Certified Medical Assistant Schools Near Me Lake Park GA

How to Find the Right Medical Assistant Training School near Lake Park Georgia

Lake Park GA medical assistant checking pulseNow that you have made a decision to join the rewarding field of healthcare and enroll in a medical assistant school near Lake Park GA, it’s time to select a school that will provide the right training. But just how do you undertake evaluating and comparing schools so that you subsequently pick the best one? Most future students begin by evaluating the medical assistant schools that are nearest to their homes and then lean toward those that have the cheapest tuition. While cost and location are extremely important such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are important issues also. You may choose to research some online medical assistant programs as an alternative as well (more on that later). The bottom line is that before you select a program you need to carry out your due diligence and compare all relevant aspects of the colleges you are evaluating. And to help you with that process, we have provided a few questions that you need to ask each of the schools 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 kind of credentials and training that are available.

The Duties of Medical Assistants

medical assistant with Lake Park GA nursing home patientThe duties of a medical assistant can be varied as well as demanding. Basically their duty is to make sure that the Lake Park GA hospitals, clinics and other healthcare centers where they work run successfully. Depending 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 tasked with giving direct support to the physicians, nurses and other medical practitioners but can also be found working in an office or at the front desk. Some of the possible duties of a medical assistant include:

  • Completing insurance forms and submitting claims
  • Setting and verifying appointments
  • Taking vital signs and weighing patients
  • Taking blood and other tissue and fluid specimens
  • Preparing instruments and rooms for physicians
  • Supplying basic support during examinations and procedures

While medical assistants can perform almost any activity they are qualified to under Georgia law, some elect to specialize in a particular area and earn certification. Two of the options offered are for the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) and the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) offered by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).

Medical Assistant Education

Unlike most other medical professionals, medical assistants are not mandated to become certified, licensed, or to have a college degree. However, a number of Lake Park GA health care employers would rather hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training school (more on accreditation later ) that have earned certification. There are generally 2 choices available for a formal education. The first and shortest route to becoming a medical assistant is to obtain a diploma or a certificate. These programs typically take about a year to finish, a few as little as six to nine months. They are designed to teach the basics of medical assisting and ready graduates for entry level positions. The second alternative is to attain an Associate Degree, which are typically two year programs offered at community and junior colleges as well as trade and vocational schools. They are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma or certificate programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant classes. They often have a practical component requiring an internship with a local healthcare practice. Associate Degrees are commonly a pre-requisite for and credits can be transferred to a 4 year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a similar field.

Medical Assistant Online Programs

woman attending medical assistant school online in Lake Park GAThere are numerous accredited medical assistant programs offered online too. They are a good option for individuals who may not have time to attend classes on campus but could work them in if accessible at home. This is a particularly good choice for students who continue working full-time while earning their certificate or degree. As an extra benefit, a number of online programs have cheaper tuitions than the more conventional on campus options. Ancillary expenses such as for commuting, textbooks and school supplies might be reduced also. But remember that any requirements for clinical training or internships must still be fulfilled, but they can usually be completed in Lake Park GA area health care facilities. If you can earn a degree without the formal structure of attending supervised classes on-campus, then this mode of receiving your education may be the ideal choice for you. With the online courses and the practical training, everything necessary to achieve proficiency to perform as a medical assistant is provided.

Certification Programs for Medical Assistants

As stated previously, becoming certified is not a legal requirement, but is a good choice for graduates who want to advance their careers. Not only will it help in obtaining a position after graduation, but it might also enhance initial salary negotiations. Many potential Lake Park GA medical employers simply will not employ a medical assistant that has not obtained accredited formal training or certification. One of the most popular and perhaps the most respected certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). In order to take the CMA examination, an applicant must have graduated or will be graduating within thirty days from an accredited medical assistant program. Additional certifications are available also, such as the CCMA and the CMAA that we discussed earlier which are provided by the NHA.

Points to Ask Medical Assistant Schools

Questions to ask Lake Park GA medical assistant programsBefore you can start assessing your medical assistant school options, you need to decide which type of credential you would like to attain, and if you want to attend classes on-campus or online from home. As soon as those choices have been made, you can start the procedure of researching medical assistant schools. As we covered at the opening of this article, some students limit their searches to the schools that are nearest to Lake Park GA with the cheapest tuition. Although cost and location are important qualifications, they are not the only ones. There are a number of additional considerations that you should examine when evaluating schools. To assist you with that process, below are a few questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are considering before making your final selection.

Is the Medical Assistant Course Accredited? There are many great reasons to ensure that the program you select is accredited. First, accreditation helps guarantee that the education you receive will be both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Next, 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 program is not accredited by one of these organizations, you will not be eligible to take the CMA exam. Additionally, if you plan on obtaining a student loan or financial aid, they are normally not available for non-accredited programs. And last, as mentioned previously, many potential Lake Park GA employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.

What is the Program’s Passing Rate? The majority of accredited medical assistant colleges design their programs to prep students to pass one or more certification examinations. To begin with, you need to determine which of the certifications the colleges you are reviewing are preparing their students to take. If you are planning on taking the CMA for example, then obviously you will want to choose a program concentrating on that certification. Next, ask what the program’s passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. Doing this is just one of the ways to help evaluate the quality of a college’s program. Naturally schools with lower rates are ones that you will prefer to eliminate.

Which Credentials are Provided? As we previously covered, there are generally two paths to getting medical assistant training. You can select a certificate or diploma program and get entry level training in the fastest amount of time, from as little as 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 about two years to finish in a community college or trade school. Whatever program you choose to pursue, make sure that the schools you are reviewing provide the kind of program you are interested in.

Are Internships Sponsored? Many medical assistant schools offer internship programs with Lake Park GA area medical providers. They are a great method to obtain hands-on practical training and experience. They may also assist students build relationships within the Lake Park healthcare community. And as an added perk, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.

Is Job Placement Service Provided? Getting that first job can be a challenging task for graduating medical assistant students unless they have a little help from a job placement program. Confirm that the schools you are researching provide job placement assistance in the Lake Park GA area and find out what their placement rate is. If a program has a high job placement rate for its students, it indicates that it has an excellent reputation within the medical community. It also signifies that it has a large network of contacts to help place students in positions.

How Big are the Classes? Class size might be an indicator of how much personal attention you will receive during your training. Smaller classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more prone to offer increased access to instructors and face to face interaction. If practical, try to attend a couple of classes before selecting a school to experience what the teaching environment is like and just how much attention the students get.

Is Class Scheduling Convenient? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant program while you continue to work full-time, it’s essential that the program you select offers classes that fit your schedule. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Lake Park GA, make certain that those times are offered. You may be able to fit your classes in more conveniently with an online school, but you will still have to schedule any internships or practical training that will be required. Also, find out what the policy is for making up classes that you might have to miss because of illness, work or family responsibilities.

Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Lake Park Georgia?

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

Lake Park, Georgia

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.5 square miles (3.9 km2), of which 1.4 square miles (3.6 km2) is land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2) (2.72%) is water.

As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 549 people, 224 households, and 140 families residing in the city. The population density was 385.5 people per square mile (149.3/km²). There were 262 housing units at an average density of 184.0 per square mile (71.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 80.15% White, 15.66% African American, 1.82% Native American, 0.36% Asian, 0.36% from other races, and 1.64% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.19% of the population.

There were 224 households out of which 28.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.5% were married couples living together, 14.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.5% were non-families. 35.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 18.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.31 and the average family size was 2.96.

Pick the Ideal Medical Assistant Course Lake Park GA

Lake Park GA medical assistant studentIt’s important to start your new career on the right foot by choosing a medical assistant program that will furnish the right training. Regardless if you’re goal is to begin a career in medical care starting out as a medical assistant or to pursue medical assistance as your lifetime career, you must get the right information on available programs prior to making your decision. There are so many colleges offering training these days that you can make a selection based upon your personal preferences and individual circumstances. And as we have covered in this article, make sure that the program you decide on is accredited by a recognized agency, for example 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 Certified Medical Assistant Schools Near Me. But irrespective of the type of credential that you intend 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 so you can evaluate programs and make an informed decision. And by selecting the best program you can ultimately start a rewarding career as a medical assistant in Lake Park GA.

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