Medical Assistant Skills Duluth GA

How to Find the Right Medical Assistant School Program near Duluth Georgia

Duluth GA medical assistant checking pulseNow that you have decided to become a part of the gratifying profession of health care and enroll in a medical assistant school near Duluth GA, it’s time to select a college that will provide the proper training. But just how do you approach comparing and evaluating schools so that you ultimately pick the right one? Many potential students start by checking out the medical assistant schools that are nearest to their homes and then lean 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 factors as well. You may choose to look into a few online medical assistant programs as an alternative also (more about that later). The bottom line is that before you select a program you must finish your due diligence and compare all important aspects of the schools you are assessing. And to help you with that task, we have included several questions that you need to ask all of the colleges on your short list. But prior to starting that review, let’s talk a little bit about the role of a medical assistant and the type of training and credentials that are offered.

The Responsibilities of a Medical Assistant

medical assistant with Duluth GA nursing home patientThe duties of a medical assistant can be varied as well as demanding. Essentially their duty is to make sure that the Duluth GA clinics, hospitals and other medical care facilities where they work operate successfully. Based on the size or type of facility, they may be more of a clinical assistant, an administrative assistant, or in smaller facilities both. They are tasked with providing direct assistance to the physicians, nurses and other medical professionals but can also be found working in an office or at the front desk. A few of the potential responsibilities of a medical assistant include:

  • Filling out insurance forms and submitting claims
  • Scheduling and verifying appointments
  • Weighing and taking patients vital signs
  • Taking blood and other fluid and tissue samples
  • Preparing instruments and rooms for physicians
  • Giving basic support during exams and procedures

Although medical assistants may perform almost any duty they are qualified to under Georgia law, some choose to specialize in a particular area and obtain certification. Two of the options 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 Training

Unlike many other healthcare practitioners, medical assistants are not required to become licensed, certified, or to have a college degree. However, many Duluth GA health care employers choose to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (we’ll cover accreditation later ) that have earned certification. There are basically two options offered for a formal education. The first and quickest route to becoming a medical assistant is to earn a diploma or a certificate. These programs typically take about a year to complete, a few as little as 6 to 9 months. They are designed to teach the basics of medical assisting and ready graduates for entry level positions. The second alternative is to acquire an Associate Degree, which are usually 2 year programs offered at junior and community colleges as well as vocational and technical schools. They are more extensive in nature than the diploma or certificate programs, and include general education courses in addition to the medical assistant courses. They usually have a clinical component requiring an internship with a local healthcare practice. 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.

Online Medical Assistant Programs

woman attending medical assistant school online in Duluth GAThere are a number of accredited medical assistant programs offered online as well. They are an excellent alternative for individuals who might not have time to attend classes on campus but could work them in if attended at home. This is an especially good option for students who continue working full-time while earning their degree or certificate. As an added benefit, a number of online schools have lower tuitions than the more traditional on campus alternatives. Ancillary expenses including those for textbooks, commuting and school supplies can be lessened also. Just remember that any requirements for practical training or internships must still be met, but they can usually be performed in Duluth GA area medical facilities. If you can learn without the rigid structure of going to supervised classes on campus, then this approach to getting your education may be the best option for you. With the online lessons and the practical training, everything needed to achieve proficiency to perform as a medical assistant is provided.

Certification Programs for Medical Assistants

As stated previously, certification is not a legal mandate, but is an excellent option for those who want to boost their careers. Not only will it help in attaining employment after graduation, but it can also enhance preliminary salary negotiations. Many potential Duluth GA medical employers simply will not hire a medical assistant that has not attained certification or accredited formal training. 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 sit for the CMA examination, an applicant must be a graduate or will graduate within thirty days from an accredited medical assistant program. Additional certifications are available as well, such as the CMAA and the CCMA that we discussed earlier which are offered by the NHA.

Points to Ask Medical Assistant Programs

Questions to ask Duluth GA medical assistant programsPrior to examining your medical assistant school options, you need to decide which kind of credential you want to earn, and if you would prefer attending classes on-campus or online at home. After those choices have been made, you can begin the procedure of researching medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, many prospective students confine their searches to the schools that are nearest to Duluth GA with the cheapest tuition. Although cost and location are significant qualifiers, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional considerations that you need to examine when researching schools. To assist you with that task, following are some questions that you should ask about all of the programs you are thinking about before making your final selection.

Is the Medical Assistant Course Accredited? There are many good reasons to verify that the college you enroll in is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps guarantee that the training you receive will be both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Next, if you intend to become certified, you need to complete an accredited program. Two of the acknowledged 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 qualified to take the CMA examination. Additionally, if you plan on applying for a student loan or financial assistance, they are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. And finally, as mentioned previously, a number of potential Duluth GA employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.

What is the School’s Passing Rate? The majority of accredited medical assistant schools create their programs to ready 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 naturally you will need to enroll in a program focused on that certification. Next, ask what the school’s passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. This is one of the methods to help assess the quality of a college’s program. Obviously schools with lower rates are ones that you will want to avoid.

Which Programs are Offered? As we previously covered, there are basically two paths to getting medical assistant training. You can choose a diploma or certificate program and get entry level training in the fastest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, although the average is about 1 year. Or you can decide to acquire an Associate Degree and receive a more comprehensive education that will take approximately 2 years to finish in a community college or trade school. Whichever program you choose to pursue, make sure that the colleges you are reviewing offer the type of program you have an interest in.

Are Internships Sponsored? Many medical assistant schools offer internship programs with Duluth GA area healthcare providers. They are a great means to obtain hands-on clinical training and experience. They can also help students develop relationships within the Duluth medical community. And as an additional benefit, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.

Is Job Placement Support Furnished? Finding that initial job can be a challenging task for graduating medical assistant students unless they obtain some help from a job placement program. Verify that the colleges you are researching provide job placement assistance in the Duluth GA area and find out what their placement rate is. If a college has a high job placement rate for its graduates, it affirms that it has a good reputation within the medical community. It also signifies that it has a broad network of employers to help place students in jobs.

How Large are the Classrooms? Class size can be an indicator of how much personal attention you will receive during your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to provide greater access to instructors and one-on-one interaction. If possible, try to attend a few classes before selecting a program to witness what the teaching atmosphere is like and just how much attention the students get.

Is Class Scheduling Accommodating? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant program while you continue to work on a full time basis, it’s essential that the school you select offers classes that fit your schedule. If you have to go to classes at night or on weekends near Duluth GA, verify that those times are offered. You may be able to fit your classes in easier with an online program, but you will still have to schedule all clinical training or internships that will be required. Also, ask what the policy is for making up classes that you may have to miss because of illness, work or family responsibilities.

Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Duluth Georgia?

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

Duluth, Georgia

Duluth is a city in Gwinnett County, Georgia, United States. It is a suburb of Atlanta. As of the 2010 census, Duluth had a population of 26,600,[5] and the U.S. Census Bureau estimated the population to be 29,331 as of 2016.[2]

Duluth is located north of Interstate 85. It is home to Gwinnett Place Mall, the Gwinnett Civic and Cultural Center, Infinite Energy Arena, Hudgens Center for the Arts, and the Red Clay Theater. It is also home to Gwinnett Medical Center–Duluth, an 81-bed hospital constructed in 2006, as well as GMC's Glancy Campus, a 30-bed facility located near downtown. The agricultural manufacturer AGCO is based in Duluth.

Duluth was originally Cherokee territory.[8] When Duluth was established in the early 19th century, it was primarily forest land occupied by tribespeople. An Indian trail, called Old Peachtree Road by the settlers, was extended through the area during the War of 1812 to connect Fort Peachtree in present-day Atlanta with Fort Daniel near present-day Dacula. When Gwinnett County was established in 1818, white settlement of the area accelerated.[citation needed]

Select the Best Medical Assistant Training Program Duluth GA

Duluth GA medical assistant studentIt’s imperative to begin your new career on the right foot by selecting a medical assistant school that will furnish the right training. Whether you’re objective is to launch a career in healthcare starting out as a medical assistant or to pursue medical assistance as your lifetime career, you must obtain the appropriate info on available programs prior to making your decision. There are such a large number of schools offering training nowadays that you can make a decision based upon your individual circumstances and personal preferences. And as we have covered in this article, make sure that the program you decide on is accredited by a recognized agency, such as the CAAHEP. This is especially important if you intend on taking the CMA certification examination. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Medical Assistant Skills. But regardless of the type of credential that you plan to earn or if you have decided to attend either an on-campus or online school, make sure to ask the questions we have provided so you can evaluate programs and make an informed decision. And by choosing the ideal program you can subsequently start a rewarding career as a medical assistant in Duluth GA.

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