Medical Assistant Responsibilities Stone Mountain GA

How to Select a Medical Assistant Training Program near Stone Mountain Georgia

Stone Mountain GA medical assistant checking pulseOnce you have decided to enter the gratifying profession of healthcare and enroll in a medical assistant school near Stone Mountain GA, it’s time to choose a college that will provide the appropriate training. But just how do you go about comparing and evaluating schools so that you ultimately enroll in the ideal one? Most prospective students begin by researching the medical assistant schools that are closest to their homes and then lean toward those that have the most affordable tuition. While cost and location are very important, such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are important issues also. You may decide to look into some online medical assistant programs as an alternative also (more about that later). The bottom line is that prior to selecting a college you must finish your due diligence and compare all important qualifications of the colleges you are assessing. And to help you with that process, we have included some questions that you should ask all of the schools on your short list. But before we start that review, let’s talk a little bit about the responsibilities of a medical assistant and the type of training and credentials that are offered.

The Duties of a Medical Assistant

medical assistant with Stone Mountain GA nursing home patientThe job of a medical assistant can be diverse as well as demanding. Basically their role is to make sure that the Stone Mountain GA clinics, hospitals and other healthcare centers where they work operate successfully. Based on the size or type of facility, they can be more of an administrative assistant, a clinical assistant, or in smaller facilities both. They are tasked with giving direct support to the nurses, doctors and other medical professionals but can also be found working at the front desk or in an office. A few of the many functions of a medical assistant include:

  • Completing insurance forms and filing claims
  • Scheduling and confirming appointments
  • Weighing and taking patients vital signs
  • Taking blood and other tissue and fluid specimens
  • Preparing rooms and instruments for doctors
  • Giving basic support during examinations and procedures

Although medical assistants may carry out almost any task they are authorized to under Georgia law, some choose 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 Training

In contrast to most other medical professionals, medical assistants are not required to become certified, licensed, or to earn a college degree. However, many Stone Mountain GA health care employers choose 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 route to becoming a medical assistant is to obtain a diploma or a certificate. These programs normally take about a year to finish, a few as little as six to nine months. They are designed to teach the fundamentals of medical assisting and prepare graduates for entry level positions. The second alternative is to earn an Associate Degree, which are usually 2 year programs available at community and junior colleges together with vocational and technical schools. They are more expansive in design than the diploma or certificate programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant classes. They often have a clinical component involving an internship with a local healthcare practice. 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

woman attending medical assistant school online in Stone Mountain GAThere are numerous accredited medical assistant programs available online too. They are a good option for individuals who might not have the time to go to classes on campus but could work them in if accessible at home. This is a particularly good alternative for students who continue working full-time while pursuing their degree or certificate. As an additional benefit, some online schools have cheaper tuitions than the more traditional on campus options. Supplemental expenses such as for textbooks, commuting and school supplies might be lessened as well. But keep in mind that any requirements for practical training or internships must still be satisfied, but they can often be completed in Stone Mountain 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 option for you. With the online courses and the clinical training, everything necessary to achieve proficiency to perform as a medical assistant is furnished.

Certification Options for Medical Assistants

As stated previously, becoming certified is not a legal mandate, but is an excellent idea for those who wish to advance their careers. Not only will it help in securing a job after graduation, but it can also enhance initial salary negotiations. A number of possible Stone Mountain GA medical employers just will not hire a medical assistant that has not received accredited formal training or certification. 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 exam, an applicant must be a graduate or will graduate within thirty days from an accredited medical assistant program. Alternative certifications are available also, such as the CMAA and the CCMA that we discussed earlier which are provided by the NHA.

What to Ask Medical Assistant Colleges

Questions to ask Stone Mountain GA medical assistant programsPrior to assessing your medical assistant school alternatives, you have to determine which kind of credential you want to earn, and if you want to attend classes on-campus or online at home. After those choices have been made, you can start the process of evaluating medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, many potential students restrict their searches to the schools that are nearest to Stone Mountain GA with the lowest tuition. Although cost and location are important qualifiers, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional considerations that you should explore when evaluating schools. To assist you with that task, following are some questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your ultimate choice.

Is the Medical Assistant Program Accredited? There are many good reasons to verify that the college you enroll in is accredited. First, accreditation helps guarantee that the training you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Next, if you plan on becoming 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 one of these agencies, you will not be eligible to take the CMA examination. Additionally, if you intend on obtaining a student loan or financial aid, they are normally not offered for non-accredited programs. And finally, as previously mentioned, many potential Stone Mountain GA employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited college.

What is the Program’s Passage Rate? The majority of accredited medical assistant colleges create their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification examinations. To start with, you must determine which of the certifications the programs you are looking at are preparing their students to take. If you are planning on taking the CMA for example, then naturally you will want to choose a program targeting that certification. Next, 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 assess the quality of a school’s program. Of course schools with low rates are those that you will want to avoid.

Which Credentials are Offered? As we covered earlier, there are basically two paths to getting medical assistant training. You can choose a diploma or certificate program and receive entry level training in the shortest amount of time, starting at just 6 months, although the average is about 1 year. Or you can decide to obtain an Associate Degree and get a broader education that will take about two years to finish in a junior college or vocational school. Whichever program you choose to pursue, make certain that the schools you are reviewing provide the kind of program you are interested in.

Are Internships Offered? A large number of medical assistant schools offer internship programs with Stone Mountain GA area medical providers. They are a great means to receive hands-on practical training and experience. They may also assist students develop relationships within the Stone Mountain healthcare community. And as an added perk, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews as well.

Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Landing that initial job can be a difficult task for medical assistant school graduates unless they have some help from a job placement program. Confirm that the schools you are interviewing provide job placement assistance in the Stone Mountain GA area and ask what their placement rate is. If a school has a high job placement rate for its graduates, it affirms that it has an excellent reputation within the medical community. It also indicates that it has a wide network of contacts to help place students in positions.

How Large are the Classes? Class size might be an indication of how much individual attention you will receive throughout your training. Smaller classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to furnish increased access to teachers and face to face interaction. If convenient, try to sit in on a few classes before enrolling in a college to observe what the teaching environment is like and how much attention the students get.

Is Class Scheduling Convenient? If you plan on attending a medical assistant college while you continue working full-time, it’s essential that the college you enroll in offers classes that accommodate your schedule. If you have to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Stone Mountain GA, confirm that those times are offered. You may be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online school, but you will still need to schedule any clinical training or internships that might be required. Also, ask what the policy is for making up classes that you might have to miss because of illness, work or family emergencies.

Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Stone Mountain Georgia?

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

Stone Mountain, Georgia

Stone Mountain is a city in DeKalb County, Georgia, United States. The population was 6,368 according to the 2017 US Census estimate.[4] Stone Mountain is located in the eastern part of DeKalb County and is a suburb of Atlanta and encompasses nearly 1.7 square miles. It lies near and touches the western base of the geological formation Stone Mountain. Residents often refer to the city as Stone Mountain Village to distinguish it from the larger unincorporated area traditionally considered "Stone Mountain."

In 1822, the area that now makes up the city of Stone Mountain was made a part of the newly formed DeKalb County. A post office was created in 1834 on the old Augusta Road, and Andrew Johnson built a hotel along the road in 1836. At around the same time, Aaron Cloud built an observation tower at the summit of the mountain. Visitors to the mountain would travel to the area by rail and road, and then hike up the 1.1-mile (1.8 km) mountaintop trail to the top, where Cloud also had a restaurant and club.

The mountain has been known by a variety of names. Rock Mountain was its moniker prior to 1825, but by the close of the 1830s, Stone Mountain had become the generally accepted name. Like the mountain, the village formed at its base was initially known as Rock Mountain but was incorporated as New Gibraltar in 1839 under an Act of the General Assembly. In 1847, the name was again changed to Stone Mountain by an Act of Legislature. [5]

Pick the Ideal Medical Assistant Training Stone Mountain GA

Stone Mountain GA medical assistant studentIt’s essential to start your new career on the right foot by selecting a medical assistant school that will provide the appropriate training. Regardless if you’re planning to launch a career in medical care starting out as a medical assistant or to practice medical assistance as your lifetime career, you need to get the right info on available programs prior to making your selection. There are such a large number of schools providing 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 decide on is accredited by a recognized agency, such as the CAAHEP. This is especially critical if you intend on taking the CMA certification exam. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Medical Assistant Responsibilities. But irrespective of the type of credential that you plan to earn or if you have made a decision to attend either an on-campus or online school, don’t forget to ask the questions we have provided so you can compare programs and make an informed decision. And by picking the ideal program you can ultimately start a fulfilling career as a medical assistant in Stone Mountain GA.

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