Requirements
To be a medical assistant you need;
- A high school diploma (or GED), and some college preferred
- Medical assistant certification (Not required, however this is preferred)
We will explore certification below because most employers prefer you to be certified.
Medical Assistant Certification
First things first, there are no federal or state laws that require a medical assistant to be certified, however most employers do want certified medical assistants because medical liability is an ongoing issue.
But, how do you get certified? You will need to attend and graduate from a program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs or the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools.
You can find if your school is accredited below:
- Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools Directory
- Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs Directory
Medical assisting programs can take form in either 1-year programs or 2-year associate degree programs. These programs are typically offered at community colleges, vocational schools, technical schools, and junior colleges.
Course work for these programs could include things like, math fundamentals, business writing, CPR & first aid, insurance billing and coding.
There are a lot more topics, and you can check out PMI’s program outline to get an idea of what course work is included in their medical assistant degree.
How to Get your Certification
Now, onto the final step for acquiring your medical assistant certificate.
After acquiring your 1 or 2 year degree from an accredited school, you will need to study a ton in order to pass the Medical Assistant Certification Examination.
The exam is offered through the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA), and you can get more exam info by going to the AAMA website.
You can also take the certification exam through the American Medical Technologists (AMT) group as well. You can get more info on their exam by visiting the AMT website.
Does a Medical Assistant Certification matter?
Technically, no. But in reality, it does. Most employer’s prefer you to have degree, with that said you should consider pursuing a certificate.
Online Medical Assistant Training
You can do online medical assistant training, which is a great option for people who don’t have open availability to go to a in-person university.
The cost is about the same as in-person university and you do all your work from home.
Just make sure that it is a certified program.