How to Enroll In a Medical Assistant Training School near Auburn Georgia
Now that you have decided to join the rewarding profession of healthcare and enroll in a medical assistant school near Auburn GA, it’s time to choose a school that will furnish the proper training. But just how do you undertake evaluating and comparing schools so that you subsequently enroll in the best one? Many future students begin by evaluating the medical assistant schools that are closest to their residences and then lean toward those that have the cheapest tuition. While location and cost are extremely important such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are critical factors as well. You might decide to research a few online medical assistant programs as an alternative also (more about that later). The bottom line is that prior to selecting a program you must finish your due diligence and compare all relevant qualifications of the colleges you are examining. And to assist you with that process, we have provided a few 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 credentials and training that are offered.
The Duties of a Medical Assistant
The role of a medical assistant can be diverse as well as demanding. Essentially their function is ensure that the Auburn GA clinics, hospitals and other medical care institutions where they work run successfully. Based on the size or type of facility, they can be more of a clinical assistant, an administrative assistant, or in smaller practices both. They are tasked with providing direct support to the physicians, nurses and other medical practitioners but can also be found performing duties in an office or at the front desk. Some of the many responsibilities of a medical assistant include:
- Completing insurance forms and filing claims
- Scheduling and verifying appointments
- Weighing and taking patients vital signs
- Taking blood and other tissue and fluid samples
- Preparing rooms and instruments for physicians
- Giving basic support during examinations and procedures
Although medical assistants can carry out almost any task they are qualified to under Georgia law, some elect to specialize in a specific area and obtain certification. Two of the choices available are for the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) and the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) provided by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
Medical Assistant Courses
In contrast to most other healthcare practitioners, medical assistants are not required to become licensed, certified, or to earn a college degree. However, many Auburn GA health care employers prefer to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training school (more on accreditation later ) that are certified. There are generally 2 choices available for a formal education. The first and shortest path to becoming a medical assistant is to acquire a diploma or a certificate. These programs usually take about one year to complete, a few as little as 6 to 9 months. They are designed to teach the fundamentals of medical assisting and prepare graduates for entry level positions. The second option is to obtain an Associate Degree, which are usually two year programs offered at community and junior colleges in addition to technical and vocational schools. They are more extensive in nature than the diploma or certificate programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant classes. They usually have a clinical component involving an internship with a local medical facility. Associate Degrees are routinely a pre-requisite for and credits can be transferred to a four year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a similar field.
Online Medical Assistant Programs
There are numerous accredited medical assistant programs accessible online too. They are an excellent alternative for students who may not have the time to go to classes on campus but could fit them in if accessible at home. This is an especially good alternative for students who continue to work full-time while pursuing their certificate or degree. As an additional benefit, some online programs have lower tuitions than the more traditional on campus alternatives. Supplemental expenses including those for commuting, textbooks and school supplies can be minimized also. But bear in mind that any requirements for practical training or internships must still be met, but they can typically be completed in Auburn GA area medical facilities. If you can learn without the formal structure of attending supervised classes on campus, then this approach to receiving your education may be the right choice for you. Between the online courses and the clinical training, everything necessary to achieve proficiency to perform as a medical assistant is furnished.
Certification Programs for Medical Assistants
As earlier stated, becoming certified is not a legal mandate, but is an excellent choice for individuals who want to boost their careers. It will not only help in attaining a position after graduation, but it might also enhance initial salary negotiations. Many possible Auburn GA medical employers simply will not employ a medical assistant that has not obtained certification or accredited formal training. Among the most popular and perhaps the most highly regarded certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). In order to apply for the CMA examination, a candidate must have graduated or will graduate within 30 days from an accredited medical assistant program. Additional certifications are offered also, such as the CMAA and the CCMA that we previously mentioned which are provided by the NHA.
What to Ask Medical Assistant Colleges
Prior to examining your medical assistant school options, you have to choose which kind of credential you would like to attain, and if you would prefer attending classes on campus or online from home. After those selections have been made, you can begin the procedure of comparing medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the opening of this article, some prospective students limit their searches to the colleges that are nearest to Auburn GA with the lowest tuition. Although cost and location are important qualifications, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional issues that you need to explore when researching schools. To assist you with that process, following are some questions that you need to ask about all of the schools you are thinking about before making your ultimate choice.
Is the Medical Assistant Program Accredited? There are several great reasons to ensure that the college you enroll in 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 complete an accredited program. Two of the approved agencies 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. Additionally, if you plan on obtaining a student loan or financial assistance, they are often not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as previously mentioned, a number of potential Auburn GA employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited college.
What is the Program’s Passage Rate? Most of the accredited medical assistant schools create their programs to prep students to pass one or more certification exams. To begin with, you must learn which of the certifications the schools you are looking at are preparing their students to take. If you are interested in taking the CMA for instance, then obviously you will need to select a program focused on that certification. Next, ask what the school’s passage rate is for the certification and contrast it to the national average. Doing this is just one of the ways to help evaluate the quality of a school’s program. Of course schools with lower rates are ones that you will want to eliminate.
Which Programs are Offered? As we covered earlier, there are basically two paths to getting medical assistant training. You can select a diploma or certificate program and get entry level training in the shortest amount of time, starting at just 6 months, although the average is closer to one year. Or you can decide to obtain an Associate Degree and get a broader education that will require approximately 2 years to finish in a community college or vocational school. Whatever program you elect to enroll in, verify that the schools you are considering offer the kind of program you are interested in.
Are Internships Offered? A large number of medical assistant schools sponsor internship programs with Auburn GA area medical care providers. They are an excellent means to obtain hands-on clinical training and experience. They can also help students build relationships within the Auburn healthcare community. And as an additional benefit, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Service Supplied? Landing that very first job can be a challenging task for medical assistant school graduates unless they obtain a little help from a job placement program. Confirm that the colleges you are researching offer job placement assistance in the Auburn GA area and ask what their placement rate is. If a school has a high job placement rate for its students, it indicates that it has an excellent reputation within the health care community. It also signifies that it has a broad network of employers to help place students in jobs.
How Big are the Classrooms? Class size can be an indicator of how much individual attention you will get throughout your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to offer greater access to instructors and one-on-one interaction. If possible, try to monitor a couple of classes before choosing a school to experience what the teaching atmosphere is like and just how much attention the students receive.
Is Class Scheduling Practical? If you plan on attending a medical assistant school while you continue working on a full time basis, it’s essential that the college you choose provides classes that fit your schedule. If you have to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Auburn GA, confirm that those times are offered. You might be able to fit your classes in easier with an online school, but you will still need to schedule any internships or clinical training that will be required. Also, ask 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 Auburn Georgia?
If you are considering attending a medical assistant school in the Auburn GA area, following is some background information that may be both interesting and useful regarding your future campus location.
Auburn is located in western Barrow County at 34°1′0″N 83°49′55″W / 34.01667°N 83.83194°W / 34.01667; -83.83194 (34.016692, -83.831869). It is 42 miles (68 km) northeast of downtown Atlanta and 27 miles (43 km) west of Athens.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 6.5 square miles (16.8 km2), of which 6.4 square miles (16.7 km2) is land and 0.03 square miles (0.07 km2), or 0.39%, is water.
As of 2010 Auburn had a population of 6,887. The racial and ethnic composition of the population was 85.3% white, 4.9% black or African American, 0.4% Native American, 4.1% Asian, 3.3% from some other race and 2.1% reporting two or more races. 7.7% of the population was Hispanic or Latino.
Enroll in the Right Medical Assistant Course Auburn GA
It’s important to start your new career on the right foot by picking a medical assistant school that will furnish the right training. Whether you’re goal is to launch a career in medical care starting out as a medical assistant or to pursue medical assistance as your lifetime career, you need to get the right info on available programs prior to making your decision. There are such a large number of colleges offering training nowadays that you can make a decision based upon your personal preferences and individual circumstances. And as we have covered in this article, make sure that the program you pick is accredited by a recognized organization, such as the CAAHEP. This is particularly important if you plan on taking the CMA certification exam. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Medical Assistant Night Classes. But regardless of the type of credential that you intend to earn or if you have made a decision to attend either an on-campus or online school, make sure to ask the questions we have supplied so you can compare programs and make an informed decision. And by picking the best program you can subsequently start a gratifying career as a medical assistant in Auburn GA.
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Our Medical Assistant program will give you the education you need for entry-level front- or back-office medical assistant positions in clinics, hospitals, and doctors' offices. You'll also complete a 250-hour externship where you'll receive on-the-job training at an approved extern employment site in the community.
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The BLS’ census reports shows 46,320 medical assistants with an occupation in Florida earning an avg annual salary of $30,170. Boasting an estimated 23 percent increase through 2024, the medical assistant profession is growing rapidly.
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