Medical Assistant Responsibilities Torrington CT

How to Pick a Medical Assistant School near Torrington Connecticut

Torrington CT medical assistant checking pulseOnce you have made a decision to enter the rewarding profession of health care and enroll in a medical assistant school near Torrington CT, it’s time to choose a college that will furnish the proper training. But just how do you go about evaluating and comparing colleges so that you subsequently pick the ideal one? Many future students start by researching the medical assistant schools that are nearest to their homes and then gravitate toward those that have the lowest tuition. While cost and location are extremely important such things as accreditation, job assistance and internship programs are important issues as well. You may choose to look into some online medical assistant programs as an option as well (more about that later). The main point is that before you select a program you need to complete your due diligence and compare all important qualifications of the schools you are assessing. And to help you with that task, we have furnished several questions that you need to ask all of the schools on your “maybe” list. But prior to starting that review, let’s briefly talk about the responsibilities of a medical assistant and the type of training and credentials that are available.

The Role of a Medical Assistant

medical assistant with Torrington CT nursing home patientThe duties of a medical assistant can be varied as well as demanding. Essentially their role is to make sure that the Torrington CT hospitals, clinics and other medical care institutions where they work operate efficiently. Based on the size or type of facility, they can be more of an administrative assistant, a clinical assistant, or in smaller practices both. They are responsible for providing direct support to the nurses, doctors and other medical practitioners but may also be found working in an office or at the front desk. Some of the potential duties of a medical assistant include:

  • Completing insurance forms and filing claims
  • Setting and confirming appointments
  • Weighing and taking patients vital signs
  • Taking blood and other fluid and tissue specimens
  • Preparing instruments and rooms for physicians
  • Supplying basic support during exams and procedures

Although medical assistants can perform almost any task they are authorized to under Connecticut law, some choose to specialize in a particular area and attain certification. Two of the options offered are for the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) and the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) made available by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).

Medical Assistant Education

Unlike most other healthcare professionals, medical assistants are not required to become licensed, certified, or to have a college degree. However, many Torrington CT health care employers prefer to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training school (we’ll cover accreditation later ) that are certified. There are basically two options offered for a formal education. The first and shortest path to becoming a medical assistant is to earn a certificate or diploma. These programs generally take about 1 year to complete, some as little as six to nine months. They are created to teach the fundamentals of medical assisting and ready graduates for entry level positions. The second option is to acquire an Associate Degree, which are usually two year programs provided at junior and community colleges as well as vocational and technical schools. They are more extensive in design than the certificate or diploma programs, and include general education courses in addition to the medical assistant training. They often have a practical element involving an internship with a local healthcare practice. Associate Degrees are commonly a pre-requisite for and credits can be applied to a 4 year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a related field.

Medical Assistant Online Colleges

woman attending medical assistant school online in Torrington CTThere are a number of accredited medical assistant programs accessible online too. They are a good option for individuals who may not have the time to attend classes on campus but could fit them in if accessible at home. This is an especially good choice for students who continue working full-time while earning their degree or certificate. As an additional benefit, a number of online programs have cheaper tuitions than the more conventional on campus alternatives. Supplemental expenses including those for textbooks, commuting and school supplies might be reduced also. But bear in mind that all requirements for practical training or internships must still be fulfilled, but they can often be completed in Torrington CT area health care facilities. If you can earn a degree without the formal structure of going to supervised classes on-campus, then this mode of getting your training might be the right option for you. With the online lessons and the practical training, everything necessary to attain proficiency to perform as a medical assistant is furnished.

Certification Options for Medical Assistants

As earlier stated, certification is not a legal requirement, but is a good choice for individuals who want to advance their careers. It will not only help in obtaining employment after graduation, but it can also help with initial salary negotiations. Many potential Torrington CT medical employers simply will not hire a medical assistant that has not obtained certification or accredited formal training. One of the most popular and possibly the most highly regarded certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). To qualify to take the CMA exam, an applicant must be a graduate or will be graduating within thirty days from an accredited medical assistant program. Additional certifications are offered as well, including the CMAA and the CCMA that we discussed earlier which are provided by the NHA.

Topics to Ask Medical Assistant Schools

Questions to ask Torrington CT medical assistant programsPrior to assessing your medical assistant school options, you have to determine which type of credential you want to earn, and if you would prefer attending classes on campus or online from home. Once those choices have been made, you can start the process of researching medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, some students limit their searches to the colleges that are closest to Torrington CT with the cheapest tuition. Although location and cost are significant qualifiers, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional factors that you need to look at when evaluating programs. To assist you with that process, following are a few questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your final choice.

Is the Medical Assistant College Accredited? There are several good reasons to verify that the school you choose is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps guarantee that the education you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you intend to become certified, you must enroll in an accredited program. Two of the approved organizations for accreditation are the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). If your school is not accredited by either of these organizations, you will not be allowed to take the CMA examination. Also, if you plan on obtaining a student loan or financial aid, they are often not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as mentioned previously, a number of potential Torrington CT employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited college.

What is the School’s Passage Percentage? The majority of accredited medical assistant colleges create their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification examinations. To begin with, you need to learn which of the certifications the schools you are reviewing are preparing their students for. If you are planning on taking the CMA for instance, then naturally you will need to enroll in a program targeting that certification. Second, find out what the school’s passage rate is for the certification and contrast it to the national average. This is just one of the methods to help evaluate the quality of a school’s program. Of course programs with lower rates are those that you will want to eliminate.

Which Credentials are Provided? As we previously covered, there are generally two routes to getting medical assistant training. You can choose a diploma or certificate program and receive entry level training in the fastest amount of time, starting at just 6 months, although the average is about 1 year. Or you can elect to acquire an Associate Degree and receive a broader education that will require approximately two years to accomplish in a community college or vocational school. Whichever program you choose to enroll in, make certain that the colleges you are reviewing offer the type of program you are interested in.

Are Internships Available? Many medical assistant programs offer internship programs with Torrington CT area healthcare providers. They are an excellent means to receive hands-on clinical training and experience. They may also help students build relationships within the Torrington health care community. And as an added perk, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews as well.

Is Job Placement Support Provided? Finding that initial job can be a challenging task for medical assistant school graduates unless they have a little help from a job placement program. Verify that the colleges you are interviewing provide job placement assistance in the Torrington CT area and ask what their placement rate is. If a college has a high job placement rate for its students, it indicates that it has a good reputation within the healthcare community. It also suggests that it has a wide network of employers to help place students in positions.

How Big are the Classrooms? Class size might be an indicator of how much personal attention you will get throughout your training. Smaller classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more prone to offer increased access to teachers and one-on-one interaction. If convenient, try to attend a couple of classes before choosing a college to see what the teaching atmosphere is like and how much attention the students get.

Is Class Scheduling Accommodating? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant school while you continue working full time, it’s imperative that the college you select provides classes that accommodate your schedule. If you need to attend classes at night or on weekends near Torrington CT, make sure that those times are available. You might be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online college, but you will also have to schedule any clinical training or internships that might be required. Additionally, find out what the protocol is for making up classes that you might have to miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.

Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Torrington Connecticut?

If you are considering attending a medical assistant school in the Torrington CT area, following is some background information that may be both interesting and useful regarding your future campus location.

Torrington, Connecticut

Torrington is the largest city in Litchfield County, Connecticut and the Northwest Hills region. It is also the core city of Greater Torrington, the largest micropolitan area in the United States.[2] The city population was 36,383 according to the 2010 census.

Torrington is a former mill town, as are most other towns along the Naugatuck River Valley. Downtown Torrington is home to the Nutmeg Conservatory for the Arts, which trains ballet dancers and whose Company performs in the Warner Theatre, a 1,700 seat auditorium built in 1931 as a cinema by the Warner Brothers film studio. Downtown Torrington also hosts the largest Lodge of Elks in New England. Elks Lodge #372 supports many community activities and events.

There was a University of Connecticut regional campus in Torrington. It closed in May 2016 due to low enrollment [3] The 100-acre campus is located in a quiet rural setting on the western outskirts of the city, and consists of the M. Adela Eads Classroom Building and the Litchfield County Cooperative Extension Service Building.

Choose the Best Medical Assistant School Torrington CT

Torrington CT medical assistant studentIt’s important to begin your new career on the right foot by selecting a medical assistant school that will provide the right training. Whether you’re planning to begin a career in medical care starting out as a medical assistant or to practice medical assistance as your life long career, you must acquire the appropriate information on available programs before making your decision. There are so many colleges providing training these days that you can make a selection based upon your individual circumstances and personal preferences. And as we have discussed in this article, make certain that the program you decide on is accredited by an acknowledged organization, such as the CAAHEP. This is especially critical if you anticipate taking the CMA certification examination. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Medical Assistant Responsibilities. But irrespective of the type of credential that you intend to earn or if you have made a decision to attend either an online or on-campus school, be sure to ask the questions we have supplied in order to evaluate programs and make an informed decision. And by selecting the best program you can subsequently begin a gratifying career as a medical assistant in Torrington CT.

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