If you are an efficient multitasker who works well in a fast-paced environment, have organizational skills, the ability to interact well with others, keep accurate records, meticulous charting and collect specimens without crumbling under the stress then the career of medical assistant is for you.
Medical assistant training comes in many forms—from formal vocational training programs, to self-study programs provided over the Internet and some are hired into positions where they are trained directly on the job without prior medical office procedures experience.
As an alternative, there also are highly reputable distance education programs for aspiring medical assistants—as long as these programs are accredited by ABHES, CAAHEP, or the US Department of Education, these too, can lead to desired diplomas upon one can build a solid career.
Vocational training can last somewhere between nine months to two years from start to finish, depending on the program and type of school. You will attain academic and clinical training in a variety of areas, including…
- human anatomy, physiology and pathology
- medical terminology
- keyboarding and computer applications
- record keeping, accounting
- medical coding and insurance processing
- general laboratory techniques
- clinical and diagnostic procedures
- basic pharmacology
- medication administration
- medical office practices
- patient relations/customer services
- general medical law and ethics
- phlebotomy and basics in EKG
- First aid/CPR certification
Medical assistants often land better paying positions by earning healthcare specialty focus certificates or limited licenses that make them eligible to work in a specific medical specialty practice, biomedical research facility, or clinical laboratory. Community colleges offer programs that focus entirely on medical specialties and related skills, such as massage therapy, holistic health care, fitness, rehabilitation, phlebotomy, EKG/ECG, radiography (limited x-ray), sonography, ultrasound and chiropractic technician courses. Others offer Associates in Science degrees for those who intend to continue their studies beyond a medical assisting diploma and eventually go into nursing and various other highly specialized technical fields and medical sciences.
- Health Information Technology
- Radiologic Technology
- Sonography and Ultrasound
- Surgical Technology
- Laboratory sciences
- Medical Office Administration and Management,
- Medical records, Health Information Management
- Pharmaceutical sciences
Those interested in environmental sciences, chemistry and biology can enroll into Arts and Science Degree programs offered through state and community colleges and universities; these programs lead to a major in environmental biology and forestry, or concentrations in such areas as botany, entomology, fish and wildlife biology, forest pathology, plant physiology, zoology, environmental chemistry, or veterinary degrees for animal lovers, which all are careers of the future with excellent occupational future outlook.
The possibilities are endless.