9 Month Medical Assistant Program Odell IL

How to Find the Right Medical Assistant Training Program near Odell Illinois

Odell IL medical assistant checking pulseNow that you have decided to join the gratifying field of health care and enroll in a medical assistant school near Odell IL, it’s time to select a college that will furnish the proper training. But just how do you go about evaluating and comparing colleges so that you subsequently pick the ideal one? Many prospective students start by evaluating the medical assistant schools that are nearest to their residences and then lean toward those that have the most affordable tuition. While location and cost are very important, such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are critical factors as well. You may choose to look into several online medical assistant programs as an alternative also (more about that later). The bottom line is that before you select a college you need to carry out your due diligence and compare all pertinent aspects of the schools you are assessing. And to assist you with that task, we have furnished some questions that you need to ask each 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 kind of training and credentials that are available.

The Role of Medical Assistants

medical assistant with Odell IL nursing home patientThe job of a medical assistant can be varied as well as challenging. Essentially their function is ensure that the Odell IL hospitals, clinics and other medical care facilities where they work operate efficiently. Based on the type or size of facility, they may be more of a clinical assistant, an administrative assistant, or in smaller practices both. They are tasked with giving direct assistance to the physicians, nurses and other medical professionals but may also be found working at the front desk or in an office. Some of the potential responsibilities of a medical assistant include:

  • Completing insurance forms and submitting claims
  • Scheduling and verifying appointments
  • Taking vital signs and weighing patients
  • Collecting blood and other fluid and tissue specimens
  • Preparing rooms and instruments for physicians
  • Giving general support during exams and procedures

Even though medical assistants may perform almost any duty they are qualified to under Illinois law, some prefer to specialize in a particular area and attain certification. Two of the options available 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

Compared to many other medical professionals, medical assistants are not required to become licensed, certified, or to obtain a college degree. However, many Odell IL health care employers would rather hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (we’ll cover accreditation later ) that are certified. There are essentially 2 choices available for a formal education. The first and fastest route to becoming a medical assistant is to earn a diploma or a certificate. These programs usually take about a year to finish, some as little as six to nine months. They are developed to teach the basics of medical assisting and prepare graduates for entry level positions. The second option is to acquire an Associate Degree, which are usually 2 year programs available at junior and community colleges as well as technical and vocational schools. They are more extensive in design than the certificate or diploma programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant courses. They usually have a practical element involving an internship with a local medical practice. Associate Degrees are commonly a pre-requisite for and credits can be applied to a 4 year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a related field.

Medical Assistant Online Programs

woman attending medical assistant school online in Odell ILThere are many accredited medical assistant programs accessible online also. They are a good alternative for those who may not have time to attend classes on campus but could fit them in if accessible at home. This is a particularly good choice for students who continue working full time while earning their degree or certificate. As an additional benefit, many online programs have cheaper tuitions than the more conventional on campus alternatives. Ancillary expenses such as for commuting, textbooks and school supplies might be reduced also. But remember that all requirements for practical training or internships must still be satisfied, but they can typically be completed in Odell IL area medical facilities. If you can learn without the formal structure of participating in supervised classes on campus, then this approach to getting your training may be the best choice for you. With the online lessons and the practical training, everything needed to attain proficiency to perform as a medical assistant is provided.

Certification Options for Medical Assistants

As stated previously, becoming certified is not a legal mandate, but is an excellent choice for individuals who wish to advance their careers. Not only will it help in securing a job after graduation, but it may also enhance initial salary negotiations. Some possible Odell IL medical employers simply will not employ a medical assistant that has not attained accredited formal training or certification. One of the most popular and arguably the most highly regarded certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) provided by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). To qualify to apply for the CMA examination, a candidate must have graduated or will graduate within 30 days from an accredited medical assistant program. Other certifications are offered as well, such as the CMAA and the CCMA that we previously mentioned which are provided by the NHA.

What to Ask Medical Assistant Schools

Questions to ask Odell IL medical assistant programsPrior to reviewing your medical assistant school alternatives, you need to decide which type of credential you would like to attain, and if you would prefer attending classes on-campus or online at home. After those decisions have been made, you can start the process of comparing medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, some students limit their searches to the schools that are nearest to Odell IL with the cheapest tuition. Although cost and location are significant qualifications, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional factors 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 thinking about before making your final choice.

Is the Medical Assistant Course Accredited? There are a number of good reasons to confirm that the school you choose is accredited. First, accreditation helps ensure that the instruction you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you plan on becoming certified, you must enroll in an accredited program. Two of the approved agencies 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 one of these agencies, you will not be eligible to take the CMA examination. Additionally, if you plan on applying for a student loan or financial aid, they are frequently not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as previously mentioned, many potential Odell IL employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.

What is the Program’s Passing Rate? Most of the accredited medical assistant schools design their programs to ready students to pass one or more certification exams. To start with, you must learn which of the certifications the colleges you are looking at are preparing their students for. If you are interested in taking the CMA for example, then obviously you will need to enroll in a program focused on that certification. Second, ask what the school’s passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. This is just one of the methods to help evaluate the quality of a college’s program. Naturally schools with low rates are those that you will want to eliminate.

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 shortest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, although the average is about 1 year. Or you can opt 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 decide to pursue, verify that the schools you are reviewing provide the kind of program you are interested in.

Are Internships Sponsored? Numerous medical assistant colleges offer internship programs with Odell IL area medical care providers. They are an excellent way to receive hands-on clinical training and experience. They can also help students develop relationships within the Odell health care community. And as an added perk, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews as well.

Is Job Placement Help Offered? Landing that initial job can be a difficult task for graduating medical assistant students unless they obtain some assistance from a job placement program. Verify that the colleges you are researching provide job placement assistance in the Odell IL area and ask what their placement rate is. If a college has a high job placement rate for its students, it indicates that it has an excellent reputation within the health care community. It also suggests that it has a large network of employers to help place students in jobs.

How Large are the Classrooms? Class size might be an indicator of how much personal attention you will get throughout your training. Smaller 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 sit in on a few classes before enrolling in a school to observe what the teaching environment is like and just how much attention the students receive.

Is Class Scheduling Accessible? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant school while you continue working full time, it’s important that the college you enroll in provides classes that fit your schedule. If you have to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Odell IL, confirm that those times are offered. You might be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online program, but you will still have to schedule all internships or practical training that will be required. Additionally, ask what the protocol is for making up classes that you might have to miss due to illness, work or family responsibilities.

Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Odell Illinois?

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

Odell, Illinois

According to the 2010 census, Odell has a total area of 1.126 square miles (2.92 km2), of which 1.11 square miles (2.87 km2) (or 98.58%) is land and 0.016 square miles (0.04 km2) (or 1.42%) is water.[3]

Odell was laid out by Sydney S. Morgan (25 January 1823 – 5 April 1884) [4] and Henry A. Gardner (2 April 1816 – 27 July 1875) on 10 August 1856.[5] Both men were railroad engineers who had worked on the survey and construction of what soon became the Chicago and Alton Railroad. For a time Sydney S. Morgan divided his time between Joliet and Odell, but soon settled in Odell on a permanent basis where he became the town's chief promoter.[6] Gardner was born in Berkshire County, Massachusetts and had begun his railroad career working as a rodman on an extension of the Great Western Railroad in Massachusetts. He rose quickly through the ranks until he became chief engineer of the Mohawk and Hudson Railroad. Gardner came west in 1853 to work assistant engineer to Oliver H. Lee on the Chicago and Mississippi Railroad, He purchased land near Dwight and later went on to become Chief Engineer on the Michigan Central Railroad. Gardner was never a resident of Odell.[7] The town was platted when it became clear that the railroad would pass through their land. This Railroad was originally known as the Chicago and Mississippi Railroad, but quickly became The Chicago Alton and St. Louis, and then the Chicago and Alton. An excursion train ran through the town on 4 July 1854 regular service began in August 1854. Before the coming of the railroad, the land which became Odell Township was completely unsettled. Between 1852 and 1855 almost all of the land in the township was entered and farms were rapidly developed. The land on which the town would soon be erected had been first purchased from the government by. James C. Spencer and Henry A. Gardner on 4 May 1853. Through a series of quick transactions, Spencer sold his land to William H. Odell who then transferred it to Sydney S. Morgan.[8]

The town was surveyed by Thomas F. Norton, deputy surveyor of Livingston County. The railroad had been granted a 100-foot-wide (30 m) swath of land extending diagonally through the town. This presented a problem in town design, which was solved at Odell by aligning the entire Original Town with the tracks. A similar problem was presented by several towns along this railroad. Unlike the Toledo Peoria and Western Railroad, built through Livingston County at about the same time, a standard plan with shared street names does not seem to have been used along the Chicago and Mississippi.[9] Lots sold from twenty to thirty dollars, with twenty being more common.[10] Where the tracks passed through the town, the land used by the railroad was widened an additional 100 yards on both sides of the tracks, to create railroad grounds, although at Odell they were not labeled as such. This kind of widening of railroad property at townsites was a common feature of railroad towns built in the 1850s and may be seen at places like Dwight, Towanda, McLean, Fairbury and Chatsworth; it became less common with later railroad towns. The depot at Odell was on the north side of the tracks and the two early elevators on the south side. The Original Town included twenty-four numbered blocks, each of which contained up to twenty lots. There was no central public square designated on the plat. The original town plan remains substantially unaltered to this day.[11]

Choose the Best Medical Assistant School Odell IL

Odell IL medical assistant studentIt’s essential to begin your new career on the right foot by enrolling in a medical assistant college that will furnish the proper training. Regardless if you’re planning to launch a career in healthcare starting out as a medical assistant or to practice medical assistance as your life long career, you need to get the appropriate info 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 addressed in this article, make sure that the program you choose is accredited by an acknowledged agency, such as the CAAHEP. This is particularly important if you intend on taking the CMA certification exam. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in 9 Month Medical Assistant Program. But irrespective 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 compare programs and make an informed decision. And by picking the best program you can ultimately start a rewarding career as a medical assistant in Odell IL.

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