A Certified Medical Assistant or Medical Assistant helps the physicians and nurses with different medical and administrative tasks. Many people are opting for medical assistant jobs these days as their career choice because of its versatility, demand and attractive salaries. To add to that, there are different types of medical assistant jobs which make it even more wonderful career choice.
Medical assistant job description:
A medical assistant is expected to do a variety of tasks which include taking checking patients, vital signals, medical record keeping such as updating and filing charts, helping in medical billing and insurance coding etc.
Medical Assistants are expected to work for minimum of 40 hours in a week, Monday through Friday. However, medical assistants are also expected to be flexible about their working hours as they might have to work during nights and weekends unless there is a separate weekend and night working staff.
Pros and Cons in medical assistant jobs:
Pros: Medical assistants are trained in both administrative and clinical tasks which makes it the most versatile professional job. Medical assistants are trained in different tasks related to medical office. As they are not limited to particular medical specialty, they will have lot of opportunities in different medical offices.
Cons: Though medicals assistants will have lot of opportunities, medical assisting is not among most well paid allied health care professions. It is not a great career path. Vertical movement in the job is limited unless you are willing to go for higher education related to medical field.
Courses offered for Medical Assistant:
Aspiring medical assistants can choose between two educational programs. You can complete a two year associate’s degree or choose one year certification course from a recognized school. The medical associates will be trained about medical terminology, medical billing, first aid etc.
Certification for medical assistants:
After completing the course, the medical assistants can apply for certification exam to become CMA (Certified Medical Assistant). This exam is conducted by American Association for Medical Assistants. American Association for medical assistants will conduct the certification exam thrice in a year. This certification has to be renewed every five years. Though some employers do not insist on certification, but CMA’s will typically have more jobs than normal medical assistants.
Demand for medical assistant job is growing day by day. Employment of medical assistants is expected to grow by more than 30 percent marking the medical assistants as the fastest growing occupation over the decade of 2008 to 2018. This growth is very much high when compared to average of all the occupations.
With the drastic growth of population in almost all the developing and developed countries, there is a great need of health centers. So the increase in the number of clinics, hospitals and other health care facilities has simultaneously increased the number of job opportunities for medical assistants.
Though the salaries typically depend upon the employer, medical assistants can normally expect an annual income of somewhere between USD 22,000 to USD 32,000.