Are you looking for a versatile career in the health care industry that offers great job potential? Then a career as a Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) is the perfect option for you. CMAs are in high demand because they are able to perform both administrative and clinical duties in medical facilities throughout the country. Below is a closer look at what a CMA is and how to start the career path to become one.
What Does a Certified Medical Assistant Do?
A Certified Medical Assistant works in medical facilities like physician offices, hospitals, and assisted living homes, under the direct supervision of a physician or a nurse. They can handle an array of administrative duties, such as greeting patients, scheduling patient appointments, and calling prescriptions into the pharmacy. CMAs can also provide various patient-based services, such as taking and recording vital signs, updating patients’ medical history, and assisting the physician during patient examinations.
The exact duties will vary between different medical facilities, but often the CMA will act as a liaison between the physician and the patient. If you enjoy working with people of all ages and have good communication and organizational skills, a career as a Certified Medical Assistant may be right for you.
Benefits of Becoming a Certified Medical Assistant
Many states do not require medical assistants to become certified prior to working in the health care industry. However, taking the extra step to earn your certification as a medical assistant can provide more opportunities for employment and help you find a better paying job. In addition, many employers will only hire medical assistants who are certified. This may be because your certification proves your ability to perform the necessary medical assistant duties.
Training Requirements for a Certified Medical Assistant
The training and educational requirement for becoming a CMA vary from state to state. In some states, completing a medical assistant program in your state will be enough to help you earn your certification. Some states require this to be an accredited program, while other states will require you to complete a program that will award you an Associate Degree as a Medical Assistant.
These training programs will cover things you will need to know in the work place. You may learn various administrative skills, like bookkeeping, insurance billing and coding, and how to read patient files. You will also learn about basic medical procedures, how to utilize some types of medical tools and equipment, and how to draw bloodwork. Most training courses require you to complete some type of hands-on clinical training to gain some real world experience.
Other states require you to go one step further and take the medical assistant certification exam. This test will cover all the information you learned in your training program. You will only be able to take this examination after you have completed an accredited medical assistant program. Once you pass this exam, you will become a Certified Medical Assistant.
If you are considering a career as a medical assistant, it will be worth it to take the extra steps to become a Certified Medical Assistant. It will give you the ability to find higher paying jobs that offer better benefits.