Certified Medical Assistant Program Douglasville GA

How to Enroll In a Medical Assistant School Program near Douglasville Georgia

Douglasville GA medical assistant checking pulseOnce you have decided to become a part of the gratifying profession of healthcare and enroll in a medical assistant school near Douglasville GA, it’s time to choose a school that will furnish the proper training. But just how do you go about evaluating and comparing colleges so that you ultimately enroll in the right one? Most prospective students start by researching the medical assistant schools that are closest to their homes and then gravitate toward those that have the cheapest tuition. While location and cost are extremely important such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are important issues as well. You might want to take a look at some online medical assistant programs as an alternative also (more about that later). The bottom line is that before you select a program you must complete your due diligence and compare all pertinent qualifications of the schools you are examining. And to help you with that process, we have furnished some questions that you should ask all of the schools on your “maybe” list. But before we start that review, let’s briefly talk about the function of a medical assistant and the kind of credentials and training that are available.

The Job of a Medical Assistant

medical assistant with Douglasville GA nursing home patientThe responsibilities of a medical assistant can be diverse as well as challenging. Essentially their job is ensure that the Douglasville GA hospitals, clinics and other medical care institutions where they work run efficiently. Based on the type or size of facility, they may be more of a clinical assistant, an administrative assistant, or in smaller facilities both. They are responsible for providing direct assistance to the physicians, nurses and other medical practitioners but may also be found performing duties in an office or at the front desk. A few of the possible functions of a medical assistant include:

  • Filling out insurance forms and filing claims
  • Scheduling and confirming appointments
  • Weighing and taking patients vital signs
  • Collecting blood and other tissue and fluid specimens
  • Preparing instruments and rooms for physicians
  • Giving general support during exams and procedures

Although medical assistants may perform almost any activity they are authorized to under Georgia law, some prefer to specialize in a particular area and obtain certification. Two of the options offered are for the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) and the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) provided by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).

Medical Assistant Programs

In contrast to most other medical professionals, medical assistants are not mandated to become certified, licensed, or to earn a college degree. However, a number of Douglasville GA health care employers prefer to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (we’ll cover accreditation later ) that are certified. There are essentially 2 options provided for a formal education. The first and fastest way to becoming a medical assistant is to earn a diploma or a certificate. These programs normally take about 1 year to finish, 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 alternative is to acquire an Associate Degree, which are normally 2 year programs available at community and junior colleges in addition to trade and vocational schools. They are more comprehensive in design than the diploma or certificate programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant training. They usually have a clinical component requiring an internship with a local healthcare facility. Associate Degrees are commonly a pre-requisite for and credits can be transferred to a four year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a related field.

Medical Assistant Online Colleges

woman attending medical assistant school online in Douglasville GAThere are a number of accredited medical assistant programs offered online too. They are an excellent alternative for those who may not have the time to go to classes on campus but could fit them in if attended at home. This is an especially good option for students who continue to work full time while earning their degree or certificate. As an extra benefit, some online schools have lower tuitions than the more traditional on campus options. Ancillary expenses including those for textbooks, commuting and school supplies may be reduced as well. But keep in mind that all requirements for clinical training or internships must still be met, but they can often be completed in Douglasville GA area healthcare facilities. If you can earn a degree without the formal structure of going to supervised classes on-campus, then this mode of getting your education may be the right choice for you. Between the online classes and the practical training, everything needed to attain proficiency to work as a medical assistant is furnished.

Certification Options for Medical Assistants

As stated previously, certification is not a legal mandate, but is an excellent choice for individuals who want to boost their careers. It will not only help in obtaining a job after graduation, but it can also enhance initial salary negotiations. A number of potential Douglasville GA medical employers simply will not hire a medical assistant that has not received accredited formal training or certification. The most popular and perhaps the most respected certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) provided by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). In order to sit for the CMA exam, an applicant must be a graduate or will be graduating within 30 days from an accredited medical assistant program. Alternative certifications are offered also, for instance the CCMA and the CMAA that we discussed earlier which are provided by the NHA.

Points to Ask Medical Assistant Colleges

Questions to ask Douglasville GA medical assistant programsBefore you can start examining your medical assistant school alternatives, you have to determine which kind of credential you want to attain, and if you want to attend classes on campus or online at home. After those choices have been made, you can start the procedure of evaluating medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, many prospective students confine their searches to the schools that are closest to Douglasville GA with the most affordable tuition. Although location and cost are important qualifiers, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional considerations that you should examine when researching programs. To assist you with that process, following are some questions that you should ask about all of the schools you are thinking about before making your ultimate choice.

Is the Medical Assistant Course Accredited? There are a number of great reasons to make certain that the program you select is accredited. First, accreditation helps ensure that the education you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you intend to become certified, you need to complete an accredited program. Two of the accepted organizations for accreditation are the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) and the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). If your school is not accredited by either of these organizations, you will not be eligible to take the CMA exam. Additionally, if you intend on applying for a student loan or financial aid, they are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. And last, as previously mentioned, many prospective Douglasville GA employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited program.

What is the School’s Passage Percentage? Most of the accredited medical assistant schools create their programs to prep students to pass one or more certification exams. To start with, you must learn which of the certifications the colleges you are considering are preparing their students for. If you are planning on taking the CMA for example, then obviously you will want to select a program concentrating on that certification. Second, find out what the school’s passage rate is for the certification and contrast it to the national average. Doing this is just one of the methods to help evaluate the quality of a college’s program. Obviously programs with low rates are ones that you will want to eliminate.

Which Credentials are Provided? As we previously covered, there are essentially two paths to getting medical assistant training. You can enroll in a certificate or diploma program and obtain entry level training in the fastest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, although the average is about one year. Or you can choose to acquire an Associate Degree and get a more comprehensive education that will take about two years to accomplish in a community college or trade school. Whichever program you choose to pursue, make sure that the colleges you are looking at provide the type of program you have an interest in.

Are Internships Provided? A large number of medical assistant colleges sponsor internship programs with Douglasville GA area medical care providers. They are a great way to get hands-on practical training and experience. They can also help students develop relationships within the Douglasville healthcare community. And as an added benefit, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews as well.

Is Job Placement Service Offered? Getting that very first job can be a challenging undertaking for graduating medical assistant students unless they receive some help from a job placement program. Verify that the colleges you are researching offer job placement assistance in the Douglasville GA area and find out what their placement rate is. If a school has a high job placement rate for its students, it affirms that it has an excellent reputation within the healthcare community. It also signifies that it has a wide network of employers to help place students in positions.

How Large are the Classes? Class size might be an indicator of how much personal attention you will get during your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to provide increased access to teachers and face to face interaction. If convenient, try to attend a couple of classes before choosing a college to witness what the teaching atmosphere is like and how much attention the students receive.

Is Class Scheduling Practical? If you plan on attending a medical assistant college while you continue to work full time, it’s imperative that the college you select offers classes that accommodate your schedule. If you have to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Douglasville GA, make sure that those times are available. You might be able to fit your classes in easier with an online college, but you will also need to schedule any internships or practical training that might be required. Additionally, ask what the policy is for making up classes that you may have to miss because of illness, work or family emergencies.

Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Douglasville Georgia?

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

Douglasville, Georgia

Located along a natural rise in the topography, Douglasville was originally known as "Skint Chestnut."[6] The name was derived from a large tree used by Native Americans as a landmark; it was stripped of its bark so as to be more conspicuous.

Douglasville was founded in 1874 as the railroad was constructed in the area. That same year, Douglasville was designated as the county seat of the recently formed Douglas County. The community was named for Senator Stephen A. Douglas.[7]

On September 21, 2009, Douglas County was devastated by the worst flood in Georgia history. Over 18 inches (457 mm) of rain fell in one night, destroying many roads and homes. The county was later declared a disaster area, and the governor of Georgia declared a state of emergency. The flooding most affected the areas of Douglasville, Villa Rica, Austell, Lithia Springs, and Chapel Hill. The disaster killed more than eight people in the county, most of them in the Douglasville area.

Choose the Ideal Medical Assistant Program Douglasville GA

Douglasville GA medical assistant studentIt’s important to begin your new career on the right foot by selecting a medical assistant program that will furnish the proper training. Regardless if you’re objective is to begin a career in healthcare starting out as a medical assistant or to practice medical assistance as your life long career, you need to acquire the right info on available programs before making your decision. There are so many schools offering training these days that you can make a selection based upon your personal preferences and individual circumstances. And as we have discussed in this article, make certain that the program you choose is accredited by a recognized organization, such as the CAAHEP. This is particularly critical if you anticipate taking the CMA certification examination. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Certified Medical Assistant Program. But regardless of the type of credential that you plan to earn or if you have decided to attend either an online or on-campus school, don’t forget to ask the questions we have supplied in order to compare programs and make an informed decision. And by selecting the best program you can ultimately begin a fulfilling career as a medical assistant in Douglasville GA.

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