Category Archives: Massachusetts

Medical Assistant Education Requirements Whitinsville MA

How to Enroll In a Medical Assistant School near Whitinsville Massachusetts

Whitinsville MA medical assistant checking pulseOnce you have decided to join the rewarding profession of health care and enroll in a medical assistant school near Whitinsville MA, it’s time to choose a college that will furnish the proper training. But just how do you undertake comparing and evaluating schools so that you ultimately pick the right one? Many potential students begin by researching the medical assistant schools that are nearest to their residences and then lean toward those that have the lowest tuition. While cost and location are very important, such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are important factors also. You may want to look into some online medical assistant programs as an alternative also (more on that later). The bottom line is that before you select a program you need to finish your due diligence and compare all important aspects of the colleges you are examining. And to assist you with that task, we have furnished several questions that you should ask all of the colleges on your “maybe” list. But before we start that review, let’s talk a little bit about the responsibilities of a medical assistant and the kind of credentials and training that are available.

The Responsibilities of a Medical Assistant

medical assistant with Whitinsville MA nursing home patientThe job of a medical assistant can be varied as well as challenging. Basically their duty is ensure that the Whitinsville MA clinics, hospitals and other healthcare institutions where they work run efficiently. Based on the size or type of facility, they may be more of a clinical assistant, an administrative assistant, or in smaller practices both. They are tasked with providing direct support to the physicians, nurses and other health professionals but may also be found working in an office or at the front desk. Some of the many duties of a medical assistant include:

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

Although medical assistants may carry out almost any duty they are qualified to under Massachusetts law, some elect to specialize in a particular area and obtain certification. Two of the choices 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

Compared to many other healthcare practitioners, medical assistants are not required to become licensed, certified, or to earn a college degree. However, many Whitinsville MA health care employers choose to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training school (we’ll cover accreditation later ) that have earned certification. There are basically 2 choices provided for a formal education. The first and shortest route to becoming a medical assistant is to obtain a certificate or diploma. These programs usually 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 usually 2 year programs offered at junior and community colleges in addition to vocational and technical schools. They are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma or certificate programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant training. They usually have a clinical component involving an internship with a local medical practice. Associate Degrees are routinely a pre-requisite for and credits can be transferred to a 4 year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a similar field.

Online Medical Assistant Colleges

woman attending medical assistant school online in Whitinsville MAThere are numerous accredited medical assistant programs available online as well. They are a good option for individuals who might not have time to go to classes on campus but could work them in if accessible at home. This is an especially good alternative for students who continue working full time while attaining their certificate or degree. As an added benefit, some online programs have lower tuitions than the more conventional on campus alternatives. Supplemental costs including those for commuting, textbooks and school supplies might be reduced also. But bear in mind that any requirements for practical training or internships must still be satisfied, but they can typically be performed in Whitinsville MA area medical facilities. If you can earn a degree without the formal structure of participating in supervised classes on-campus, then this mode of receiving your education might be the ideal choice for you. Between the online classes and the clinical training, everything necessary to achieve proficiency to perform as a medical assistant is provided.

Certification Programs for Medical Assistants

As previously mentioned, becoming certified is not a legal requirement, but is a good idea for graduates who want to advance their careers. Not only will it help in attaining employment after graduation, but it might also help with preliminary salary negotiations. Many possible Whitinsville MA medical employers just will not employ a medical assistant that has not attained accredited formal training or certification. The most popular and possibly the most highly regarded certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). To qualify to sit for the CMA examination, a candidate must have graduated or will be graduating within thirty days from an accredited medical assistant program. Additional certifications are available as well, including the CCMA and the CMAA that we discussed earlier which are offered by the NHA.

Topics to Ask Medical Assistant Colleges

Questions to ask Whitinsville MA medical assistant programsBefore you can start assessing your medical assistant school alternatives, you have to choose which type of credential you want to earn, and if you would prefer attending classes on-campus or online from home. As soon as those selections have been made, you can begin the procedure of researching medical assistant schools. As we covered at the opening of this article, many potential students restrict their searches to the schools that are closest to Whitinsville MA with the lowest tuition. Although cost and location are significant qualifiers, they are not the only ones. There are a number of additional factors that you should look at when evaluating schools. To help you with that task, below are a few questions that you should ask about each of the programs you are considering before making your ultimate choice.

Is the Medical Assistant Program Accredited? There are many good reasons to confirm that the program you select is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps guarantee that the instruction you receive will be both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you plan on becoming certified, you must complete an accredited program. Two of the acknowledged 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 program is not accredited by either of these agencies, you will not be eligible to take the CMA exam. Also, if you plan on obtaining a student loan or financial assistance, they are often not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as mentioned previously, many prospective Whitinsville MA employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited college.

What is the School’s Passing Rate? The majority of accredited medical assistant schools design their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification examinations. To begin with, you must learn which of the certifications the programs you are considering are preparing their students for. If you are planning on taking the CMA for example, then of course you will want to select a program concentrating on that certification. Next, find out 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 school’s program. Of course programs with lower rates are ones that you will prefer to eliminate.

Which Programs are Available? As we previously covered, there are basically two routes to obtaining medical assistant training. You can select a certificate or diploma program and obtain entry level training in the fastest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, however the average is closer to 1 year. Or you can choose to obtain an Associate Degree and receive a more comprehensive education that will require about 2 years to accomplish in a junior college or trade school. Whichever program you elect to enroll in, make certain that the colleges you are considering provide the type of program you have an interest in.

Are Internships Provided? Numerous medical assistant schools offer internship programs with Whitinsville MA area health care providers. They are a great way to receive hands-on practical experience and training. They may also assist students develop relationships within the Whitinsville health care community. And as an added perk, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.

Is Job Placement Help Furnished? Landing that first job may be a challenging task for graduating medical assistant students unless they have some assistance from a job placement program. Confirm that the schools you are evaluating provide job placement assistance in the Whitinsville MA area and ask what their placement rate is. If a school has a high job placement rate for its graduates, it indicates that it has a good reputation within the healthcare community. It also signifies that it has a broad network of contacts to help place students in jobs.

How Big are the Classes? Class size might be an indicator of how much personal instruction you will receive during 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 couple of classes before choosing a school to witness what the teaching atmosphere is like and just how much attention the students receive.

Is Class Scheduling Accessible? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant college while you continue working full-time, it’s essential that the program you select offers classes that accommodate your schedule. If you need to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Whitinsville MA, verify that those times are available. You may be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online school, but you will also need to schedule any clinical training or internships that will be required. Also, ask what the policy is for making up classes that you might have to miss because of illness, work or family issues.

Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Whitinsville Massachusetts?

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

Whitinsville, Massachusetts

Whitinsville is an unincorporated village within the town of Northbridge in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. Whitinsville is a census-designated place (CDP) and its population was 6,704 at the 2010 census. Whitinsville is pronounced as if it were spelled "White-ins-ville". It was founded by the Whitin family, after whom it is also named. It is a post office jurisdiction, with a ZIP Code of 01588. It is located on the Mumford River, a tributary of the Blackstone River.

Whitinsville has been designated as a mill village of national historic significance to America's earliest industrialization, and is one of only four villages selected by the John H. Chaffee Blackstone River Valley National Historic Corridor Commission to receive this designation. Hopedale is the only other Massachusetts mill village to achieve this designation by the corridor commission.

This village was originally Nipmuc Indian lands, and was first settled as part of Mendon in 1662. From 1662 to 1727 it was part of Mendon, then later it became part of Uxbridge from 1727 to 1772. In 1772 Northbridge finally became a separate town. The village's early name was "South Northbridge", before the Whitin family's rise to prominence. Col. John Spring led a militia training company from Uxbridge which fought in the American Revolution. Col. Spring was from the section that became South Northbridge.

Select the Ideal Medical Assistant School Whitinsville MA

Whitinsville MA medical assistant studentIt’s important to begin your new career on the right foot by picking a medical assistant program that will provide the proper training. Regardless if you’re goal is to begin a career in health care starting out as a medical assistant or to practice medical assistance as your lifetime career, you need to acquire the appropriate info on available programs prior to making your selection. There are so many colleges providing training these days that you can make a selection based on your individual circumstances and personal preferences. And as we have addressed in this article, make certain that the program you select is accredited by an acknowledged organization, for example the CAAHEP. This is especially important if you anticipate taking the CMA certification exam. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Medical Assistant Education Requirements. But irrespective of the kind of credential that you plan to earn or if you have decided to attend either an on-campus or online school, be sure to ask the questions we have provided so you can compare programs and make an informed decision. And by picking the right program you can ultimately start a rewarding career as a medical assistant in Whitinsville MA.

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